There’s no place like home for the holidays, but there’s no place like Lackawanna County to get you in the holiday spirit. The Electric City kicks it up a few watts with beautiful holiday light displays and events. From one end of the county to the other, you will find sights, sounds, and holiday fun that would make Charles Dickens proud.
NORTH POLE LIMITED
Experience an old-fashioned hour-long holiday train excursion through Steamtown National Historic Site's Scranton Yards and Nay Aug Park, during which Santa will visit with each family.
All proceeds from ticket sales will support The Iron Horse Society, a 501c3 non-profit in its mission to promote the knowledge, education, and preservation of railroad heritage at Steamtown National Historic Site for generations to come.
Photo courtesy of Dennis A. Livesey
THE NORTH POLE LIMITED encourages visitors to wear their pajamas. Wear your walking shoes! The park is separated into 3 sections: the History Museum, the Roundhouse, and the Technology Museum.
HOLIDAY LIGHTS DISPLAYS
Lackawanna County lights up the night with sparkling holiday scenery. Travel along the lighted path at Nay Aug Park and marvel at the nostalgic displays of holiday cheer! The local residents open their yards to the public for scenic holiday walkthroughs and interactive displays. Visit the 3 houses bringing holiday magic to young and old alike: Peckville Christmas House, 1130 Marion St., Peckville | Christmas Lights House, 300 Prospect Ave, Scranton | Holiday House, 638 Moosic St, Scranton.
THE HOLIDAY LIGHT DISPLAYS are free, but donations are welcome! Visitors should plan 30 minutes – 1 hour per location. The PECKVILLE CHRISTMAS HOUSE is approximately 15 minutes from NAY AUG PARK, but the Scranton houses are approximately 3 minutes from the park. Visitors can walk or drive through each display. Nay Aug Park also offers horse-drawn carriage rides for an extra special experience!
NEPA PHILHARMONIC HOLIDAY CONCERT
Ring in the holidays with your favorite songs, special guest performances, and a visit from you-know-who! What better way to get into the holiday spirit than with the NEPA Philharmonic? Tickets can be purchased online with the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic.
THE NEPA PHILHARMONIC is performed in multiple theaters; make sure to choose the historic Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple!
Santa on the Trolley
The Electric City Trolley Station & Museum commemorates the first successfully operational electric-powered streetcar system in the United States. Climb aboard an authentic 1926 or 1932 trolley for a 5 ½ mile trip over Roaring Brook through the mile-long tunnel and along the original Laurel Line. Santa joins you on your excursions for a holiday-themed ride!
The ELECTRIC CITY TROLLEY MUSEUM is self-guided, but groups can reserve a tour guide in advance. Plan to tour the museum for 1 ½ hours. The trolley excursion is approximately 45 minutes and takes you to their Restoration Shop on Montage Mountain.
The classic holiday story of The Nutcracker has been a traditional performance presented by The Ballet Theatre of Scranton for over 40 years. It has been cited by Dance Magazine as the only production of its kind in the United States, awarded first place for the Pocono Northeast Award, and awarded the Hometown Star SAGE Award. It has entertained over 350,000 people including educational performances to over 12,000 school students.
THE NUTCRACKER is a free event but call ahead to reserve group seating.
LACKAWANNA WINTER MARKET
The Lackawanna Winter Market creates a magical holiday vendor village at Courthouse Square in Downtown Scranton and offers a weekend filled with music, food, fun, and lots of unique shopping, including many handmade creative vendors! It kicks off on December's First Friday, with the Courthouse Christmas tree lighting at 6:00 PM.
The WINTER MARKET features dozens of musicians throughout the day. The Lackawanna Historical Society provides walking tours of downtown Scranton. The holidays are a beautiful time to see the architecture of downtown Scranton.
Deck the Downtown
Window shopping is magical and merry in the Business District of downtown Scranton with our annual tradition of the Holiday Window Decorating Showcase. Visitors can marvel at the creativity, innovation, and beauty of designs from over 50 businesses. A secret panel of judges will award prizes in multiple categories including Most Retro, Best Use of Recycled Materials, Most Glamorous, and of course, Most Scrantastic amongst others!
THE HOLIDAY WINDOW DECORATING SHOWCASE is a free event! Grab a hot chocolate from one of the local coffee shops downtown. Most windows are fully decorated by the 2nd week in December. The Scranton Tomorrow organization manages the event and offers a map of all the businesses participating in the contest.
GERTRUDE HAWK CHOCOLATES
This family-owned Scranton business began in 1936 when Gertrude Hawk decided to use her chocolate-making skills to supplement her family’s income. Since then, it has been passed down through the generations and developed into 60+ retail stores, with the factory still located in Lackawanna County. Guests can visit any of the Gertrude Hawk Chocolates locations to sample their treats!
GERTRUDE HAWK CHOCOLATES offers an Open House & Factory Tour only once a year in November. Holiday Smidgens are the perfect stocking stuffer and come in multiple flavors.