Holiday Lights and Cocoa Drives 2020 map #GloucesterMA 🚗☕🎄✨⛄Update 5 – Magnolia, Centennial, Maplewood, Madison Ave., Wash., and more!

more photos

The following photographs were posted last week

5TH POST – UPDATE 4- Annisquam DEC. 5, 2020

Scenes of Annisquam: Annisquam Village Hall; Annisquam Bridge; white lights and wreaths and trees at junctions. Followed with en route detours off Washington Street via Cherry, Spruce, Gee, Finch Lane, Reynard, Holly Street | Goose Cove Lane (near Willow Rest), Dennison

en route

Washington Street plus detours via Cherry, Spruce, Gee, Finch Lane, Reynard, Holly Street | Goose Cove Lane (near Willow Rest), Dennison

animated happy Santa waving from a car– off Holly St.:)

dog in bay


4th Post – Update 3- eAST gLOUCESTER Published Dec. 4, 2020

12/4/2020 Twinkling lights and candles in East Gloucester including Rocky Pasture Road; Decatur; High Popples; Mt. Pleasant

Third Post -UPDATE 2- pORTUGUESE HILL + eSSEX aVE STRETCH published 12/3/2020

photos in this post include: the second stretch of Essex Avenue from Richdale heading up to Farnham’s; Portuguese Hill neighborhood; don’t miss Happy Santa indigo up on Perkins; Harrison; and sweet charm of Hartz. Check the map for updates. Still to come: East Gloucester, Annnisquam, Lanesville, Magnolia.

What a gift our neighbors have shared for the community! There are so many festive houses in Gloucester it’s easy to plan multiple merry excursions.

  • Eyespy challenges could switch nightly. Can you find a Santa? A peace sign? Snoopy?
  • How about a Bring the Cuddlies Christmas Light Tour- children can help their toy friends see out the car window. This one may be a given: Happy to share photos of your precious travelers :).
  • Pick a specific route by color lights or house style.
  • Bring art supplies to sketch a view
  • Older homes make it fun to wonder about what it was like in the past. For families that like Old Timey winter scenes–imagine New England Little Women, Little House on the Prairie, Winslow Homer, Currier& Ives– pretend the car is a sleigh or horse and buggy. Find some dress up attire that looks vintage (or go all out and find some duds at Bananas). Add a hot water bottle for the feet. A towel or blanket can wrap around like a hand warmer muff. For fans of Louisa May Alcott, point to Braewood* on Essex Avenue (across from Pauline’s gifts) and Rocky Neck, where she stayed on Gloucester holidays. Picture a winter skating rink in front of the UU Church on Middle Street. *For more about the history of Braewood and Alcott in Gloucester, search “Braewood” in this prior post.
  • For the train and dinosaur train enthusiasts, all aboard! The express car might even time with the T or train.

These are special outings just outside your door. Don’t miss them!

Illustration for Louisa May Alcott Jack and Jill, 1880 – distant town and harbor suggestion of Gloucester from a property like Braewood at the time

annual beauty Concord/Essex Ave
happy Santa indigo

Second post – Update 1 – published Dec. 1, 2020 Essex Ave/Western Ave

Essex Avenue stretch between Causeway and Richdale; Western Avenue near Stage Fort Park; Kent Circle and Stage Fort Park. Check back as more neighborhood batches are added.

First POST for 2020 published November 30

Elizabeth Road, Washington Street to Reynard Street/Cherry Street, Warner Street, Thurston Point 

When I was a girl, my family, like many other families, considered every nocturne drive a chance to look for Christmas lights. Of course we carried on this tradition with our own children. The magic of the season is so easy to find in neighborhoods throughout Gloucester and all of Cape Ann. Coasting past classic New England home styles decorated for the holidays– while driving along bends and dips in the roads by charming coves– is sheer visual delight. There is a surprise around every corner.

Plus the season’s early nightfall is most welcome for little ones’ bedtime enchantment. Throw on some comfy holiday attire and toss in a thermos of hot chocolate to make it an extra special treat for the youngest, and the young at heart, and the perfect outing for social distancing in this year of Covid. Repeat visits are encouraged because there’s so much to see and more added every day.

Last year readers asked for a map. Here are some of the homes spreading cheer NOW with their Christmas lights and holiday yard displays. Is your favorite friendly seasonal character out there? Or favorite color lights twinkling bright? I’ll continue to update the map and snapshot photographs, including specific requests and location recommendations from GMG readers.

THIS WEEK – And still more attractions with festive lights coming soon.  First Annual Winter Lights Display on Cape Ann starts December 7th. Check out all the businesses and organizations readying light displays downtown and local shopping!

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