An Insider’s Guide to January Events in the Hudson Valley

Hudson River tourism directors share their top picks for places to go, sights to see, and things to do throughout the month of January.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. There are a ton of things to do in the Hudson Valley each month. With the arrival of winter comes skiing, snowboarding, tubing, snowshoeing, ice skating, and snow-covered hikes. Or, if you’d prefer not to brave the cold, explore the history of the Hudson Valley at historic sites like Olana in Hudson and Schuyler Mansion (any Hamilton fans in the house?) in Albany.

To help scout out the best events in the Valley in January, we reached out to local tourism directors from Albany to Westchester for their top picks for things to do. Check out their selections, then get planning!

Albany County

Salutations of the Season

Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site, Albany
January 7, 4-7 p.m.

Step back in time to the 17th century at this annual Twelfth Night celebration at one of the most incredible historic sites in the Hudson Valley! Complete with fare from the period, live music, re-enactors, wassail toasts, and a bonfire, this is the perfect family outing or date in Albany. Tickets run $2 for children 12 and younger, $6 for seniors and students, and $7 for adults.

Albany Chefs’ Wine & Dine Festival for the Arts

Albany Capital Center, Albany
January 26-28

Finally back in person for 2023, the Wine & Dine Festival for the Arts celebrates local food and wine with the aim of providing “sustainable funding for the not-for-profit arts community in Albany.” This three-day festival kicks off with Mayor’s Opening Celebration at City Hall, promising hors d’oeuvres and wine aplenty.

Candlelight: From Bach to The Beatles

The Kenmore Ballroom, Albany
January 27, 6:30 p.m., 9 p.m.

You have two opportunities in January (and another two in March) to catch the Listeso Quartet’s performance of songs by Bach and the Beatles. The players will juxtapose compositions like Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto with classics such as “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” “Strawberry Fields Forever,” and “Here Comes the Sun.” Tickets run $45-65, depending on proximity to the stage.

Columbia County

Chasing Icebergs: Art and a Disappearing Landscape

Olana State Historic Site, Hudson
Through January

As if we needed any incentive to visit Olana—the former home and property of Frederic Edwin Church, one of the most important members of the Hudson River School of landscape painting—this exhibition promises compelling artworks by Church as well as several contemporary artists. Whether your obsession is art, science, or history, there is a ton to learn from the paintings and photographs of “icebergs and Arctic exploration.”

Wassailing! Winter Celebration

Little Apple Cidery, Hillsdale
January 14, 6-8 p.m.

The Oxford English dictionary defines “wassailing” as “drink plentiful amounts of alcohol and enjoy oneself with others in a noisy, lively way.” If that sounds like your idea of a good time, spend this Saturday evening at Little Apple Cidery, where you’ll “wake the tree spirits and shoo the evil demons to ensure a bountiful harvest this year” all while enjoying glass after glass of delicious cider.

Weird Science With Professor Sparks

FASNY Museum of Firefighting, Hudson
January 28, 10:30 a.m.

At this event, little ones will learn all about fire from Professor Sparks and “her robot canine companion” at this interactive lesson. Admission to the museum is free, as is lesson, including all materials required for the hands-on experiment. Afterwards, check out the galleries of Hudson or spend a few hours at Olana State Historic Site.

Dutchess County

Visit the Trevor Zoo

The Trevor Zoo, Millbrook
Open daily, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Make a reservation to visit the Trevor Zoo, home to “170 exotic and indigenous animals.” The six-acre zoo—which is located at Millbrook School, a private high school—is a perfect day trip in the quaint Hudson Valley town.

Dancing With the Stars

Mid-Hudson Civic Center, Poughkeepsie
January 18, 8 p.m.

Everyone’s favorite dance show is touring once again! Snag tickets to see all of your favorite dancing pros (plus, special guests) at this evening of “dazzling routines in every style, jaw-dropping talent, and non-stop entertainment.” Tickets for this January event start at $55.

Orange County

Winter Wine Dinner

Blu Pointe Restaurant, Newburgh
January 12, 6:30 p.m.

What can we say? We love a prix fixe meal. Savor the best of Blu Pointe at this Winter Wine Dinner, during which patrons will move through four courses paired with top-notch vino. The first course is a cozy cacio e pepe alongside a California chardonnay. Next, diners will nosh on a brasserie salad with duck confit and sip pinot noir. The main course is a beef Wellington paired with a hearty glass of Perricone. To finish, diners will dig into a chocolate souffle complemented by a French dessert wine.

The Georgia 5: ’80s Dance Party

Tin Barn Brewing, Chester
January 14, 6-9 p.m.

The Georgia 5 is known around the Hudson Valley for groovy live performances that get partygoers up off their feet. Combine their tunes with some of the most delicious craft beer in the Hudson Valley for a Saturday outing you won’t soon forget! What’s more, attendees needn’t leave for dinner; Tin Barn serves a range of red and white brick-oven pizzas like its chicken parm pie, meatball pie, and classic cheese pie.

