There are few harbingers of the holiday season more beloved than the annual lightings of Christmas trees. Carolers, steaming mugs of hot cocoa and Santa himself are all part of this festive holiday tradition. Nearly every town on Long Island has its own special tree-lighting celebration, but here is a roundup of some of the most popular festivals across the island. For more holiday fun, visit our Holiday Event Guide.
Christmas Tree Lighting and Caroling
Northport Village Park
November 29th, 7pm
This festive ceremony might be a lovely way to end your Black Friday shopping spree. Northport also hosts a "Leg Lamp Lighting," a la A Christmas Story, the next evening at the Northport Hardware Store at 7pm.
Downtown Winter Festival and Tree Lighting
Glen Cove Village Square
November 30th, 1:30pm
This full-day event includes photos with Santa, carriage rides and live music. The candlelight ceremony begins at 4:45pm, followed by Santa's arrival and the Christmas tree lighting.
Annual Christmas Tree Lighting
Mattituck-Laurel Historical Society
Route 25 at Cardinal Drive, Mattituck
November 30th, 5pm
Join this annual Christmas tree lighting out on the front lawn. The lights will be lit at dusk, followed by caroling and refreshments. Stop by earlier for a visit from Santa from 1pm-4pm.
Lighting the Lighthouse
Montauk Point Lighthouse
2000 Montauk Highway, Montauk
November 30th, 4pm-7pm
Watch as this beautiful Long Island landmark is lit for the season. Thousands of lights will decorate the tower and museum every night until January 1st. The celebration also includes holiday music, caroling and a visit from Santa.
The Big Duck Holiday Lighting
The Big Duck
1012 Flanders Road, Flanders
December 4th, 7pm
The Big Duck, one of Long Island's most quirky landmarks, hosts its annual Holiday Lighting the first Wednesday after Thanksgiving. Join in the fun as the big bird twinkles with festive lights.
Copiague Annual Tree Lighting
Great Neck Road & Oak Street, Copiague
December 6th, 7pm
Don't miss this annual event, featuring performances by the Middle School Chamber Choir and The Long Island Dance Force. Santa will be present, plus hot chocolate will be available for all.
Christmas Tree Lighting & Holiday Extravaganza
December 6th, 6pm-10pm
This event features a visit with Santa, horse-drawn carriage rides through the village, carolers and refreshments. The tree will be lit at 7pm.
Annual Christmas Tree Lighting
Brookhaven Town Hall
One Independence Hill, Farmingville
December 6th, 6pm
Visit Town Hall to enjoy local music and entertainment, including the Rocky Point High School Singing Santas. The tree lighting ceremony begins at 7pm. Donations of new, unwrapped toys are requested.
Orphans Tree Lighting
Main Street, Islip
December 7th, 7pm
This event is part of Islip's "Merry on Main" holiday celebration, which runs from 2pm-6pm. There will be activities for all ages, including a holiday parade, gingerbread house competition and holiday craft fair. The tree will be lit at Brookwood Hall at 7pm.
Village Christmas Tree & Menorah Lighting Ceremony
The Village Green & Gazebo
170 Main Street at Mill Road, Westhampton Beach
December 7th, 6:30pm-7:30pm
This delightful ceremony includes festive holiday caroling, hot cocoa and cookies, and the appearance of Santa by fire engine. The Village also hosts a Holiday Festival during the day with events including holiday movies for kids, horse and buggy rides, and story time with Mrs. Claus.
Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony
Belmont Lake State Park
625 Belmont Avenue, West Babylon
December 7th, 4:15pm
This celebration includes traditional holiday music, ice sculpting demonstrations and a visit from Santa. The tree lighting will take place at 5pm, followed by a spectacular fireworks display.
First Night & Tree Lighting [Sold Out]
Old Westbury Gardens
71 Old Westbury Road, Old Westbury
December 7th, 6:30pm-9pm
The event boasts light refreshments, a performance by the Bethel Concert Choir, a visit from Santa and a glorious tree lighting at 8:15pm. Admission is $10 per person, $5 for children ages 3-12 years. Advance registration required.
34th Annual Holiday Festival
Stony Brook Village Center
Main Street on the Harbor, Stony Brook
December 8th, 1pm-6pm
This popular festival features holiday carolers, a model train display, petting zoo and a promenade of over 70 decorated trees along the Village's pathways. Santa Claus will visit from 2pm-5pm and illuminate the holiday tree at 5:30pm.
Ninth Annual Tree Lighting & Visit from Santa
Planting Fields Arboretum
1395 Planting Fields Road, Oyster Bay
December 13th, 6pm-8pm
This free event promises holiday-themed activities, self-guided tours, refreshments and caroling. The lighting of the tree happens at 6pm and Santa will visit at 7:30pm.
Updated by Jennifer Battista on November 17, 2013.