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Santa By Sea

Mr. Claus makes a very Rhody entrance to kick-off the Wickford Village Festival of Lights


When you gaze out over the water on the first weekend of December, don’t be surprised to see Santa making the most Rhode Island entrance ever: on the lobster boat Sea Princess, led by his kayaking reindeer, sailing into the Town Dock on Brown Street in Wickford.

This unforgettable arrival is the festive topper on the Wickford Village Festival of Lights, an annual holiday celebration this year from November 29 to December 2. This one-of-a-kind incoming has been a tradition for 33 years. When Mr. Claus makes port and sets his shiny, buckled boots on land, the merriment begins: carols, tree lighting, horse-drawn hay rides, parade, hot cocoa and snacks, performances and concerts, and selections from local merchants and artisans.

Wickford Village is a New England time capsule, showcasing historic homes, preserved churches, and antique storefronts. The handsome brick buildings and tree-lined streets provide the picturesque backdrop for this seaside soiree; thousands of holiday lights only add to the charming aesthetic, a colonial winter wonderland. Santa’s quirky entrance and Elf Parade – yes, Elf, so don your red-and-green garb, pointed shoes, and matching ears – adds just the perfect modern – not to mention coastal – twist.

For more information on the Wickford Village Festival of Lights, visit their Facebook page.