auburn-santa.JPGFree Holiday Celebration December 9, 2012 Auburn, N.Y. - Holiday Traditions is an event that was created by the Seward House over 30 years ago as a token of appreciation to the Auburn community. Since that time, other local cultural attractions and sites have opened their doors to the public for free the second Sunday in December. Now, the "open house" is a tradition, and again this year, participation has expanded to include churches and other non-profit organizations.  The Cayuga Museum, 203 Genesee Street (315) 253-8051 http://www.cayugamuseum.org/  Open from Noon to 5PM - The mansion will be decked out in its holiday best.  Current exhibit - You Are Here! Putting Auburn on the Map, Maps and Map Making. Also plan to visit the Case Research Lab, Birthplace of Talking Movies.  The Harriet Tubman Home, 180 South Street (315) 252-2081 http://www.harriethouse.org/  The Harriet Tubman Home will be open from Noon - 5PM for tours. Schweinfurth Art Center, 205 Genesee Street (315) 255-1553 http://www.myartcenter.org/  Open from Noon-5PM - Quilts made by 64 artists from all over the world will be on view in the annual Quilts=Art=Quilts exhibition.  Families are invited to complete a scavenger hunt in the exhibition.  In addition, the Operation Kid Comfort Program from Watertown will present a Trunk Show at 2PM. Seward House Museum, 33 South Street (315) 252-1283 http://www.sewardhouse.org/ Open from Noon to 5PM.  Area florists and artisans have adopted the museum again this year to provide an array of spectacular holiday decorations.  Live musical performances throughout the day will add to the holiday splendor. Visit the Seward House Museum to experience the elegance of Christmas past. St. Francis of Assisi Church, 303 Clark Street (315) 252-7593 http://marymarthaauburn.org/The Church will be open from Noon to 5PM.  The Auburn Chamber Orchestra will perform at 4PM.  Coffee hour to follow. St. Mary's, 17 Clark Street (315) 252-6343 http://www.stmaryauburn.org/ St. Mary's will host an Open House from 1:30PM to 4PM with the Gift Shop open, tours of the Church and refreshments.  The Voices of Faith, a chorale group from Syracuse, will perform at 3PM. Ward O'Hara Agricultural Museum, Route 38A (315) 252-5009 www.cayuganet.org/agmuseum Celebrate Christmas in the1800s from Noon till 4PM with horse and wagon rides and many other activities throughout the museum for the kids.    Mary Ann Finn will entertain on the keyboard and Santa will arrive at 12:30pm.  Children can decorate holiday cookies, make Christmas decorations, and enter the Christmas coloring contest. Westminster Presbyterian Church, 17 William Street (315) 253-3331 www.westminsterauburn.org/ Westminster will be open 12-4pm for tours of the historic church (decorated for Advent) and display of its handsewn Advent banners. Lori Rhodes Pettit will play Christmas music on the church's Skinner Organ at 1:30pm, followed by a behind-the-scenes "tour" of the organ and explanation of how the magnificent instrument works. The Masterworks Chorale will perform a holiday concert at 3pm in the sanctuary. Willard Memorial Chapel, 17 Nelson Street (315) 252-0339 http://www.willardchapel.org/ The Chapel will be offering guided tours from Noon until 5 PM.  Read with Santa at 1PM sponsored by the Literacy Volunteers of America.  From 1:30-3:30PM, children from Sacred Heart, St. Ann's, and Tyburn Academy, conducted by Anne Adessa, will perform all types of music including traditional carols, older popular Christmas tunes, contemporary Christian and popular holiday tunes.  They will also feature violin, vocal and piano solos.  About Auburn's Historic & Cultural Sites Commission To ensure communication between the many Holiday Traditions' partners, the City of Auburn's Historic & Cultural Sites Commission coordinates publicity and advertising for this event. The Commission site members include Auburn Public Theater, Auburn Schine's Theater, Cayuga Museum & Case Research Lab, Harriet Tubman Home, Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center, Seward House Museum and Willard Memorial Chapel. For more information, about Holiday Traditions, or for a photo from the past events, call the Cayuga County Office of Tourism at 315-255-1658. If you have questions regarding a specific venue, please phone them directly.

###

Editorial Contact:  Barbara Murdoch Auburn's Historic & Cultural Sites Commission 131 Genesee Street Auburn, NY 13021 315.255.1658/800.499.9615 barb@tourcayuga.com