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Holiday Traditions

The dining room at the Seward House Museum in Auburn.

Seven historic and cultural sites in the Auburn area will open their doors Sunday, Dec. 8, for the city's annual Holiday Traditions event.

Started by the Seward House Museum more than 30 years ago, the event offers free holiday programming throughout the city on the second Sunday in December.

Here's what's happening at this year's Holiday Traditions:

❆ Festival of Trees: The Ward W. O'Hara Agricultural & Country Living Museum and Dr. Joseph F. Karpinski Sr. Educational Center will present their annual holiday display of more than 100 decorated trees, as well as horse-drawn wagon rides, music, face painting, coloring and Santa arriving at 1 p.m. for Christmas cookie decoration, making ornaments and carols. The event takes place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the museum, 6880 E. Lake Road, Owasco. Dressing for cold weather is encouraged. For more information, call (315) 252-7644.

❆ Victorian Christmas: The Seward House Museum will be decorated for the holidays of yesteryear on the only day of the year the full museum is open to self-guided exploration. Along with the decor, which includes seasonal arrangements from local florists and artisans, the day will feature live music and stories of past Seward family Christmases from museum staff and volunteers. The event takes place from noon to 5 p.m. at the museum, 33 South St., Auburn. For more information, call (315) 252-1283 or visit sewardhouse.org.

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❆ Holiday music medley: Willard Memorial Chapel will present a program of music that includes hammered dulcimer by John Wilmot from noon to 1 p.m., holiday music by Perform 4 Purpose from 1 to 2:30 p.m., Susan May on the Steere & Turner organ from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. and tours from 3:30 to 5 p.m. The chapel is located at 17 Nelson St., Auburn. For more information, call (315) 252-0339 or visit willard-chapel.org.

❆ Winter Wonderland Holiday Market: The New York State Equal Rights Heritage Center will welcome more than 20 vendors, including artist Sandra Shutter, Octane Social House and Oma Nonna Heirloom Cookies. The center will also present live music by Fiona Chisholm and Safe Word Duo, and Jess Novak and Ben Wayne. Also at the center will be child-friendly holiday activities, and eggnog and hot chocolate from the Taste NY Market. The event takes place from noon to 5 p.m. at the center, 25 South St., Auburn. For more information, visit visitauburnny.com.

❆ Paper ornament making: The Cayuga Museum of History & Art will invite guests to make paper ornaments in the galleries and explore the museum and its exhibits. The event takes place from noon to 5 p.m. at the museum, 203 Genesee St., Auburn. For more information, call (315) 253-8051 or visit cayugamuseum.org.

❆ Scroogette the Marionette": The Schweinfurth Art Center will present a marionette performance by students in a puppetry class there at 2 p.m. The center's "Quilts=Art=Quilts" and "Narrative Quilts" exhibits will also be on display, and mulled cider and holiday cookies will be served. The event takes place from 1 to 5 p.m. at the center, 205 Genesee St., Auburn. For more information, visit myartcenter.org.

❆ "Christmas Wonder": St. Francis of Assisi Church will present a program of holiday music from the Auburn Chamber Orchestra, "Christmas Wonder," featuring an overture from "Miracle on 34th Street," a waltz from "The Nutcracker," music from "White Christmas" and more. A $5 donation is suggested. The concert takes place at 4 p.m. at the church, 299 Clark St., Auburn. For more information, visit auburnchamberorchestra.com.

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