OLANA Winter Solstice Event | What’s happening in the Capital District

OLANA Winter Solstice Event

*The event has already taken place on this date: Sat, 12/16/2023
Celebrate the changing of the seasons during this special community day from 1 pm - 5 pm on Saturday, December 16. Join us at Olana State Historic Site for a series of free opportunities to experience the Hudson Valley‘s beautiful winter landscape and explore some of the cultures and countries that inspired the artist Frederic Church and his family! Did you know Church was deeply inspired by winters in Mexico, his travels to Jamaica and South America, and visits he and his family made to countries in the Middle East? Welcome the winter season and learn more about Olana’s global influence during this special community celebration! Enjoy free access to Olana’s historic interiors, watch the sunset and purchase refreshments from Frankie’s nomadic bar and coffee shop, take part in free activities and games led by Olana educators and partners, listen to live music by Heard World Jazz, and visit with everyone’s favorite miniature donkey, Hank, back by popular demand!

Please help us keep this calendar up to date! If this activity is sold out, canceled, or otherwise needs alteration, email mindy@kidsoutandabout.com so we can update it immediately. If you have a question about the activity itself, please contact the organization administrator listed below.



Holiday Shopping at the OLANA Museum Store

Enjoy extended holiday shopping hours at the Olana store where you can purchase last minute holiday gifts, souvenirs, and other specialty items. The museum store will be open for extended hours until 5pm.

Holiday Photos with Hank the Miniature Donkey and Friends!

Drop by to say hi and take a holiday photo with everyone’s favorite miniature donkey, Hank and some of his special friends! Learn more about the Church family’s own donkeys, which were used to travel throughout the site on Olana’s historic carriage roads. Please note, visitors with dogs will be asked to view Hank from outside a small perimeter for safety reasons. Drop in on the East Lawn; no registration necessary.

Games and Activities

Join The Olana Partnership educators for artmaking activities inspired by Olana’s landscape and the winter season. Stop by for special games and fun for the whole family. Drop in on the East Lawn; no registration required.

Refreshments by Frankie’s Hudson Valley

Frankie’s mobile bar will be selling coffee, hot chocolate, special cocktails, and festive seasonal drinks. Warm up and enjoy Olana’s spectacular winter views!

Special Indoor Performances with Heard World Jazz

Join us for a series of short indoor performances in the main house with Heard World Jazz to start the day’s celebration. During each short performance, participants will get the chance to enjoy a live short performance from the main house interiors and take in Heard World’s vibrant sound incorporating influences from West Africa, Brazil, the Caribbean and beyond. Due to space constraints, each performance will be limited to 12 people and will include 2-3 songs. FREE; performances at 1:00, 1:15, 1:30 and 1:45
Registration Required and space extremely limited.

Bilingual Storytime with the Hudson Area Library

Kickoff our celebration of winter around the world with a special Bilingual Storytime at Olana! This story hour will be led by Sonia Cintron, who leads the Hudson Area Library’s weekly Bilingual Storytime for kids and their families. Join Sonia for lively tales of the season in English and Spanish and learn more about winter traditions throughout the world. Drop in on the East Lawn; no registration necessary.

Free Historic Interiors Access

Discover the global treasures of Olana’s Main House interior in your own time for free during this special community event. Enjoy free access to Olana’s historic interiors during this self-guided opportunity.

House entry will be available on a first come first served basis beginning at 2:00pm. Last house entry will be at 4:00pm.

Outdoor Performance with Heard World Jazz Band

Enjoy Heard World’s energetic and upbeat music around the bonfire for this special, free, drop in outdoor performance. Together for 15 years, Heard is a collective of musicians with a passion for world music, jazz and improvisation. Their vibrant sound incorporates global influences to get you up and dancing and is sure to warm you up during this winter celebration! Drop in on the East Lawn; no registration necessary.

*Times, dates, and prices of any activity posted to our calendars are subject to change. Please be sure to click through directly to the organization’s website to verify.


5720 State Route 9G
Hudson, NY, 12534
United States


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The event has already taken place on this date: 
1-5 pm


All Ages