Hudson’s liveliest, largest, and most colorful event of the year, celebrating 20 years!
Saturday, December 3, 2016
5–8pm Rain, Snow, or Shine!
On Saturday, December 3rd the Hudson Opera House will celebrate the 20th annual Winter Walk. Twice voted “Best Community Winter Event of the Year,” Winter Walk transforms Hudson’s mile-long main street into a holiday wonderland. For one magical evening, thousands of area locals and visitors from throughout the region flock to our city to enjoy free, family-friendly festivities including a musical parade, live reindeer, a fireworks show, and hundreds of performers throughout town, including carolers, fire-throwing jugglers, and one saxophone-playing Santa Claus.
Winter Walk begins at 5pm with Mr. & Mrs. Santa Claus leading the Santa parade from the Hudson Opera House to City Hall, as well the Hudson-debut of Phil Kline’s long-running holiday parade and musical extravaganza Unsilent Night, stepping off from Front and Warren Streets. Winter Walk concludes at 8pm with a mesmerizing firework display at Promenade Hill. Upwards of 20,000 people, young and old, will be in attendance to celebrate this year’s Winter Walk.
5:00pm— Santa Parade kicks off the festivities from the Hudson Opera House
5:00pm— Phil Kline’s UNSILENT NIGHT steps off from the foot of Warren Street at Front Street
5:45pm— UNSILENT NIGHT culminates at the 7th Street Park
8:00pm— Fireworks at Promenade Hill
In honor of the anniversary of this magical and beloved community event, a slew of new and exciting events will take place.
WHAT'S NEW FOR 2016:
Music – Phil Kline’s Unsilent Night takes visitors from the waterfront to the top of Warren Street
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Winter Walk, the Hudson Opera House is very proud to present the Hudson-debut of Unsilent Night, a magical community musical parade composed by Phil Kline. Participants walk together as Kline’s original four-part composition plays from their personal devices, creating a unique and luminous soundscape (“one of the loveliest communal new-music experiences you’ll ever encounter” – Time Out). Kline himself will conduct the December 3rd event, meeting revelers at Basilica Hudson for a 4pm prep. Participants will be assigned their parts to play through their own portable sound system before proceeding to Front and Warren Street for the 5pm step off. The parade leads us to the 7th Street Park for its crescendo, and will be broadcast live on Wave Farm’s WGXC 90.7FM and streamed online at wgxc.org
New Interiors Decorating Contest and Coordination
The annual Window Decorating Contest will be augmented with the addition of a brand-new “Best of” Interiors Contest. Our anonymous judges will be out and about, evaluating participating locations on Wednesday, November 23, and the winner will be announced via press release and social media over Thanksgiving weekend. Deadline for exterior window displays will remain 5pm on Friday, December 2.
Hudson Business Coalition block captains are working to coordinate color themes for every block. It’s always impressive to see the time and effort that shop owners put into decorating their windows, and this year, we’re inviting all shop and building owners to go all out!
Special 20th-Anniversary Promotion – Dining and Shopping Specials with the Hudson Business Coalition
To fortify visitors for some serious shopping and to alleviate the evening dinner rush, many Hudson restaurants and food establishments are offering a twenty-dollar, 20th-anniversary specials beginning at noon the day of Winter Walk. Likewise, shops are invited to feature $20 gifts or other in-store activities. The Hudson Opera House, together with HBC, will be coordinating and promoting this effort— look to the Hudson Opera House website and on social media in the weeks leading up to Winter Walk for more details!
Etsy Craft Party + Hudson River Exchange Winter Market
Discover locally made gifts and make your own Winter Walk Craft Party hat to wear in the parade! Etsy and Hudson River Exchange are delighted to collaboratively bring creativity and crafting to Winter Walk! Etsy’s Craft Party is the company’s way of simultaneously celebrating the spirit of making and connecting with the local community. Join them and get crafty by making your very own Winter Walk Craft! They’ll supply the paper, glitter, googly eyes, pipe cleaners and ribbons; you bring the creativity. Free of charge and open to all ages.
The Hudson River Exchange Winter Market is a celebration of small businesses and features one-of-a-kind gifts curated by Hudson River Exchange showcasing 15 local makers + collectors. Hudson River Exchange creates vibrant marketplaces to provide the community a place to connect with their talented friends and neighbors making high quality handcrafted goods and collecting unique finds.
