What’s on for Christmas and New Year

Here’s a round-up of events leading up to and over the Christmas and New Year period.

We can’t include everything here, so be sure to keep a look out for local events where you live, too.

If you are organising a major event in North Yorkshire, please tell us and we’ll do our best to include it in a future issue. Just email yny@northyorks.gov.uk.

Until 17 December

Harrogate’s Christmas Market continues in the town centre with festive shopping opportunities from an eclectic mix of local traders and traditional European Christmas stalls. Among the many stalls and entertainments will be arts and crafts from artisan creators, mouth-watering treats to sample or buy, festive decorations and unique gift ideas. Music and entertainment will add to the Christmas atmosphere and the Christmas lights will be on.

Among stallholders at the market will be The Local Lotto, a community lottery managed by North Yorkshire Council. Fifty pence from every £1 ticket goes to the local causes chosen by the player. Ten pence goes into the Local Fund for the Harrogate area, a community fund that provides funding opportunities twice a year to community groups through an open grant application process. Each day, a different local organisation will occupy The Local Lotto stall.

Crescent Gardens in Harrogate will take on a fairground feel again this year, but bigger and better.  As well as a carousel and a collection of small rides for tiny tots, Christmas in Crescent Gardens will feature an outdoor ice-skating rink to coincide with the Christmas market for the first time. The ice rink will remain until 7 January.

Until 23 December

Scarborough Lights is the first event in the Scarborough Fair programme and sees the whole town sparkle and shine through to 23 December, with many different light installations and events across various venues, with a combination of free and ticketed events.

Until 23 December

Black Five steam locomotive No. 45407, The Lancashire Fusilier, has returned to Leeming Bar. The locomotive is the star of the railway’s Christmas event, The Polar Express Train Ride, which will transport 60,000 passengers on a magical interactive journey to the North Pole from 10 November to 23 December. Between Christmas and New Year, the railway will operate two days of steam services between Leeming Bar and Leyburn on December 29 and 30 and a one-day diesel service on 28 December. Find more information about the services and book here, phone 01677 425 805 or email admin@wensleydalerailway.com

Until 30 December

Beauty and the Beast at Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough. A Christmas show packed full of songs, silliness and festive fun.

9 December

Vintage Christmas Fair, The Station, Richmond. 10am to 4pm. Festive wares for home decor and the Christmas table repurposed vintage making unique gifts, and unusual antique finds. Entry is free.

Festive Baubles, needle felting workshop, The Station, Richmond, 1.30pm to 4pm. Learn how to decorate the plain felted balls provided, using felting needles, wool and ribbons. Materials provided will produce two baubles per participant, which can be used to decorate your Christmas tree or as a handmade gift. Costs £35 per person.

Christmas Together at St Matthew's Church, Leyburn, 2pm. Wensleydale Community Gospel Choir, the Dales Community Pop Choir and the Leyburn Jazz Collective come together to celebrate the joy of music with a festive sing-along concert.

Carolling Around Europe, St Mary's Church, Richmond, from 6.30pm. Join the Station Singers’ three choirs for an evening’s entertainment on a festive journey around Europe. Tickets cost £10.

Christmas Jazz Night, The Station, Richmond, from 7pm. Enjoy the smooth sounds of the Joseph Carville Trio at the Station Cafe and Bar, with a two-course Christmas meal. The cost is £27.50 per person, excluding drinks. Booking is essential.

Artisan market, Easingwold, with locally produced arts and crafts, food and drink, from 10am to 2pm.

Harrogate Choral Society presents Handel’s Messiah in the Royal Hall, Harrogate, at 7pm. Conducted by David Lawrence with the National Festival Orchestra and soloists Sarah Fox, soprano; Gaynor Keeble, mezzo; James Micklethwaite, tenor; and Andrew Mayor, bass. Tickets are priced at £25 and £18 (with £5 seats for students and under-16s).

Bach Christmas Oratorio at Ripon Cathedral by Ripon Choral Society. 7.30pm, tickets £25. 

Pig Race at Sessay Village Hall, from 6pm. A fun night for all the family, eight races for eight cuddly electronic pigs. Adults £5 pre-booked, £6 on the night, including pie and pea supper, children £1, including hotdog.

Thirsk RBL Band Concert at Thirsk and Sowerby Town Hall, 7.30pm. A free festive music concert by the British Legion Brass Band, conducted by Clare Winter and Deborah Price. Refreshments. 7.30pm. Free of charge, donation is appreciated. 

9 and 10 December

Harmby Artisan Christmas Market, Harmby Village Hall, Harmby, 9.30am to 4pm. More than 25 stalls selling a wide range of artisan gifts.

10 December

Musicality, Richmond Ladies’ Choir carol concert, Bellerby Memorial Hall, 7.30pm. Tickets cost £6 in advance, £8 on the night. Price includes refreshments during the interval.

Northallerton Christmas with live entertainment, 11am to 6pm, with Santa’s grotto, donkey rides, an artisan market, craft fair, street food and festive drinks. The farmers market will be in the Applegarth car park and the craft fair in the Lower Town Hall. The High Street will be closed to motorists.

Handel's Messiah at Ampleforth College, 7.30pm, with the Schola Cantorum of Ampleforth College and the Ampleforth and Ryedale Concert Choir, tickets £6 to £24. 

Christmas Outdoor Market at Ripley Castle. The market is held in the Castle Courtyard and features local and speciality producers and makers, and also free access to Ripley Castle’s estate grounds and gardens.

