Country fairs, music and food festivals in New England are fun for families

New England fairs and festivals offer affordable, family friendly fun year round. Discover the newest art, crafts, music, and film. Enjoy live blues, folk, bluegrass, and jazz music. Shop for handmade art and crafts and find vendors selling celebrated New England food like maple syrup, blueberries, cheeses, ice cream, seafood, barbecue, craft beer and wine. Take a fun peek into world cultures at Scottish, Celtic, Italian, Portuguese, Asian, and French Canadian celebrations. Classic cars, books, and glowing hot air balloons are some of New England’s favorite festival treasures.

To find more events, visit our Events Calendar.

February 13-22, 2015

Music, karaoke, ice fishing derby, a queen’s pageant, pancake breakfast, ice skating show, sleigh rides, petting zoo, country western jamboree, and more.

Main Street and Holden Street North Adams, MA Phone: 413-664-6180

February 21, 2015

Hot chocolate, a chowder competition, ice sculpting, horse-drawn wagon rides, and roasted marshmallows at a community campfire.

Sage Steet Bennington, VT Phone:

January 31, 2015

The day starts off with the Penguin Plunge for Special Olympics at 11 a.m. at Lake Paran Boat Launch. From 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. there is an After Plunge Party at the Vermont Arts Exchange (Sage Street) with chili tasting, a cash bar, and live music
The Ice Carving Competition at the North Bennington Train Station starts on Friday, with most of the sculpting happening on Saturday. Prizes will be awarded at 3 p.m. . There will be a Winter Market Place at the Train Station. The Annual Indoor Winter Carnival at the North Bennington Graded School is a fun spot for children.
Weather permitting, there will be Wagon Rides from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. to all the event venues in the village. The day concludes with the annual Pet Fashion Show at Whitman’s Feed Store at 3:30 p.m. Free parking in the Lake Paran Beach Parking Lot off of Lake Paran Road. Bus will run from the parking lot to the Plunge site.
Time: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

The Remick Country Doctor Museum & Farm, 58 Cleveland Hill Road Tamworth, NH Phone:

February 7, 2015

See the work methods of the past as you learn to cut and stack ice as it was done in the days before refrigeration. Enjoy hot food, winter carnival games & crafts for the family. Also, watch a master ice carver at work. Admission: $10 age five and older. Time: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

New England Youth Theater, 100 Flat Street, and McNeill’s Brewery Brattleboro, VT Phone:

January 31, 2015

This year’s festival features over 20 musicians and the rich traditions of Ireland, Scotland, England, Scandinavia, New England and French Canada. The Northern Roots Festival begins with a full slate of daytime participation and performance activities, including workshops, panels, mini-concerts, pub sessions, dance band prep, and a family dance. The festival concludes with an evening.
The musicians performing this year include Lissa Scheckenburger (fiddle), Corey DiMario (tenor guitar and bass); Nicole Singer (maritime songs), Mark Roberts (Irish flute), Laurel Martin (Irish fiddle), Kieran Jordan (Irish step dancer), English Ceilidh band with brass, The Old Swanabees, and the Traddleboro ensemble.
Time: Noon to 9 p.m.
Admission: Day or evening, $20; both, $35; youth day or evening, $10; both, $15; 3 p.m. family concert & dance, $5 at door

Pawtucket Armory, 172 Exchange Street Pawtucket, RI Phone:

January 31, 2015

This celebration of American craft breweries hosts 56 breweries with 176 beers to sample. The event will have two 3-hour sampling sessions. Each session will feature local vendors and a food court. For guests age 21 and older. No pets allowed. Time: Session One: 1-4 p.m.; Session Two: 5:30-8:30 p.m. General admission: $65; designated drivers, $25

Main Street, Chester Village Center Chester, CT Phone: 860-526-1200

February 15, 2015

The town of Chester celebrates its 25th Annual Winter Carnivale, starting with the Ice Carving Competition (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.), street performers, free face painting and Mardi Gras beads. The Chili Cook Off is at the Chester Fire House ($5 donation). At 2 p.m. is the memorable Chester Tractor Parade down Main Street. Time: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Wentworth by the Sea, 588 Wentworth Road New Castle, NH Phone:

January 16 to February 15, 2015

A Big Tasting on January 16 with Tom Gannon, master sommelier candidate; a Grand Vintner’s Dinner on January 15 with winemaker Laura Diaz Munoz of Jackson Family Wines and Chef Ken Lingle of Wentworth by the Sea; Bubbles & Jazz Sunday Brunch on January 18; Shell-Shocked Oyster and Wine Celebration on January 22; Grand Vintner’s Dinner – Pigs & Pinot on January 24; Flight Nights every Monday through Thursday during the festival; and much more.

