It’s the “Holidays” in The Brandywine Valley.
Don’t spend all of your time running from store to store, frantically trying to find that perfect gift when instead you can wander hand in hand in the winter wonderland in Pierre DuPont’s Garden, Longwood, through January 12th. This year Longwood is transformed with thousands of poinsettias, cyclamens, amaryllis, lilies, and fruit-adorned trees towering as high as 18 feet, in the conservatory. See the fountains of summer come alive again to the music of the season. Then there are the hollies, roses, callas, and so many more blooms. This year, the Music Room display pays homage to the Green Room at the Hotel du Pont in Wilmington, DE, featuring sugared fruit-laden trees and a lavish holiday tea set for 18 special guests. If you’ve seen the Outdoor Gardens before at Christmas, you’re not going to believe that there are more colorful lights on display than ever before in the expanded outdoor experience— Please don’t forget the Garden Railway for the young and young at heart.
To cut down on crowds and long waits, again this year, admission will be by timed tickets, only, so please go to:
for all of the details or better
Now don’t stop there, on to the Brandywine River Museum (November 29 through January 5). Open until 9 p.m. on December 5, 12, 19 and 26 and until 6 p.m. December 27-30 Here, besides the outstanding Wyeth Family art, is Imagine Brandywine, this new exhibition space displays creative art projects by area school students, inspired by the museum's collection and landscape. More than 150 works by students in kindergarten through sixth grade from the Avon Grove Charter School will be on view through January 10. For the holidays, everyone becomes a child again when they see the O gauge train display on over 2,000 feet of track. The antique dolls are back!, Dressed in beautiful period clothing, some on view in rooms filled with exquisite hand-crafted furnishings and miniature paintings by members of the Wyeth family.
Holiday Shops are held in the museum courtyard, weekends, November 29 through December 22, and Daily, December 26 through 30. Seven artisans are featured each week, handcrafted dolls, scarves, jewelry, pottery and more. The big Critter sale is December 7 & 8, 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. when handcrafted “critter” ornaments” made by the museum volunteers are for sale in the museum’s lecture room. Admission is free for the sale. After the sale you’ll find a limited number in the Gift Shop, (but hurry, they won’t last long).. If you don’t know what critters are, come to the Brandywine River Museum, through January 5, 2013. You don’t know what you’re missing.
This year Yuletide will explore lights and wedding celebrations of the mid-1800s. This year’s tour will take a look at the traditions early Americans brought with them from their European homelands, the various devices used to safely light up Christmas trees in pre-electricity days, and color wheels and bubble lights of the mid-20th century. Discover how lights were used not only to brighten long winter nights but also to enrich holiday experiences. Wedding customs will be explored and celebrations from the mid-1800s, including the display of a candlelit ballroom with a chalked floor that artists would draw as an especially elegant feature for partygoers. You can also partake in related programming opportunities including floral design workshops, Crafternoons, a live performance of A Christmas Carol, and nighttime events such as Yuletide Jazz and Wine.
Winterthur is open on Mondays from 10-5PM throughout the holiday season as it is every other day of the week. Be sure to check their website for other extended hours.
Did we mention the incomparable Nemours mansion (limited 3 hr. Christmas tours-Tues.-Sun.11/9-12/31) and Christmas at Hagley through January 6th.
This is just the beginning of a plethora of incredible holiday treasures on display and activities throughout the holiday season. Don’t delay. Call now to reserve your stay in the holiday-filled Brandywine Valley, Santa’s favorite stop in Pennsylvania. Stay tuned in January for all of the reasons why you want to spend your winter retreat here – snug as a bug in a rug.
The Brandywine Valley has it all!