Construction Begins October 16
Story Time Tickets on Sale October 28 at 1 PM
Cozy Igloo Tickets on Sale November 4 at 10 AM
Rochester, NY — Oct. 10, 2023 —The fifth annual City of Rochester Roc Holiday Village presented by Five Star Bank opens at 4 p.m. Friday, December 1 through December 23 for a record 17 days of free family-friendly fun at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Park in downtown Rochester.
Co-founders, Jenna Manetta-Knauf, Kelli Marsh, and Sean McCarthy announced details of the popular holiday festival at a news conference today.
Since its start in 2018, Roc Holiday Village has welcomed more than 140,000 people of all ages for holiday magic annually.
Saturday, December 2 at 5:00 p.m., the annual Liberty Pole Lighting will include a parade to Roc Holiday Village held in partnership with the City of Rochester. More details about the lighting and parade will be announced at a later date.
Roc Holiday Village continues on Sunday, December 3; Wednesday, December 6; Thursday, December 7; Friday, December 8; Saturday, December 9; Sunday, December 10; Wednesday, December 13, Thursday, December 14; Friday, December 15; Saturday, December 16; Sunday, December 17; Wednesday, December 20; Thursday, December 21; Friday, December 22; Saturday, December 23.
- Santa’s Workshop will be open Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Triple-O Lodge bar and Frosty’s Food Court will be open Wednesday and Thursday 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- The ice rink will be open weather permitting Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Shopping Village will be open Wednesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m, Friday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m, Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Simcona Gingerbread House will be open Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m, Saturday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“We are thrilled to announce our plans for the fifth annual event. This year’s holiday festival promises to be full of fun and celebration,” said co-founders, Manetta-Knauf, Marsh, and McCarthy. “We extend our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has been a part of this event from the start. Your support and enthusiasm motivate us to keep making each year better. We can’t wait to see you all in December!”
“Roc Holiday Village has become one of Downtown Rochester’s signature
events and is an inclusive holiday destination for all,” said Mayor Malik D. Evans. “The City of Rochester is thrilled to sponsor another year of the Roc Holiday Village. I urge everyone to come Downtown this December and celebrate the season at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Park!”
“It’s almost hard to imagine downtown Rochester in December without Roc Holiday Village and the bustle of activity and thousands of visitors from near and far that it attracts to our beautiful city,” said Five Star Bank President and CEO Martin K. Birmingham. “As a community bank, Five Star prides itself on helping our communities thrive. It’s been so rewarding to serve as presenting sponsor of this wonderful event for five years running and support its growth, year after year.”
Cozy Winter Igloo tickets go on sale Saturday, November 4 at 10 AM
The Samson Fuel Igloo Village will feature 10 Cozy Igloos available to book for groups of six to eight people each. Each geodesic dome-covered lounge has a view of the Village, is furnished with stylish and cozy chairs, blankets, and pillows, and offers bar service.
Cozy Winter Igloo tickets go on sale Saturday, November 4 at 10 a.m. online at rocholidayvillage.com. They can be booked for 90-minute increments for $190 plus taxes and fees. Additional food and drink options are available for purchase in advance during the checkout process. Roc Holiday Village’s ticketing system allows customers to hold the booking for 10 minutes during the checkout process. If a timeslot appears sold out, customers are advised to refresh the page. The system takes time to cycle back after an incomplete sale. To complete Cozy Igloo ticket purchases, customers may sign up for a free account with the new system, run by Tock. Cozy Igloos sold out in one hour in 2022.
Story Time With Santa and Story Time With Anna and Elsa tickets go on sale Saturday, October 28 at 1 PM
For the first time since 2019, Roc Holiday Village is hosting ticketed special events including Story Time With Santa and Story Time With Anna and Elsa. Tickets go on sale Saturday, October 28 at 1 p.m. online at rocholidayvillage.com. Story Time With Anna and Elsa is for $40 per person plus taxes and fees, and Story Time With Santa is $25 per person plus taxes and fees. Optional cookie decorating is also available for an additional $15 and includes 4 cookies.
Story Time With Santa takes place on Saturday, December 9 and Sunday, December 17 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. inside the Triple-O Lodge and includes storytelling, a sing-along led by Mr. Loops, crafts and refreshments.
Story Time With Anna and Elsa takes place on Sunday, December 10 and Saturday, December 16 from 9 to 11 a.m. inside the Triple-O Lodge and includes an interactive story, sing-along, photo ops and refreshments. The popular Frozen characters made their debut in 2022 at Roc Holiday Village at a free public event attended by thousands.
Space is limited. Children 2 and under are free if seated on a lap. All sales are final and tickets are non-refundable.
Highlights & What’s New
- An additional Igloo Inn will be available for private parties of up to 30 people and will be located adjacent to the ice rink. A total of three Igloo Inns – one for up to 40 people and two for up to 30 people – are available to book now by emailing email@example.com.
- Rohrbach Brewing Company will debut a new beer in partnership with Roc Holiday Village called “Village Lager” – A crisp classic German lager that sparkles like the magic of Roc Holiday Village. With a bready malt backbone and subtle hops, Village Lager is an ode to the nostalgia of the holiday season.
- An expanded selection of free arcade games to enjoy inside the Triple-O Lodge.
- Two Mini Maker Market dates – Wednesday, December 13 and Wednesday, December 20 from 4 to 9 p.m. in the Simcona Gingerbread House.
- The Giving Cup – A rotation of local nonprofit charitable organizations will be serving up delicious hot cocoa inside the Triple-O Lodge to raise money for their charities.
- Two free silent disco events will take place on the ice rink on Thursday, December 7, and Thursday, December 14 from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. In case of inclement weather, Silent Disco will be relocated in the Simcona Gingerbread House.
