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WinterFest at the Brooklyn Museum: Shopping, Santa, & Free Holiday Events

November 2, 2018 - by Merrill Lee Girardeau
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Slide into the holiday season, Brooklyn-style! Brand-new for the 2018 holiday season, the inaugural WinterFest at the Brooklyn Museum opens the day after Thanksgiving and closes out on New Year's Eve. This six-week winter wonderland, popping up on the grounds of the museum, will feature a wide range of offerings for the whole family. Bring kids to explore a land of chocolate, shop locally made gifts, see free live performances, and catch special appearances of Kris Kringle himself.

Come to Brooklyn for an enchanting Christmas experience, open seven days a week this holiday season. Kids can see Santa and Mrs. Claus to share their wish list for the holiday, as well as greet the duo at storytime and take pictures with these special visitors from the North Pole. Also on the grounds of WinterFest, walk through a giant snow globe and marvel at Bouncy, the world’s largest snowman.

Santa at WinterFest

Kids and adults alike can ride down the massive Snowzilla slide and journey through an enchanted Christmas tree maze full of light. A spectacular menorah-lighting ceremony will be offered in celebration of Hanukkah as well. Check the WinterFest calendar for details.

Eat your way through a chocolate-themed story at the interactive Chocolate Dome Story, where visitors of all ages can learn about chocolate-making and experience its delightful results firsthand. Adults can also learn at the interactive wine-tasting called Vinopolis, where a lesson in wine production accompanies a few tastes of reds, whites, and rosés. There will also be a beer garden near the stage, where live performances and films will show nightly.

WinterFest at Brooklyn Museum

The cute rows of stalls will house products from local vendors at Angels Market, open daily at WinterFest. With a selection of 50 vendors, the market will simplify your holiday shopping by providing a diverse array of artisanal gifts with a personal touch for every person on your list. Vendors will include natural soaps and candles from Brooklyn Body Bar & Bath. Find “the coolest t-shirts on planet Earth” from Rockstar Revolution and artfully sculpted candles from the Andrej Urem Collection. Add some whimsy to your child’s winter ensemble with bear-paw gloves from Bearhands & Buddies

Live performances and holiday films will be shown nightly from the Life Is Beautiful Stage. The majority of these performances will be free for all. Upcoming acts include dancers from Gowanus dance studio Dancewave, as well as the jazz faculty and ensembles from the Brooklyn Music School in Fort Greene. Other performances will include singers, carolers, brass bands, acapella singers, and more. The calendar of performances, including select ticketed events, will be released on November 10. 

The event welcomes student groups to visit and enjoy Winterfest. Student groups will receive planning services and discount pricing from the event’s program specialist.   

While you’re in the area for WinterFest, check out the institution hosting this special event. The Brooklyn Museum is home to a wide-ranging collection of art and artifacts from around the world, with special emphasis on Egyptian and native art from North America, South America, and the Caribbean. Its special exhibitions this season include Soul of a Nation and Syria, Then and Now.

This event is also hosted in part by Brooklyn Botanic Garden, a 39-acre collection of gardens adjacent to the Brooklyn Museum. The event is organized by Seasonal Activation Group.


WinterFest will be located on the grounds of the Brooklyn Museum at 200 Eastern Parkway. The event opens November 23 and runs 7 days a week until closing on December 31. Visit for tickets and more.

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