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Skaneateles crowned New York’s best ‘Christmas Town’

HGTV, the popular cable channel known for its focus on home and lifestyle, has recently named Skaneateles in Onondaga County as New York’s best small “Christmas town.” This recognition is part of HGTV’s list highlighting the top holiday destinations in each state, celebrated for their unique holiday traditions and festive atmospheres that are ideal for family trips.

The channel’s website describes these towns as winter wonderlands, offering a variety of seasonal activities including light shows, sleigh rides, holiday performances, caroling, parades, and Christmas markets. Additionally, these towns are recognized for incorporating local traditions into their celebrations, such as unique parades, boat rides, and scavenger hunts, adding to their charm and appeal as holiday destinations.

Skaneateles, a picturesque lakeside town with approximately 7,100 residents, stands out for its “Dickens Christmas” event, which runs from noon to 4 p.m. on weekends through December 23, with a shortened version scheduled for Christmas Eve, ending at 2:30 p.m.

Visitors to Skaneateles during this festive season can enjoy a range of activities including Christmas carol sing-alongs with Dickens characters at the town gazebo, interactive scenes from Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” street performances by strolling Dickens characters, horse-drawn carriage rides, and the opportunity to savor holiday treats like roasted chestnuts and eggnog. Additionally, those exploring the town can encounter a brass band, the occasional bagpiper, and even meet iconic characters like Ebenezer Scrooge, making for a truly immersive and memorable holiday experience.