What's Open on Christmas Day: 11 Things To Do on Long Island

Catch a showing of highly anticipated Sing 2 on Christmas Day. Photo courtesy of Universal
Catch a showing of highly anticipated Sing 2 on Christmas Day. Photo courtesy of Universal

Looking for something to do as a family after gift opening on Christmas Day on Long Island? Or perhaps you are not celebrating and wondering what is open on Saturday, December 25?

While many businesses are closed, there are a few kid-friendly destinations open, plus plenty of holiday activities, both indoors and out, to keep the group entertained. In fact, we’ve rounded up 11 activities the whole family can enjoy on Christmas Day.

For more seasonal fun, be sure to check out our Long Island Events Calendar and Holiday Fun Guide. Plus, we have our best bets for things to do over the 10-day school vacation.

New York State's recently enacted COVID-19 restrictions require face masks and vaccination records for many indoor activities through the end of the holiday season. Please remember to bring both with you.    

Things To Do Christmas Day On Long Island

1. See a Movie

Catch Sing 2, Encanta, or another family flick. Most theaters are open on Christmas Day, although they might be operating on holiday hours.

2. Lace Up Your Ice Skates

What could be better than racing around the ice at one of Long Island’s indoor or outdoor rinks? Some rinks, including the Port Washington Skating Center, are open on Christmas Day although they might be operating on a holiday schedule.

3. Check Out Holiday Light Displays

Gazing at the beautiful displays lighting up Long Island is a favorite holiday tradition, whether you celebrate Christmas or not. Choose from among the many planned displays, or take a tour to see the spectacular lights adorning homes around LI. 

4. Put the Finishing Touches on Your Santa Photo 

Prove to the kids Santa visited with these apps that let you fake a photo of Santa in your living room.

5. Take a Hike

Bundle up the kiddies and enjoy the great outdoors on a winter walk. Whether you're in Nassau, Suffolk or on the East End, these family-friendly hikes will help you burn some calories after the big feast.

RELATED: Iconic Window Displays in Manhattan for 2021

Gaze in awe at the decorated holiday windows in Manhattan. Photo by Jody Mercier

6. Day Trip Into NYC

Is there a place more more magical at Christmas than Manhattan? Take a quiet but festive holiday walk, or a visit to one of these NYC hot spots that remain open on the holiday, including theaters, museums, and even zoos. Again, just remember to bring your mask and vaccination records.

7. Make It a Family Day

Tackle something on our list of 100 Things to Do on Long Island with Kids, play board games, or make a family craft project with one of these dozens of DIY ideas

8. Go Bowling

Many of the area's bowling alleys are open, perhaps on an abbreviated schedule. Claim an alley at AMF East Meadow, which opens at 4pm on Christmas Day, or call ahead for lanes in Nassau County and Suffolk County to see what is open near you. 

RELATED: Free Holiday and Christmas Events on Long Island, 2021

Enjoy a classic holidaty feast at the Coach Meeting House. Photo courtesy of the restaurant

9. Enjoy Dinner Out 

There are several Long Island restaurants open on Christmas Day, so take advantage of the chance to have someone else cook (and clean up) for you. 

10. Volunteer

It's the season for giving, so why not give a bit of your time to those less fortunate by volunteering. You can adopt a family for the season, donate toys, or perhaps work in a soup kitchen on Christmas Day. 

RELATED: Polar Express and Holiday Train Trips for Christmas, 2021

11. See Lanterns Light Up the Night

Come nightfall, why not check out one of these three new lantern festivals currently illuminating Long Island. These creative displays are all open on Christmas Day.

A version of this post was first published in 2016. It was updated in December 2021.

Racing Series in North Babylon
Robert Moses Middle School - 6:00 PM Pick
Kids Eat Free at The 3rd Rail Bar and Grille
The 3rd Rail Bar and Grille - 4:00 PM
Greenport Cherry Blossom Festival
Greenport Village Hall - various times
Online Guitar Lessons for Kids
Virtual - various times
Online Art Lessons for Kids
Virtual - various times
Neighborhood Guides
Activity Guides