Both the Etsy Craft Party and Hudson River Exchange Winter Market will be located at the Etsy offices at Prison Alley at N 4th St., and will be open to the public from 12pm-8pm.
Tasty Delights from Local Food Trucks!
For the first time ever, we will be welcoming food trucks to Winter Walk! Confirmed in attendance will be the Lekker Food Truck and the Clocktower Grill’s Truck. Be sure to look for them below 3rd Street and at the 7th Street Park.
MORE NEW ADDITIONS AND SOME RETURNING FAVORITES
The elves have been hard at work on Santa’s Village, sprucing up the huts with new decorations and appointing them with new lighting. We’re thrilled to have the help of both Etsy and Questar III, together with the City of Hudson, in revitalizing Santa’s Village at the 7th St. Park.
The Diamond Opera Theater, in association with the Hudson Opera House, will be presenting a free performance of Engelbert Humperdinck’s enchanting fairy tale opera, Hansel and Gretel, at the Christ Church Episcopal (431 Union Street) at 2:30pm.
Visit the beloved Bailiwick Ranch petting zoo, hop a free ride on the horse-drawn carriage, visit with the ribbon-adorned miniature horses, and be sure to visit all the reindeer in Santa’s stable.
Seano the Shakespearean Clown has been busy this fall working with students at Montgomery C. Smith School and will be leading their performance at Berkshire Bank (561 Warren Street) at 6:30pm. Before and after, be sure to catch the Abby Lappen trio and join bank employees in craftmaking activities. Likewise, Hudson’s own Kenneth Polinskie, an internationally recognized master of hand papermaking and pulp painting, is leading free workshops at the Hudson Opera House (Wednesdays, Nov. 2-20th), for kids aged 7-14 to make their own paper angels, wreaths, sculptures, and ornaments to decorate the Hudson Opera House.
Be sure to visit the D-A-N-C-E program curated by Elena Mosley at the Hudson Youth Center, and the Festival of Wreaths at the John L. Edwards Primary School.
Businesses that are part of Belo 3rd are hosting the Turnquist Photo Booth, where you can get your seasonal family photos taken just in time for your holiday cards!
On the street, be sure to look out for singers from the Canaan Chorale, celebrating their 20th anniversary performing at Winter Walk, and the Orcapelicans from Bard celebrating their 2nd Winter Walk. St. Jullian’s Jugglers will be gracing the city with their acrobatic, fire throwing antics. Crazy Christine the Balloon Queen will be here, along with Sean the Prankster Magician, and Winter Walk favorites Holly, Andy & Ivy, Sax-o-Claus, and Roger the Jester.
PLEASE JOIN US IN THANKING OUR SPONSORS
Winter Walk wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of our many sponsors and supporters, and a special thanks to this year’s returning grand sponsor, Taconic. Thank you to the City of Hudson, the Common Council’s Arts, Entertainment, and Tourism committee, the Hudson City Police Department, the Hudson Fire Department, and the Department of Public Works for their support and tireless efforts to make Winter Walk run smoothly. Additional thanks to the CEDC, Columbia Memorial Health, Etsy, Fingar Insurance, and the Mac-Haydn Theatre for their generous support. To those celebrating their own business anniversaries the night of Winter Walk, including The Bees Knees, Iron Horse Cigar Depot, and Talbott & Arding– we wish you a very happy anniversary! This night belongs to all of you.
PARKING AND TRAFFIC
All of Warren Street, from Front Street to 8th Street, will be closed to traffic and parking during Winter Walk from 5-8pm. Only Worth/Prospect Avenue and Front Street will be used for north and south-bound traffic. Parking and traffic in all alleys will be restricted to emergency vehicles only. All other cars will be towed at the owner’s expense.
Trucks will be re-routed around the city for the evening. Cars can use all open entry points to the City, but Warren Street will be closed to all traffic from 5-8pm.
All City municipal parking lots will be available for parking. This includes lots on Warren, Union and Warren Streets, the John L. Edwards Elementary School, the Consolidated Firehouse at 7th and Washington, and the waterfront lots at the Henry Hudson Riverfront Park. All County lots on Columbia and State Streets will also be available. Paid parking is available at the hospital’s parking garage at the top of Columbia Street and at the Amtrak long-term parking lot on Front Street, across from the station.
Please do not park in privately-owned lots without permission from the owner. We recommend that you dress warmly and arrive early to secure a parking spot.