For Immediate Release

Wilmington and the Brandywine Valley (November 27, 2018) – Combining its Colonial roots with the upcoming holiday season, Greater Wilmington, Delaware ensures that its visitors can enjoy a variety of Colonial Christmas experiences that pay homage to holidays of the past.

With its “Colonial Chic” vibe, Historic New Castle may be best known as the destination where Delaware voted to break away from Pennsylvania and England, on June 15, 1776. The New Castle Court House is part of the First State National Historical Park and it’s also a stop on the town’s annual Spirit of Christmas tour. This year’s town-wide celebration takes place on Saturday, December 8 and includes tours of private historic homes and churches decorated for the season, museum tours, events at the courthouse and musical performances throughout the day. The festivities conclude at 5 p.m. with the town’s annual tree lighting ceremony and caroling in the Market Square. Another classic New Castle holiday tradition is A Dickens Experience, which includes a Victorian ball, Victorian teas, costumed characters throughout the town and performances of A Christmas Carol. This year’s Dickens Experience takes place December 7 and 8.

With a history dating back to the 1660s, when the Dutch settled here, the village of Odessa maintains one of the most pristine Colonial townscapes and a commitment to historic preservation. Christmas in Odessa is an annual, self-guided walking tour through some of the town’s most fascinating 18th- and 19th-century buildings, all with a Christmas twist. This year marks the 54th annual tour, which takes place on December 1 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Since 1987, the Historic Odessa Foundation has been transforming one of the historic homes into a classic children’s storybook. Commemorating the 175th anniversary of its first publication, this year’s holiday exhibit will interpret scenes from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens at the Corbit Sharp House through December 30. Another way to step back in time and explore the Christmas traditions of yesteryear is through the Holiday Candlelight Tour offered by the Historic Odessa Foundation. Participants experience a special candlelight tour of the 2018 holiday exhibit, champagne and festive treats.

Located in Wilmington, Old Swedes Church is the oldest church in the United States standing as originally built and still in use as a house of worship. The Swedes were the first permanent European settlers in Delaware and the Church was built between 1698 and 1699. On Sunday, December 9, the Church pays tribute to the region’s Swedish heritage with a traditional celebration of the Feast of Sankta Lucia, a holiday that marks the beginning of the Christmas season. The program is narrated in English and sung in Swedish.

For more information or for help planning a Colonial Christmas visit to the area, please visit


Wilmington & the Brandywine Valley is in the heart of the Mid-Atlantic region and less than a two-hour drive from both New York City and Washington. Steeped in American history and the legacy of the famed du Pont family, Greater Wilmington is a destination marked by sharp contrasts – town and garden, past and present, historic and hip. From renowned gardens, world-class museums, colonial towns, outdoor adventure, festivals, and an ever-growing craft beer and restaurant scene, each experience is more vibrant, more unique and more authentic than the last. Learn more at And to see the beauty of the Brandywine Valley now, watch this:

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