The Bellefonte Victorian Christmas is a two-day holiday event that looks back at the borough’s history.
The Victorian Christmas was founded in 1981 to remember how the holiday season was celebrated during the heyday of Bellefonte during the 1800s. Downtown merchants were asked to decorate their store windows with old-fashioned yuletide decorations.
The event has grown over the years to become a popular family tradition that includes strolling characters in period costumes, horse-drawn carriage rides, and musical concerts, as well as Victorian high teas, an arts and crafts sale, gingerbread house contest, visits with Santa Claus, a festival of trees, and historic homes tours.
The Victorian Christmas festivities are held at various locations in the borough, including the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial, Bellefonte Art Museum for Centre County, Centre County Library & Historical Museum, Talleyrand Park, Pennsylvania Match Factory, Reynolds Mansion, and Trinity United Methodist Church.
Bellefonte residents have always taken pride in the borough’s Victorian-influenced downtown that is on the National Register of Historic Places. Many of the best-known buildings were constructed during the period, including the Brockerhoff House, Crider Exchange, Bush House, Temple Court Building, First National Bank Building, W.F. Reynolds & Co. Bank Building, and Petrikin Hall.
The Victorian Christmas is sponsored in part by Historic Bellefonte, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of the borough. The event was not held in 2020 because of the Covid pandemic. It is resuming in 2021.
First Published: December 5, 2021
Last Modified: January 5, 2022