Live Music by The Robert Hill Band

Meadow Blues Coffee, Chester
January 21, 3 p.m.

Hailing from North Little Rock, Arkansas, Robert Hill is a household name in the world of New York City blues. Hill was even inducted into the New York Blues Hall of Fame in 2014 after decades of gigging in the Big Apple. Seize the opportunity to see him play upstate at Meadow Blues during this January event, then head next door to Rushing Duck for a brew or two.

Putnam County

Skiing, Snowshoeing, and Ice Skating

Multiple locations in Putnam County

If it’s winter fun you’re after, head to Putnam County for some of the best skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating, and winter hiking in the Hudson Valley. At Thunder Ridge Ski Area in Patterson, traverse all 22 trails or take advantage of their ski lessons. Tucked within Clarence Fahnestock Memorial State Park, Fahnestock Winter Park offers trails and hills for skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and tubing. If you’re more a skater than a skier, spend an afternoon at Brewster Ice Arena.

Rockland County

The Lifespan of a Fact

Elmwood Playhouse, Nyack
January 13 – February 4

Theater buffs of the Hudson Valley would be remiss to miss this production at Nyack’s Elmwood Playhouse. In The Lifespan of a Fact, based on an essay by John D’Agata, a fact-checker for a major publication—played by Daniel Radcliffe in the original production—challenges the authenticity of the work of a major writer.

Mikhail Voskresensky in Concert

Union Arts Center, Sparkill
January 15, 3 p.m.

Internationally acclaimed pianist Mikhail Voskresensky will grace the stage at the Union Arts Center with a two-hour solo concert. He will perform selections composed by Mozart, Chopin, and Beethoven. Tickets are available online for $40 or at the door for $50.

Rockland Arts Festival

Online and in-person at various locations
January 29 – February 10

This annual celebration of art and artists in Rockland County returns with two weeks of exciting events. The January event kicks off on January 29 with a virtual reception, featuring works by artists like Kacey Warbrick, Robin Kline, and Erwin Ong. The additional in-person and virtual programming includes a Q&A with curators, a talk by Broadway performer Robert Montano, and a writers’ roundtable. Tickets are available online.

Ulster County

Swing Dancing With the Swing Shift Orchestra

White Eagle Hall, Kingston
January 7, 7:30 p.m.

Maybe you’ve made a New Year’s resolution to get your body moving more in 2023, or perhaps you simply love to dance. Regardless of your motive, it’s hard not to have a great time at a swing dance. The evening commences at 7:30 p.m. with a half-hour lesson, so beginners needn’t worry about the learning curve. Dancers looking for even more instruction can attend the technique clinic beforehand for an additional fee.

Robert Burke Warren’s Bowie Birthday Bash

The Colony, Woodstock
January 14, 7 p.m.

From A Space Odyssey to Blackstar, Robert Burke Warren takes us on a journey via covers by one of the 20th century’s most iconic rock-n-rollers via this January event. The annual party in homage of Bowie’s birthday returns for the fourth year with special appearances from Rhett Miller of Old 97’s, Frank McGinnis of Frankie & His Fingers, and more. Purchase tickets in advance for a reduced rate of $25; they run $28 at the door.

Catskill Ice Climbing Festival

Various locations in Ulster County
January 21-23

Looking for a new hobby? It’s the perfect time to try ice climbing—later this month, the Catskill Ice Climbing Festival will commence with three days of lessons on “all the skills and techniques you need to get out on ice.” Each seven-and-a-half-hour course costs $195, covering topics like “Basic Ice Movement,” “Steep Ice Techniques,” and “Mixed Climbs & Dry Tooling.”

Westchester County

Restaurant Month

Downtown White Plains
Through January 30

All January long, grab lunch or dinner in downtown White Plains in celebration of the city’s third annual Restaurant Month. Establishments like Bellos Mexican Grill, Freebird Kitchen and Bar, and Little Drunken Chef will offer “diverse menu options” for lunch and dinner.

Alan Jacobson’s 30-Year Artistic Journey

Irvington Public Library, Irvington
January 7, 2 p.m.

Calling all art connoisseurs of Westchester! You’re invited to the reception of Alan Jacobson’s solo show at the Irvington Public Library. For over three decades, Jacobson, who is a neuroscientist and professor by day, “has been drawn to representations of imagined people, landscapes, and abstractions rendered with wood and paint.”

Harry Potter: A Hidden Forest Experience

Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park, Yorktown Heights
Through January 22

There are only a few more weeks to experience this magical attraction in Westchester! Snag your tickets to “A Hidden Forest Experience,” where Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park transforms into a “bewitching” woodland right out of a Harry Potter novel. Muggles and magicians alike can spot centaurs, hippogriffs, Patronuses, and more, making this a can’t-miss January event.