Colebrook Country Club, Route 26, and Colebrook Town Recreation Center Colebrook, NH Phone: 800-698-8939

January 30-31, 2015

Winter fun at two Colebrook locations.
Friday: Ski-Bees Game Dinner at Colebrook Country Club; music by Don Roy Band and the Fireside Fiddlers at Tillotson Center.
Saturday: Pancake Breakfast; kids Cardboard Box Derby; bocce and cribbage tournaments; canoe race; fireworks at 6:30 p.m. at Country Club. Also, at the Rec Center, Horse & sleigh rides; Dogsled rides; snow bocce; sliding; skating

Downtown Kennebunk Kennebunk, ME Phone:

February 6-7, 2015

Skating Party at Waterhouse Center Ice Rink, 4-9 p.m.; Jason Tardy, Fire Juggler, 5 p.m.; DJ Charlie Stevens, 6-9 p.m.
Saturday: Cabin Fever Book Sale at Kennebunk Free Library, 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m.; Skating at Waterhouse Center Ice Rink all day; Horse & Wagon Rides, noon-3 p.m.; Soup Contest at Holy Cross Church, noon-2 p.m.; Figure Skating Performance and Demonstrations, 2-2:30 p.m.; Variety Show at Town Hall Auditorium, 7 p.m.

Downtown Lowell Lowell, MA Phone: 978-459-6150

February 20-21, 2015

Two days of fun and unusual outdoor winter activities for everyone!
Friday: Human Dogsled Competition, Free Skating at Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell , build a snowman village, Custom hot chocolate bar, fire pits, Human Snowglobe, music, and lighting along the canal at Lucy Larcom Park, Micro, Craft and Home Brewer’s Competition & Showcase (Friday, 6-9 p.m.), fire show with Cirque de Light, Club Celsius with live music.
Saturday: Wildlife tracking, dog mushing demonstrations , North Bowl Soup Competition, horse-drawn carriage rides, Snowman Village, Laser and Video Show and Special Effects Grand Finale.

Various Locations Newport, RI Phone: 401-847-7666

February 13-22, 2015

New England’s Largest Winter Extravaganza offers a unique winter experience combining food, festivities, music, and fun for all ages. Melt away your winter blues with all the Newport Winter Festival has to offer. Highlighted events include the Children’s Fair, Chili Cook-Off, Chicken Wing Cook-off and an exciting, fun concert by the Jimmy Buffett tribute band, Changes in Latitude. See Festival website for detailed schedule

King Pine Ski Area, 1251 Eaton Road (Route 153) East Madison, NH Phone: 603-367-8896

February 16-27, 2015

The fun-filled King Pine Carnival offers sleigh rides, snowshoe tours, silly slalom & belly bag races, family challenge races, gold rush, kids fun race, fireworks over (Thursday, February 19), and a kids light parade (Friday February 27). Check the calendar for more details. Email:

Squam Lakes Association, 534 Route 3 Holderness, NH Phone: 603-968-7336

February 14, 2015

Enjoy an afternoon of ice skating and sledding, cross-county skiing, ice hockey, Nordic skating demos, winter mini-golf and more! Also prepare of belly up to our chili contest. There will be an outdoor bonfire, marshmallows to roast and hot cocoa to sip. 

720 South Bridgton Road Various locations in and near Bridgton, ME Phone: 207-647-3472

February 14-15, 2015

Sled dog rides, snowmobile rides, Freezin for a Reason polar dip, table tennis, kids fishing derby, Carnival Dance, magic show, pancake breakfast, chili lunch, bean supper, and more.

Various locations in town Bridgton, ME Phone: 207-647-3472

February 14-15, 2015

Events during the two days of indoor and outdoor winter fun include table tennis tournament, kids snow creation competition, horse-drawn carriage wagon rides, soups and chili for sale, junior ice fishing contest, sled dog rides at Highland Lake Beach, town rink open skating, snowmobile rides, nature hike at Pondicherry Park Magic Lantern Lot, Freezin' For A Reason polar dip at Highland Lake Beach, baked bean supper at St. Josephs Parish Hall, House Concert Series at Noble House Inn.

