Gather in and around the village of Hamilton and search for that perfect gift, enjoy a ride on a horse-drawn wagon ride or embrace the holiday spirit with family and friends.

Local shops are bursting with the perfect gift for him and her. Bonus holiday shopping times, along with light refreshments to boost your energy, are set for Nov. 17, 24, Dec. 1, 8, 15 and 22 when most shops will be open until 7 p.m.

Be sure to mark your calendar now for Hamilton’s Night of Lights scheduled for 6 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1, on the Hamilton Village Green. The evening’s activities are free and include a horse-drawn wagon rides sponsored by Hamilton Rotary Club and Colgate Rotarac; the official tree lighting by Mayor RuthAnn Loveless; Santa's arrival by fire truck; musical entertainment; luminaries; a visit from Frosty and Rudolph; and much more.

Other holiday events include the Holiday House Decorating Contest; entries must be registered by Dec. 10. The winners will not only receive $250 to spend locally for the Holidays but will also select a local non-profit that will receive another $250. To enter, fill out the form on thisishamiltonny.com or at the Mid-York Weekly by Dec. 10. Winners will be announced Dec. 15.

There’s plenty of other things to do during the month of December including Community Memorial Hospital Auxiliary’s annual holiday sale, 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Dec. 2, First Baptist Church; horse-drawn wagon rides from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, 9 and 16; Breakfast with Santa Dec. 2 at the Colgate Inn, call for reservations; Christmas Cookies with Mrs. Claus, Dec. 9 or 16 at Maxwells Chocolates; and, of course, visits with Santa 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Dec. 9 and 23 at Parry’s and much more.

Visit thisishamiltonny.com for a complete list of events and contact information. Parking is free at the village lot located on Payne Street behind the Hamilton Village Office any time and along curbside during late night shopping hours.

Holidays in Hamilton is sponsored by the Hamilton Business Alliance in partnership with Hamilton Village, Hamilton Rotary, and sponsors: Community Bank, Village Wine and Spirits, Dougherty Pharmacy, College Orthopaedics, NBT, Hamilton Hearing, Susie Gustafson Real Estate, Eagle River Realty, Suzanne L. Martin Real Estate, and Hamilton Village Real Estate.