Where to See Your Favorite Family Holiday Movies on the Big Screen in Boston

One of my family’s favorite traditions is watching all of the classic holiday movies. We start right after Thanksgiving to get us in the holiday spirit as we get our tree, bake cookies, and wrap gifts. Usually we watch these movies at home on our couch with popcorn and pajamas, but there’s something really special about seeing a film on the big screen. With that in mind, here's where you and your family can catch all of your favorite holiday flicks at movie theaters and libraries in or near Boston this season:

The Nutcracker on Long Island

One of the most beloved stories ever told would have to be The Nutcracker, which is typically your child's first introduction to classical ballet. This fairy-tale about the beauty and magic of Christmas and the ways that love and joy can transform dreams into reality is always satisfying. This Tchaikovsky work of art is a lovely way to familiarize children to the delights of great theater and there’s no need to travel far to experience this wonderful and much-loved Christmas story. Here is a list of upcoming The Nutcracker performances on Long Island in 2015.

And be sure to take a look at our Long Island Holiday Fun Guide, including non-Nutcracker holiday shows.

Weekday Picks: Zoo 50th Birthday, Battleship Grinch, & Singing Mayor, Nov. 28-Dec. 2

The Los Angeles Zoo turns 50 years old Monday, and a big party is planned. Guests can enjoy reduced admission and food prices, as well as a parade and a special birthday celebration event featuring cake and a giant card to sign. The animals get to join in on the celebration, too, with special treats and presentations. 

Elsewhere, holiday celebrations continue to dominate the calendar, including theater performances, community tree lighting events, and visits with Santa (starting Monday he'll be hitting a different street in Redondo every night). Check out our comprehensive Los Angeles Holiday Guide to find more festive activities and events. 

And for the most fun per square inch, check the Mommy Poppins Event Calendar daily, as well as our monthly picks in our November GoList. (The first week of the month means some free museum days, too.) Here are some of our favorites for this week...

December GoList: Top Things To Do with Kids in Boston for the Holidays

Holiday celebrations kick into high gear in December, and the month brings the return of many beloved seasonal traditions like tree lighting ceremonies, performances of The Nutcracker and outdoor ice skatingOur Event Calendar is packed with events for the holidays, family-friendly performances and vacation week activities for the kids. With so much going on it's not easy to choose, but here are our top 10 picks for holiday activities and special events this December.

Best Places to Take Pictures with Santa in NYC

Santa Claus is coming to town, and he’s not camera shy. New York City parents have a host of options for posing with Santa, from the popular Santaland at Macy's to more casual events, where you can take your own festive photos of the kids and jolly St. Nick.

We’ve rounded up more than a dozen of our favorites from across the five boroughs, including options for those who want to splurge, bring their pets, or just get it over with, as well as those with special needs. With so many alternatives, chances are, wherever you are, your kids won’t be far from Santa.

Find more seasonal fun, including a Santa brunch or tea, in our NYC Holiday Guide.

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Santa's Workshop, Holiday DIY

As we segue from November to December, the holiday events start piling on, with a particular concentration of tree-lighting ceremonies this time of year. A highlight among those is this week’s Bronxville Hometown Holiday Tree Lighting, which includes  a caroling procession to the grand opening of Santa’s Workshop. This week is also a great time for Holiday DIY, and even if you’re no Martha Stewart, you can make gifts and décor at any of these hands-on opportunities.

If your kids are hard on themselves when they make a mistake, bring them to The Art of Science, where they can learn about all the wonderful inventions that were born from blunders (the Slinky, Silly Putty and chocolate-chip cookies to name a few!).

Read on for our top picks for each weekday—all of which are FREE!—and visit our Event Calendar for even more options. And be sure to consult our Holiday Fun Guide, full of yet more activities and ideas to help you get the most out of the holidays with kids. 

Weekday Fun in NJ: Christmas Festival, Tree Lightings

Holiday lights, tree lightings, Santa visits – it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in New Jersey. As we make our way into December, you can see amazing light displays in Smithville and Cranbury this week. And don't miss a festive holiday party at the Newport Tree Lighting celebration.

Plus, it's that train time of year. Catch a ride to see Santa on one of several holiday trains, or check out miniature trains at the Holiday Model Train Show

Read on for our best children's events the week of November 28 – December 2, and don’t forget to check out our Event Calendar and Holiday Guide for even more holiday season fun.

Where to Cut Your Own Christmas Tree Near Boston

Whether it’s a family holiday tradition or a new experience, cutting your own Christmas tree adds a dimension to the holiday season that’s hard to match. There’s nothing quite like the real deal—a pine-smelling, sap-sticky, Christmas tree—and the opportunity for creating a lasting family memory in the process is an added bonus. We have rounded up a sampling of cut-your-own locations to get started, and keep reading to the end for helpful tips!

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