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Greater Hartford Arts Council - 2011 Events
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Festival Of Light

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This year the 48th annual Festival’s focus is on expanded activities – bringing a whole season of enjoyment, in hopes that people will see the lights at Bushnell Park and Constitution Plaza and come downtown over and over again.


Construction is already underway for a skating rink in the park that will open December 10 and offer free public skating and free skate rentals through January 6.

Mayor Pedro E. Segarra will host the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the rink on Friday, December 10 at 4 p.m. The Hartford Public High School Show Choir will perform. Following the ceremony public skating will be open until 6 pm, and from 7 – 9 pm. International champion skaters will perform a skating show from 6 – 7 pm.

Beginning on December 11 and continuing until January 6, public skating hours will open at 11 am every day. Here is the detailed schedule:

  • Monday –Thursday 11 am –  8 pm.
  • Friday: 11 am – 6 pm; 7 – 9 pm  |  Champion skating show 6 – 7 pm
  • Saturday:  11 am – 6 pm; 7 pm – 9 pm  |  Champion skating show 6 – 7 pm
  • Sunday:  11 am – 8 pm

School Vacation week:

  • Monday – Thursday Dec. 27 – 30:  11 am – 8 pm
  • Friday Dec. 31 (First Night):  11 am – 6 pm & 7 pm – 1:00 am  |  Champion skating show 6 – 7 pm

Holiday skating hours:

  • Christmas Eve (Dec 24) and Christmas Day (Dec 25) 11 am – 5 pm.
  • New Years Eve – First Night (Dec 31) until 1 am
  • New Years Day (Jan 1) 11 am – 9 pm

Stop in and See Santa

Bring the whole family down to the Bushnell Park Pump House to meet Santa and donate a new, unwrapped gift to Toys For Tots. Santa will be in the park following the ribbon cutting on December 10 until 7 pm and on December 11 and 12 from 2 5 pm.


Ride the Carousel

The Bushnell Park Carousel will be open Fridays and Saturdays from 2 – 8 pm. Santa will be at the Carousel on Friday, December 17 from 5:30 pm 7:30 pm. Enjoy refreshments, face painting, balloons and more!

Enjoy Free Hot Chocolate

Take a break from the cold to enjoy free cocoa and cookies provided by Center Church. These will be served in the ground level dining room of the Center Church House, 60 Gold Street, on Fridays, December 3, 10, and 17, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm.

This year’s Hartford Festival of Light® is a city-wide collaborative event, presented by the City of Hartford, in partnership with the Greater Hartford Arts Council, The Bushnell, and The Whale. Thanks to funding from many of the region’s corporations and foundations, Hartford Festival of Light will offer a full season of enjoyment for everyone. And best of all, it’s free.

Happy Holidays and We'll See You at the Park!

This is primarily an outdoor event.
The Greater Hartford Arts Council ranks in the top 10 of United Arts Campaigns in the country. But what does that mean for our community? United Arts is a community-specific effort that raises money and distributes earned funds to the arts, heritage and cultural organizations in the area. It's a combined appeal for arts funding—one gift is shared by the more than 150 arts and heritage organizations we support.
Greater Hartford Arts Council
Mailing Address: PO Box 231436, Hartford, CT 06123-1436
Physical Address: 100 Pearl Street, 1st Fl., Hartford, CT 06103
Phone: (860) 525-8629
Fax: (860) 278-5461
For general inquiries, please e-mail

Images and descriptions on this page are used by permission of  Greater Hartford Arts Council, and are protected under United States Copyright Laws. For information, contact Greater Hartford Arts Council.

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Content Last Modified on 12/8/2011 1:12:41 PM