One of the specialties of our architecture firm is historic preservation, so we have an interest in historical activities and events in our community. From historic homes and building projects to the sense of nostalgia we feel as a result of fond memories, history plays an important role in everyday life. The holiday season is the perfect time of year to look back on history and celebrate days of old.

The Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, is offering a number of historical activities and events as part of its holiday programming this December. You don’t want to miss the 35th Annual Candlelight Stroll, which transports you back to simpler times with 350 years of American history and holiday traditions in the “Christmas Capital of North America”. The dates for this year’s stroll are Dec. 6-7, Dec. 13-14, and Dec. 20-21, 2014. In addition, guided tours of five of the decorated holiday houses will be given Dec. 26-31.

During the candlelight stroll, the museum’s 10-acre grounds and 40 historic buildings will be transformed into a holiday wonderland. Flickering candles in glass lanterns will light the streets, and homes will feature natural handcrafted holiday decor from different time periods while carolers sing and bonfires crackle.

Costumed characters will welcome visitors at each home and help set the scene for each era. Some of the scenes that will be portrayed include a Hanukkah celebration in a 1919 Russian Jewish kitchen and a Victorian Christmas.

Besides viewing the homes, you can enjoy live music, demonstrations of traditional crafts such as barrel making, horse-drawn carriage rides, a bonfire, complimentary refreshments, and, new this year–an ice skating rink. After the stroll, check out Pickwick’s at the Banke, a museum shop reflecting Portsmouth’s maritime colonial heritage, where you might find a unique souvenir or gift to take home.

Tickets for the Candlelight Stroll are $23 for adults, $11.50 for ages 5-17, and ages under 5 are free. The holiday house tour is $15 for adults, $10 for ages 5-17, and ages under 5 are free.

Contact TMS Architects for architecture services in New England.

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