Holidays in the City Returns for a Third Year in Downtown Syracuse

Dec 6, 2019

Holidays In The City at Clinton Square
Credit John Smith/WAER News

The holidays are upon us in Syracuse and this weekend an event aims to get shoppers and families to Downtown Syracuse.  The third annual “Holidays in the City” on Saturday is filled with activities, contests and decorations to entice people to experience what the city offers this time of year.  Downtown Committee Executive Director, Merike Treier, says there’s a list of events and exhibits families can expect throughout Saturday’s festivities. 

“At 5 pm this Saturday there’s a light up Hanover Square moment where you’ll have the holiday lights out you have that special holiday feeling, but also there is a special performance at St Paul’s Cathedral. The OHA has their exhibit that will be open. Art Mart and Shopping happens on Salina Street as well as the gingerbread gallery at the Erie Canal Museum, and some family friendly activities at the central library.”

Years ago, Downtown Syracuse was the place for holiday shopping and gathering before large malls were built.  But with the addition of shops and restaurants in the past two decades, there’s plenty to offer. Treier believes that downtown holiday traditions have always remained a constant throughout the years. 

“Downtown is where a lot that tends to takes place, and being able to go ice skating at an outdoor ice rink is a just a very magical experience now that the tree has been lit. Then having that experience with the live reindeer in Hanover Square, but then also having dozens of downtown businesses offering specials, again to be part of that festive holiday spirit, and show off whether it’s the product or the food that they’re known for, is something that just helps to open people’s eyes to the variety of experiences available here in Downtown Syracuse.”

Treier adds while walking to events, don’t forget to take advantage of the holiday specials at shops and restaurants.  If you’re not a fan of walking, no worries there. This year you’ll have the option of riding a trolley to different locations to sightsee, shop or grab a bite to eat. Also, feel free to marvel at the window wonderland display in front of the businesses. You will have the opportunity to vote for your favorite. For more information on Holidays In The City, including a complete listing of events, please visit, and subscribe to their holiday newsletter.