Boston’s Freedom Trail and Paso Robles, CA this holiday season

I’m starting to get press releases on various holiday-themed activities, mostly Christmas ones. Here are a couple I thought were interesting:

Boston, MA:

One of the best times to stroll the Freedom Trail is during the holidays, when the streets are sparkling and the window displays enticing. Visitors can enjoy this festive atmosphere once again on The Freedom Trail Foundation’s Historic Holiday Stroll. This merry 90-minute tour is offered Thursday through Sunday at 3:30pm beginning November 17 through January 2012.

Led by a costumed tour guide dressed in 19th century Dickensian garb, visitors learn how holiday traditions evolved in Boston while experiencing highlights of the American Revolution. The tour concludes with the chance to warm your bones with hot chocolate, tea, or wine and Boston Crème Pie offered at the historic Omni Parker House Hotel. Guests can also take advantage of great shopping opportunities at one of the museum stores, where visitors will enjoy 10 – 20% off “traditional” gifts for loved ones or themselves at three Freedom Trail sites – Old South Meeting House, Old State House (3 locations) and Old North Church.

“This tour is a wonderful way to experience revolutionary history on the Freedom Trail during the off-season,” said Mimi La Camera, President of The Freedom Trail Foundation. “History comes alive, especially during the holidays when the atmosphere in Boston is reminiscent of the 19th century. The Holiday Stroll makes visitors feel like characters in ‘A Christmas Carol’ set against the unique backdrop of the Freedom Trail and the American Revolution.”

The Historic Holiday Stroll is offered to the public Thursday through Sunday (days can be arranged for a private tour, with some limitations) and begins at the Bostix Booth at Faneuil Hall at 3:30pm.* The cost is $30 for adults and $20 for children and includes a 90 minute historic tour, shopping discounts, and refreshments at the Omni Parker House. Price also includes a $1 donation to the Freedom Trail Foundation Preservation Fund. Tickets can be purchased online at TheFreedomTrail.org or by calling 617 – 357 – 8300. Reservations are required 25 hours in advance.

Having been to Boston in winter, there will most likely be snow for the holidays but unless it’s very fresh it may not be the prettiest snow around. At this next place you’re probably not looking at a white Christmas:

Paso Robles, CA:

Delight in holiday pleasures with a getaway to festive Paso Robles this winter season. Nestled in the Central California Coast midway between Los Angles and San Francisco, visitors will enjoy the ideal holiday respite complete with Victorian homes dressed in dazzling lights, traditional caroling and a spectacular tree lighting ceremony. Shoppers will find the perfect gifts as they stroll around charming downtown filled with local artisan shops featuring gourmet food items, handicrafts and artwork.

Below is a roundup of not-to-miss holiday events. Visitors can plan their stay around the following activities, or just come to relax. For more information on attractions, dining and lodging, visit www.travelpaso.com. For the latest news, visit http://blog.travelpaso.com or follow us on twitter @travelpaso.

– NOVEMBER –

11/10 – 11/13: Paderewski Festival

Various Venues

Solo piano and chamber music concerts, celebrations of local young musicians, an exhibit of Paderewski memorabilia and lectures by experts are planned for the famous composer’s 150th birthday. For more information and a schedule of events visit www.paderewskifest.com.

11/12: Elegant Evening Downtown (free!)

Downtown Paso Robles, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Kick-off the holiday season with an elegant evening strolling and shopping at downtown merchants while enjoying local cuisine and wines. For more information call (805) 238-4103 or visit www.pasoroblesdowntown.org.

11/25: Downtown Lighting Ceremony (free!)

Downtown Paso Robles, 5:30 p.m.

Mrs. Claus will officially kick off the holiday season when she lights the holiday tree in all its glory. Enjoy caroling, live music, cookies and hot chocolate. For more information call (805) 238-4103 or visit www.pasoroblesdowntown.org.

– DECEMBER –

12/3: Christmas Light Parade (free!)

10th & Spring Streets, 7 p.m.

Grab some warm blankets and chairs and head downtown to enjoy the sights of twinkling lights and spectacular floats. You don’t want to miss the parade this holiday season featuring local establishments and of course, Santa Claus who is taking time off from his busy toy making schedule to visit Paso Robles. For more information call (805) 238-4103 or visit www.pasoroblesdowntown.org.

12/10: Vine St. Victorian Showcase (free!)

Vine Street between 8th to 21st Streets, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Thirteen blocks of Vine Street in Downtown Paso Robles close down for the night as the crowds of 15,000 plus roam up and down this exhilarating street, featuring beautifully restored Victorian houses, adorned with sparkling Christmas lights and decorations galore. For more information call (805) 238-4103 or visit www.pasoroblesdowntown.org.

12/17: Victorian Teddy Bear Tea

Paso Robles Golf Club, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Grab those beloved teddy bears and head over to the Paso Robles Golf Club for tea and cookies. This is a great holiday treat for children and adults alike. Tickets are $7 for children and $13 for adults. Seating is limited. For more information call (805) 238 – 4103 or visit www.pasoroblesdowntown.org.

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