Light up a life, Ripon Cathedral. Dedicate a light to remember someone special, while supporting your local hospice, 3.30pm.

Artisan market, Wetherby, 10am to 3pm.

11 December

Tango Calor Trio at Holy Trinity Church, Ripon. A sparkling South American prologue to Christmas, 7.30pm. £20, children free, student £5. 

12 December

Christmas Quiz Night, The Black Bull, Moulton, 7.30pm. £3 per person. Proceeds to Herriot Hospice.

Royal Opera House: The Nutcracker (12A) at The Forum, Northallerton, 7.15pm. Join Clara at a delightful Christmas Eve party that becomes a magical adventure, adult ticket £16, child £10, senior £13. 

13 December

Richmond Town Council’s Annual Christmas carol concert, St Mary Church, Richmond, 7pm, featuring Leyburn Band and local schools.

15 December

Hawes Christmas Charity Concert with Hawes Silver Band and the Aysgarth Singers, The Market Hall, Hawes, from 7.30pm. An evening of carols and Christmas music.

A Magical Christmas Concert, Thoralby Village Hall, 7.30pm. BlueBoxt Creative present A Magical Christmas, a selection of classic hits and festive favourites for all ages. Ticket prices vary.

16 December

The Station Christmas Food and Drink Fair, The Station, Richmond, 10am to 4pm, with locally produced food and drink.

A Magical Christmas Concert, Leyburn Arts and Community Centre, 6.30pm. BlueBoxt Creative present A Magical Christmas, a selection of classic hits and festive favourites for all ages. Ticket prices vary. Swing Into Christmas, Royal Hall, Harrogate, 7pm. Celebrate the festive season in style with the vocalists and instrumentalists of Down for the Count Orchestra as they recreate the music of Nat ‘King’ Cole, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra and many more.

Made in Motor City at Masham Town Hall, 8pm. Made in Motor-City aim to recreate the classic music and sounds created by Tamla-Motown in Detroit during the 1960s and ’70s. The eight-piece band includes high-quality musicians dedicated to recreating authentically the sounds of the Motor City, fronted by three incredible female vocalists.

Northallerton Male Voice Choir at The Forum, Northallerton, 3pm and 7.30pm, singing a selection of Christmas songs with guests the Easington Colliery Band, all tickets £12.

17 December

Reeth Brass Band, The Station, Richmond, 10.30am to noon.

Artisan market, Thirsk Market Place, 10am to 3pm, with locally produced arts and crafts, food and drink. 

18 December

Leyburn Band Christmas Concert and Fireworks Display, The Garden Rooms at Tennants, Leyburn, 6.30pm. Adults £14, children (aged 12 and under) £5.

19 December

Actor Dominic Gerrard brings his five-star one-man show of A Christmas Carol to Harrogate. Dominic is the host of the podcast, Charles Dickens: A Brain on Fire. The performance takes place on the 180th anniversary of the publication of A Christmas Carol. The one-man show is directed by Tim Carroll, a Tony Award winner who has directed on Broadway. It takes place at Harrogate’s Wesley Centre. Donations to the Harrogate Homeless Project can be made when booking. There will be performances at 2pm and 7.30pm.

21 to 24 December

Santa Rocks: Magical Family Santamime, The Forum, Northallerton, 10am, 1pm and 6.30pm each day. A magical family Santamime. Santa is busy getting ready for the annual Snow Ball. All is going well until the wicked Jack Frost zaps the North Pole of all its festive cheer! All tickets £11. 

22 December

Robin Hood, the modern Christmas panto, at Masham Town Hall, 2.30pm. An hour of fun and audience participation from the team behind last year's Cinderella. Same Difference Arts presents their modern take on a favourite classic, adding a sprinkle of panto magic and turning it into an inclusive, festive treat for all the family. All tickets £7, available at Masham Community Office or 01765 680200.

Carols at Northallerton Methodist Church, 7pm. This is a ticketed event, but free tickets can be booked through church stewards or by calling 01609 776590. There will be a collection for Action for Children.

23 December

Festive Foraging, foraging workshop and walk in Richmond, 1.30 to 4pm, a three-hour workshop with a foraging expert, focusing on winter species with a festive twist, wild mulled wine, and a walk. £35 per person.

Supper with Santa, The Station Café Bar, Richmond, 4.30pm and 5pm. Enjoy a two-course meal as you soak up the festive atmosphere and prepare for the arrival of a very special guest! Children aged one to 12 will receive a small gift from Father Christmas. £22.50 per person.

Fanfare for Christmas with Brighouse and Rastrick Band and Harrogate Gilbert and Sullivan Society, The Royal Hall, Harrogate, 6pm. Tickets from the box office on 01423 502116 or on the Harrogate Theatre website.

26 December

Boxing Day Football Match and Raft Race, South Bay Beach, Scarborough, football match 10.30am, raft race 12.30pm. These traditional annual sporting events are in aid of the Fisherman and Firemen Charity fund. Each year crowds gather to witness the fishermen versus the firemen football match followed by the hilarious fancy dress ‘crazy’ raft race from the harbour quayside.

Until 7 January

Rapunzel at the Georgian Theatre Royal, Richmond, with amazing song and dance routines, fantastic sets and special effects, huge amounts of laughter, plenty of audience participation and those two essential elements - knitting and Tunnock's teacakes!

And there’s more…

We can’t include everything that is happening, but you can find more events on these websites:

While every care is taken to ensure the information provided in this newsletter is correct at the time of publishing, information and event details provided by third parties may be subject to change.