If you’ve been around City Hall recently, you may have begun to see the formation of another Christmas Village starting to take shape, and the annual venue will be in full swing with some new additions and old favorites on Thanksgiving Day.
Now in its 16th year, there will be over 120 vendors selling their crafts from around the world beginning Nov. 23 and running through Christmas Eve.
“Christmas Village has become a must-do family tradition that brings together multiple generations in one of Philly’s most iconic public spaces in the heart of Center City,” said Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Commissioner Orlando Rendon in a statement.
Rendon continued: “Each and every year, Christmas Village, presented by Bank of America, fills Love Park with holiday cheer, great food, and beautiful gift items. We’re proud to continue to highlight more local businesses that represent the diversity of Philadelphia’s neighborhoods in showcasing their local handmade arts and crafts to the largest audience in the region during the holidays.”
New on the docket this year are later hours for the venue—through 8 p.m. Sunday to Thursday, and through 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. But Christmas Village still includes plenty of old favorites: A delicious variety of vendors (including the return of the Raclette cheese sandwiches and traditional German food like Käsespätzle), an assortment of shopping opportunities, the double-decker carousel and a variety of special activations that will happen weekly.
Between Christmas Village, and the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market across the street (which the Village organizers curated), shoppers this season in Philadelphia will have quite the pick to sift through with one-of-a-kind ornaments, toys, apparel, jewelry, decorations, home goods, artwork, sweets, and more being offered throughout the venue.
And sprinkled throughout the shopping options are plenty of food and drink opportunities, including the warm Glühwein (mulled wine) which comes in a take-home Christmas Village mug, boozy hot chocolate, strudel and more.
”We’re gearing up for a festive season, and we have some cozy surprises in store for the North Broad section,” said Christmas Village in Philadelphia President Thomas Bauer in a statement.
“We are not only thankful for the families creating cherished memories at our market, but also for the unwavering support of the City of Philadelphia, which plays a vital role in bringing the magic and wonder of Christmas Village in Philadelphia presented by Bank of America to life. The enthusiasm of the vendors is greater than ever and we’re looking forward to welcoming all guests.”
The special preview weekend for the seasonal installation kicked off on Nov. 18 and 19, and already, some Philadelphians have taken in the local and international merchants and artists who offer high-quality, lovingly handcrafted gifts. All of the creatives have set up shop in colorful tents and wooden cottages around Philadelphia’s famous Love Park, City Hall’s courtyard, and the North Broad section.
2023’s Christmas Village will also include the Wish Wall, a festive light installation inside the open-air outdoor seating and beer garden, plus themed weekdays and weekends. Philadelphians can also expect weekday tastings from Boardroom Spirits and live music during some evenings and most of the day on the weekends while there. Coming up, locals can visit during Family Weekend (Dec. 2 and 3) and take pictures with princesses, superheroes and Christmas Village’s very own mascot, Phil the Reindeer. A full list of stand-out themed dates and events can be found online.
“It’s nearly the Most Wonderful Time of the Year. Philadelphia’s holiday season is a joyous time for Philadelphia and Christmas Village is a pivotal part of the city’s traditions,” finished Bank of America Greater Philadelphia President Jim Dever in a statement. “This seasonal experience not only creates lasting family memories but encourages all to support our local arts and small business vendors during the holiday season.”
Christmas Village will officially open for the season on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 23. Anyone interested can follow @philachristmas on Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, and Instagram or visit philachristmas.com for more information.