'First Weekend' in the park offers traditional holiday delights

Bushkill. Get in touch with Christmas Past in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area on the weekend of Dec. 7-8. Enjoy Victorian decorations, old-fashioned crafts, and Christmas carols in the park.

22 Nov 2019 | 03:50

The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and its partners will be hosting a series of annual holiday and seasonal events on the first weekend of December.

“First Weekend offers a unique opportunity for people to take a drive through the park and visit several of our partner-operated sites, participate in holiday events, and shop for unique gifts while enjoying the scenic beauty and history of the park,” said Jennifer Kavanaugh, the park’s Volunteer and Partnership Program Coordinator. “It’s a great way to get in the spirit of the season and a chance for people to learn about past holiday traditions while making new ones.”

Most programs are free.

New Jersey

"Victorian Christmas Celebration" at Millbrook Village, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7. Costumed guides will prepare holiday meals over woodstoves and open hearths, and craftsmen will ply their trades. Children are invited to join hands-on activities, old fashioned toys, games, and crafts. Historic homes will be decorated for Christmas in the Victorian style. Free.

A Christmas carol service at Millbrook Village Church, 5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 8. Sing along to your favorite Christmas songs alongside costumed guides. Free.

"Old Fashioned Holiday Weekends," hosted by the Montague Association for the Restoration of Community History, will be held at the historic Foster Armstrong House in Montague, N.J. The 1790s house will be decorated for Christmas with several special exhibits, a collection of decorated trees, and costumed docents. The Foster-Armstrong House is open from 1 to 4 p.m. on the weekends of Nov. 30-Dec. 1, Dec. 7-8, and Dec. 14-15. The Foster General Store gift shop is open during the weekend events. Free.

A Walpack Christmas at the Rosenkrans Museum and the Walpack Church in the historic village of Walpack Center on Dec. 7, 14, and 15 from 1 to 4 p.m. Both buildings will be decorated for the holidays and staffed with costumed docents from the Walpack Historical Society. Experience Christmas traditions and exhibits from a late nineteenth-century rural farming community. Free.

Peters Valley Gallery Open House on Dec. 7 and 8 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.Two floors of the gallery will be filled with handmade crafts by more than 200 American artists from across the country. Sip hot cider and have a snack as you find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. Personal attention, artist demonstrations and free gift wrapping make this a memorable shopping experience. The Peters Valley Gallery is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Visit the online store at PetersValleyGallery.org.


DIY birdfeeders at the Pocono Environmental Education Center (PEEC) in Dingmans Ferry from 10 a.m. to noon on Dec. 7. Participants will create their own birdfeeder using recycled materials.

Winter ecology hike at the Pocono Environmental Education Center (PEEC) in Dingmans Ferry from 10 a.m. to noon on Dec. 8. The cost to participate in both programs is $5 and pre-registration is required. For more information or to register call 570-828-2319 or go to peec@peec.org. The EcoZone Discovery Room at PEEC is open to the public on Dec. 7 from 1 to 4 p.m. Admission is $2 per person.

For more information
For directions and information about Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and all of its partners, programs, services and facilities:
Call the Bushkill Meeting Center at 570-588-7237, Monday through Friday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Visit the park’s website at nps.gov/dewa.
Follow the park on facebook.com/DelWaterGapNPS.