- Bar Trivia will take place inside the Triple-O Lodge on Thursday, December 14 from 5 to 7 p.m. hosted by Rochester Pub Trivia.
More Free Events & Activities This Year!
- Free ice skating and free skate rentals presented by Wegmans throughout the 17 days of Roc Holiday Village’s operating hours, plus 5 days between Christmas and New Year’s. See the full schedule on rocholidayvillage.com.
- Santa’s Workshop – The indoor heated tent features free visits and photos with Santa, free cookies courtesy of Wegmans, and Santa Text Express for guests when they arrive to provide their name and number and they will receive a text when it’s their turn with Santa. Plus, mail your letters for Santa and receive a reply if received by Sunday, December 10. There will be an African American Santa on Thursday, December 7 and Wednesday, December 20 from 4 to 8 p.m.
- Crafts for kids in the Simcona Gingerbread House – an indoor heated tent – presented by Brooklyn Robot Foundry, Boy Scouts of America Seneca Waterways Council, City of Rochester, Girl Scouts of Western New York, Home Depot, Macaroni Kid, Memorial Art Gallery and Rochester Pipeline.
- Holiday celebrations presented by the Rochester Area Community Foundation in the Simcona Gingerbread House include Hanukkah on Sunday, December 3; Kwanzaa on Sunday, December 10; Three Kings’ Day on Friday, December 15; and Christmas on Sunday, December 17.
- Ryan Callahan Foundation Skill Competition for kids in groups for ages 10 and under and 11 to 16 Sunday, December 17 from 10 a.m. to noon. Space is limited and advance registration is required. Sign up online by visiting rocholidayvillage.com.
- Curling Demonstration and Instruction presented by Rochester Curling Club on Saturday, December 9 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Sled Hockey Demonstration presented by Rochester Sled Hawks on Saturday, December 9 from 4 to 6 p.m.
- Genesee Figure Skating Club performance on Sunday, December 10 from 1 to 1:30 p.m.
Thomas Creek Figure Skating Club performance on Saturday, December 16 from noon to 12:30.
- Live music on the Buckingham Properties Stage inside the Triple-O Lodge on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and select Sundays.
- School of the Arts Jazz Ensemble Carolers in and around The Village on Saturday, December 2 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
- Band Karaoke on the Buckingham Properties Stage inside the Triple-O Lodge every Wednesday evening along with a live band.
- Arcade games inside the Triple-O Lodge
- Have fun Exploring the Village in three ways – Scavenger Hunt, Adventure Map, and Photo Quest. Exploring the Village is free and sponsored by Visit Rochester. Details will be posted on rocholidayvillage.com.
- On closing night, Saturday, December 23 at approximately 8 p.m., Prime Time Brass will perform around The Village and parade with Santa before he returns to The North Pole.
More Shopping, Eating and Drinking
- The Triple-O Lodge – The indoor heated tent includes cozy lounge seating and communal tables plus a bar with wine, beer, hard cider, hard seltzer, mulled wine, and sparkling wine. Each day to raise proceeds, a rotation of local charities will take over The Giving Cup hot cocoa bar.
- Shop, eat and drink from 23 retail vendors each week for a total of 50 different regional businesses over the course of the 17-day event. The outdoor Shopping Village is sponsored by the Democrat and Chronicle. The complete list of retailers is posted online at rocholidayvillage.com.
- Shop Roc Holiday Village official merchandise, one-of-a-kind keepsakes and collector items.
- Outdoor seating sponsored by the YMCA and an outdoor bar are back. Guests can meet up with friends and warm up around the fire pits with their beverage of choice.
- Mini Makers Markets features over 20 different local artists, crafters, designers, DIYers, and confectioneries who will sell their goods on Wednesday, December 13 and Wednesday, December 20 from 4 to 9 p.m. inside the Simcona Gingerbread House. A complete list of Mini Makers is posted online at rocholidayvillage.com.
- Frosty’s Food Court – A rotation of food trucks will be located outside on Court St. Outdoor picnic table seating will be available. The lineup of food offerings will be announced at a later date.
Private Events – Private events can be booked for large parties in the Triple-O Lodge for 50 to 250 people or in the large igloos – Igloo Inns – that hold between 30 to 40 people. Both private settings offer additional catering options. To book a private event, contact Roc Holiday Village by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for private events and email@example.com for Igloo Inns.
Parking – Roc Holiday Village does not operate any parking but there are many surface lots and ramp parking garages conveniently located nearby. Metered parking will be available on area streets, plus at the Washington Square Garage, Allpro Parking Garage at the Five Star Bank Building, Court Street Garage, Midtown Garage, and Fairway Parking. Court St. between Chestnut St. and Manhattan Square Dr. will be closed to thru traffic during the hours when the Village is open.
About Roc Holiday Village
Roc Holiday Village is Rochester, New York’s favorite, magical winter festival! Delighting people of all ages, Roc Holiday Village 2023 is celebrating its fifth anniversary this year, and will present 17 days of enchanting festivities from December 1 to December 23. The downtown festival features outdoor seating and fire pits, free ice skating and skate rentals, a unique shopping village, indoor and outdoor bars with tasty food and drinks, free visits with Santa, hand-crafted goods, cozy winter igloos, free crafts for kids, holiday celebrations, live music, private events, nightlife and more. In 2022, Roc Holiday Village drew more than 140,000 people of all ages to the heart of downtown Rochester at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Memorial Park. Roc Holiday Village is produced by Rochester natives Jenna Manetta Knauf, owner of Bella Events Group; Kelli Marsh, owner of Kelli Marsh photography; and Sean McCarthy, owner of McCarthy Tents & Events.