Welcome To New York State Festivals!

Festivals are a staple of New York, be it in the north country with Bobcats, Bears and Brews at the Zoo, or the Buffalo Chicken Wing Festival. Here, we look to catalog many of the festivals this great state has to offer each year.

We’ll provide you with features as we, too, travel around the state to some of our favorites — like Ithaca’s Apple Harvest Festival — and the ones we just had to check out –like The Great Chocolate Train Wreck Festival in Hamilton.

Please take some time to browse through our festival listings, where you’ll find descriptions, photos, directions and what else there is to do in the area.

If you are a festival organizer and don’t see your festival here, please help us build our listing by submitting your festival.

Continue reading to meet “The Festival Fanatics!”

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Saratoga’s “First Night Festival” is Upstate’s Largest!


First Night Saratoga is the largest New Year’s Eve event in New York outside of NYC. As one of the oldest and largest First Night celebrations in the country, the event is the most affordable, accessible, family-friendly, safe and exciting way to spend New Year’s Eve in the region!  This year, Saratoga Arts brings over seventy regional and touring performing groups to over thirty venues throughout Historic Downtown Saratoga Springs for this evening of live music, dance, comedy and other performances.  Annually, over 10,000 people ring in the new year with Saratoga Arts and First Night Saratoga!

Click here for details!

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Saranac Lake Winter Festival is One of New York’s Largest!


February 6, 2015 begins the historic Saranac lake Winter festival.  This multi-day festival is one of the oldest winter revelries in the nation and this year will be the 118th anniversary of this great family event.

Get a full schedule of events here http://www.saranaclake.com/events/2015/02/06/saranac-lake-winter-carnival

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A Catskill Mountains Holiday Festival “On the Rails”

catskill trainGet caught up in the magic of the season and enjoy our decorated train as we make our way through the historic city of Kingston. Warm up next to our caboose’s wood stove, or enjoy the festive atmosphere of our open-air car. Children will also have a chance to visit with Santa Claus riding our trains December 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23rd! Our trains are fun for the whole family, so come on down and start a new holiday tradition this year!

Leaving hourly, the Holiday Train will depart from Westbrook Lane for a three-mile round trip; heading West across Fair Street, Washington Avenue, to the old C9 Bridge, and then back again. Trains consist of open-air seating as well as limited space inside our refurbished caboose. Please dress appropriately and make sure to bundle up!

December 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29 and 30th!


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Ulster Park “Frosty Fest” is a Kiddie’s Delight!

Frosty Fest is running each weekend from now through New Years Eve in Ulster Park, just south of Kingston.  This is tailor made for the young at heart!  For festival information CLICK HERE.


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Oswego’s Big Holiday River Festival is December 5!


The Oswego “Lights on the River Festival” is Friday, December 5, 2014.  this annual event draws hundreds for a night of shopping, live entertainment, carolers in the street, lots of delicious foods, vendors, tours of historic buildings and a spectacular fireworks display at 8:00 p.m.  Don’t forget to bring th ekiddies to see Santa Claus and to pet his live reindeer!

For details CLICK HERE.

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Cooperstown’s Magical Candlelight Night A Top, Popular Festival


The annual Candlelight Evening at the Farmer’s Museum in Coopertsown is always one of the most anticipated events in “The Village Beautiful.”  On Saturday, December 13 hundreds travel from far and near to celebrate an old-fashioned Christmas surrounded by the historic and quaint buildings of the Farmer’s Museum.

For details click here.

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Ithaca Hosts a Whole Month of Winter Festivals in December!

Ithaca-Festival1Ithaca is doing it up big this December with festivals and events all month long in their historic downtown Commons area.  Many local restaurants will be having specials for tourists to enjoy and there will be “Santa-themed” events for the young and young-at-heart each weekend in December.  Click on the link below…and enjoy it all!


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Sharon Springs Victorian Holiday Festival December 5-7

sharon springs

The streets of little Sharon Springs will be filled with gentlemen in top hats and gentleladies in flowing hoop skirts as the calendar gets turned back to the Victorian era for this ever growing annual event.  Check the website below for times and schedules of events.  There are live musical performances, a parade, plenty of food, wagon rides and merriment in the air at this event which attracts thousands to this tiny village of 600 residents.


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Pucker Up! It’s the Rosendale Pickle Festival!


It is time for the 17th Annual International Pickle Festival in Rosendale, NY (Ulster County).  Various countries are represented with pickle varieties of all sorts.  Good food, great fun, live music and more.  Come on down on Sunday, November 23.  !This is one of the few food festivals to fall near the end of the year and it is a lot of fun.

So pucker up and CLICK HERE for details!

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It’s a Shaker Christmas Craft Fair and Festival in Albany!


This festival runs through December 1, 2014 every day except Sundays.  Times are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  This is an Albany tradition for a fun way of getting some unique holiday gifts at a historic place (the Shaker Heritage Society)

Find perfect holiday gifts for everyone on your list at our annual Christmas Craft Fair! Over 50 regional crafters and artisans are represented, offering thousands of items for your perusal. Jewelry, candles, quilted and woven goods, photography, ceramics, apparel, ornaments, home décor, and jams and preserves are among the most popular items. The fair is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00-4:00 and admission is free!

For details CLICK HERE!

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