Gingerbread festival, candlelight tours part of festivities

1. Gingerbread Festival

The annual Gingerbread Festival is scheduled 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Crystal Coast Civic Center in Morehead City.

The free event includes festive displays, the gingerbread houses and decked out crab pot trees, along with music from 4 to 5 p.m. each day along with a children’s craft area on Saturday and demonstrations.

Ticketed events include a preview party on Friday, along with Cookies and Cocoa with Santa on Sunday.

The event supports the Crystal Coast Hospice House in Morehead City.

For more information, call 808-2244 or go online to www.cchhnc.org.

2. Christmas Candlelight Tour

The Beaufort Historical Association has scheduled its Christmas Candlelight Tour from 5 to 8 p.m. on Saturday.

The event includes tours of some of Beaufort’s private historic homes, inns, bed and breakfasts and churches decorated in holiday splendor.

The cost is $16 per person.

For more information, call 728-5225 or go online to www.beauforthistoricsite.org.

3. Santa by the Sea

Santa by the Sea is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday at the N.C. Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores.

Visitors can make holiday cards and ornaments while enjoying special treats and games at the decorated aquarium. Tickets include a take-home photo of each child 12 and under with Santa.

For an additional fee, a snow-filled sledding area will be available.

For more information, call 247-4003 or go online to www.ncaquariums.com/pine-knoll-shores.

4. Tryon Palace Candlelight

Tryon Palace’s Candlelight is a signature holiday tradition and one of the palace’s top events every year.

It is held over two Saturday nights — this year on Saturday and again Dec. 16 — beginning at 4:30 p.m.

Tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for youth, with Tryon Palace Foundation members paying $18 admission for adults and $8 for youth.

Inspired by traditions of giving that date back to the colonial period, “Seasons of Giving” brings Candlelight to Tryon Palace with decorations inspired by the 12 Days of Christmas, historic characters in period clothing, and holiday vignettes spanning across three centuries.

For more information, call 639-3524 or go online to www.tryonpalace.org.

5. Crystal Coast Choral Society

The Crystal Coast Choral Society, under the direction of Finley Woolston, has scheduled its annual holiday concerts called Music of the Christmas Season.

The concerts will feature Benjamin Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols, accompanied by harpist, Vonda Darr. The concert will also include several smaller sacred works of the season as well as some seasonal favorites.

Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Saturday at All Saints Anglican Church, 292 McCabe Road, Newport and 3 p.m. Sunday at Swansboro United Methodist Church, 665 West Corbett Avenue (N.C. 24) in Swansboro.

Tickets are $10 in advance from choral society members or at the door.

For more information, call 910-358-2997 or email finley@ec.rr.com.