portsmouth holiday parade
The 2021 Portsmouth Holiday Parade takes place on Dec. 4.

Top 10 things to do: Dec. 3-5

A roundup of weekend entertainment on the Seacoast

Holiday season kicks into high gear this weekend, with lots of festive events at local sites. Here are some highlights.

Winter Solstice in Story & Song

In this new virtual performance, master storyteller Diane Edgecomb weaves together a tapestry of ancient tales that reveal deep meaning behind our winter holiday traditions. Presented by New Hampshire Theatre Project, “Winter Solstice in Story and Song” is available on demand through Jan. 9. Tickets are $10. Learn more here.

Button Factory Open Studios

Guests at the Button Factory in Portsmouth this weekend can shop for unique handmade gifts across three floors of arts and crafts. The Button Factory Open Studios event kicks off Friday from 5-8 p.m. with resident artists. It continues with additional guest artists on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more here.

New exhibits at the NHAA

The New Hampshire Art Association opens two new shows at the Robert Lincoln Levy Gallery in Portsmouth during Art ‘Round Town on Friday from 5-8 p.m. “Let It Snow” presents seasonal works in all mediums by NHAA members. “Objectivity” is a 3D show with work by Bess French, Gail Kushner, David Random, and Jef Steingrebe.

Kris Delmhorst at The Word Barn

kris delmhorst

“Bold and brilliant” singer-songwriter Kris Delmhorst, a revered veteran of the indie Americana world, will bring along master guitarist Kevin Barry to The Word Barn in Exeter for an intimate performance on Friday from 7-8:30 p.m. Folk and country singer and guitarist Erik Koskinen will open the show. Tickets are $25. Learn more here.

Concerts at The Dance Hall

mike effenberger

Two collaborative acts play at The Dance Hall in Kittery this weekend. On Friday, Mike Effenberger (keys), Brian Shankar Adler (drums), and Scott Kiefner (bass) explore collective improvisation ($15). On Saturday, singer-songwriters Marc McElroy and Seth Warner lead an all-star band ($15). Both shows are 7:30-8:30 p.m. Learn more here.

‘A Christmas Carol’ at the Ring

christmas carol players ring

After going virtual in 2020, The Players’ Ring’s annual production of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” returns to Portsmouth through Dec. 23. Directed by Jen Towle, show times are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. (and nightly at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 20-23). Tickets are $15-$25. Learn more here.

Concerts at The Stone Church

Ms. Vee & A Bad Ass Band won the 2021 Granite State Blues Challenge in the “band” category, while Jerry Duggar won the “solo” crown. Both acts will perform at The Stone Church in Newmarket on Friday at 8 p.m. ($25). Instrumental favorites Toubab Krewe play the Church on Saturday at 9 p.m. with DJ TonyBonez ($25). Learn more here.

Concerts at The Press Room

ballroom thieves press room

Indie folk-rock duo The Ballroom Thieves concludes a two-night run at The Press Room in Portsmouth on Friday at 9 p.m. with opener The Wolff Sisters ($25-$35). Gay pop duo Man On Man, featuring Faith No More keyboardist Roddy Bottum and his partner Joey Holman, follows on Saturday at 9 p.m. with opener Seepeoples ($15).

Portsmouth Holiday Parade

portsmouth holiday parade 2021

This weekend is filled with holiday parades and other seasonal festivities. Portsmouth’s annual holiday parade, tree lighting, and food drive takes place Saturday starting at 5:30 p.m. in Market Square (rain date is Sunday at 5:30 p.m.). Learn more here. For a rundown of other town-sanctioned holiday gatherings in the area, click here.

A Different Engine at WSCA

A Different Engine

Our local radio station is again hosting live concerts! Indie-rock and power-pop band A Different Engine, who are at work on their third studio album, take the Button Factory Stage at WSCA Portsmouth Community Radio on Saturday from 8-10 p.m. Local rock band Bad Neighbors will open the show. Tickets are $12. Learn more here.

See the full calendar for more local events.