Grafton Ponds Outdoor Center, 783 Townshend Road Grafton, VT, 05146 Phone: 802-843-2400

February 7, 2015

Head to Grafton Ponds Outdoor Center for a day of fun in the snow for the whole family. Entry fee includes all-day snow tubing all day, a bonfire with treats and ice skating. Time: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Email:

Boston Harbor Hotel, 70 Rowes Wharf Boston, MA Phone:

January 9-March 27, 2015

Enjoy Food And Wine Pairings At The Boston Harbor Hotel. Chef Daniel Bruce, founder of the Boston Wine Festival, continues his tradition of presenting exceptional wine dinners at the Boston Harbor Hotel. The opening reception on January 9 will feature intimate winemaker hosted dinners, brunches, seminars, and receptions, continuing through March 27. See festival website for detailed schedule.

Burlington Waterfront and ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center, One College Street Burlington, VT Phone: 802-865-7090

February 7, 2015

Join us for another fun and friendly Family Expo at the ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center! Make arts and crafts and win prizes! Star 92.9 will be broadcasting and will give away children's movie passes to Essex Cinema for the first 200 kids that come by. Other events of the day include the Penguin Plunge, KidsVT Camp Fair, and the Church Street Marketplace's Winter Lights kickoff.
Board a free shuttle between Church Street Marketplace and ECHO from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Parking at ECHO will be limited so this is the best option. Admission to ECHO is half price all day. Time: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

32 Reeds Gap Road Middlefield, CT Phone: 860-349-1793

February 21-22, 2015

Come watch an ice-carving demonstration by New England's best carvers. Taste old-fashioned sugar on snow. Family activities include horse-drawn wagon rides, dog sled rides for children, mini-musher lessons, visits with Siberian Husky dogs, and snow tubing at Powder Ridge. Some outdoor activities subject to weather and grounds conditions. Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Camden Public Library, 55 Main Street Camden, ME, 04843 Phone: 207-236-9656

January 31 - February 8, 2015

Camden Winterfest opens January 31 and February 1 with ice-carving in the Amphitheatre and brilliant snow sculptures scattered throughout town, and the CamJam in Harbor Park. In addition to ice sculpting, the January 31 celebration includes music outdoors and indoors at the Amphitheatre and Library, volunteers serving hot food outdoors, kids crafts indoors, and family fun in the Amphitheatre. The following week will be full of community events including concerts, movies, and dances at the Opera House, Camden Public Library, Strom Auditorium, and fire station.
Winterfest closes culminates February 7 and 8 with a Snow Plow Parade, the Banff Film Festival, and fireworks over the harbor, along with the National Toboggan Championships . See the event website for a schedule of activities.

various locations Salem, MA Phone: 978-744-0004

February 6-15, 2015

Kick-off for the festival is a Chocolate & Wine Tasting on Friday, February 6, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Colonial Hall at Rockafellas. Wine and chocolate samplings from premier Salem restaurants, stores, and sweet shops will be served. Through February 15, 16 large sculptures will appear around downtown Salem. A map of sculptures and locations will be available online. The Salem Trolley will offer trolley rides around the festival route February 7 and 8 from noon to 4 p.m. for $2 a person. Many downtown businesses will offer discounts and special offerings throughout the festival.

Various locations Portsmouth, NH Phone:

February 12-16, 2015

Ice bars, fire pits, hearth cooking/wood fire grilled food, dog sled rides, ice skating, ice sculptures/demonstrations, winter movies, opera and live music.
Ice Skating at Strawbery Banke Puddle Dock Pond. 9 a.m.-9 p.m. (daily through fest)
Kick Off Party. 5-7 p.m.
Ice Fest Charity Night at Portsmouth Gas Light Deck. 5 p.m.
Men in Motion at Portsmouth Gas Light Night Club, 7 p.m.
PMAC Jazz Night 2015 at Music Hall Loft. 7 p.m.
Mike MacDonald Comedy Xxtravaganza at Music Hall Historic Theater, 8 p.m.
Iolanta (Tchaikovsky) & Duke Bluebeard’s Castle (Bartok) at Music Hall Historic Theater. 12:30 p.m.
Ice Fest at Portsmouth Gas Light Deck, 5 p.m.
Ed Gerhard Valentine Concert at Seacoast Rep. 8 p.m.
Dog Sled Rides at Strawbery Banke. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday and MOnday
Performances by Patrick Dorow at Player’s Ring. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Ice Fest At Portsmouth Gas Light Deck, Noon
Fire & Ice Bar Crawl 2-6 p.m.
Performances by Patrick Dorow at Player’s Ring. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Dartmouth College Hanover, NH Phone: 603-646-3399

February 5-8, 2015

Known as the oldest collegiate winter festival, Winter Carnival is a celebration of winter, snow, and fun in the outdoors. Polar bear swims, races, competitions, ice and snow fun. A big part of the fest is the ice sculpting competition.