We are adding more to this page all the time. Your suggestions for links are welcome.
MORE ON THE ANCIENT ORIGINS OF THE SEASON
Circle Sanctuary Winter Solstice Information
Numerous articles by Selena Fox on the holiday season’s origins as well as many creative ways to celebrate.
The history of Yule with the origins. The most important part of any Yule celebration is light – candles and bonfires.
Christmas Traditions in France and Canada
This is a gem…a collaboration between French and Canadian researchers and production teams. Includes lots of info on the origins of all aspects of holiday celebration.
Yule in Iceland
Genuine fun. A fresh look at ancient and modern traditions (of which there seem to be multitudes!). Lots of wonderful folklore here.
The Holidays for Asatru
This page describes all holidays for Asatru, the Norse Pagan religion…it has a lengthy descriptions of Norse holidays and Festivals.
Winter Solstice Celebrations
A whole compendium of cultural and historic info from Religious Tolerance.org.
How the holiday festival season was celebrated in Elizabethan England
Kids Turn Central Christmas Corner
Wendy Hogan has compiled scads of kid-appropriate Christmas (but only Christmas) activities and links in numerous categories.
Family Education Network’s Winter Solstice Activities
Fun quizzes, build your own backyard Stonehenge (or sunwheel, great project!) and more about various sun god mythologies.
Shares solstice plans and ceremonies worldwide.
The Christmas Revels
Performances this year take place in ten cities. Highly recommended.
Here’s a great holiday charity site, where you can select a specific child to help with a donated gift – United Way.
Toys for Tots
The official national site, although I’ve seen many local sites as well. You can even buy and donate here online through links to eToys and Amazon.com.
Ancient Scottish Site — Solstice Webcam
Fantastic! Like Newgrange in Ireland, the 5,000 year-old chambered tomb called Maeshowe in Orkney, Scotland, marks the passage of winter solstice. Each year at winter solstice the setting sun shines through a small aperture above the entrance passage and strikes the back wall of the chamber. The sunset, as seen from within the tomb, is captured live by Webcam everyday through December and January.
This site also enables you to make a donation online, with a secure, centralized channel for many U.S. charities (formerly helping.org).
Only one card for winter solstice or yule, but some other nice images.
Send a Free Web Card
Blue Mountain Arts covers all the holiday bases, including Solstice and Yule (use the search feature to get to them).
Send free animated or musical postcards to friends and loved ones.
Willow Firesong’s Pagan Yule Carol Collection
Extensive…Dozens of ’em (six versions of The Holly and the Ivy alone!) or download the entire collection.
Here’s more than you ever knew about the origins of “Silent Night”.
This section could, of course, dwarf (or should I say elf?) the rest of the listing. With a few good starting points, you’re on your way. You can find all the Santa and shopping sites on your own.
Worldview Christmas: Traditions Around the World
Thorough, comprehensive, if a little academic.
Kate.net’s Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas Page
Well-organized links to just about every imaginable Christmas-related category. Bravo Kate!
Christmas with a humorous twist. This interactive site lets you share your Christmas catastrophes or the most useless gift you’ve ever received, send an electronic Christmas card, and more.
A Victorian Christmas
The Victorians took Christmas to its heights. Here’s a site that tells how to celebrate 19th century style.
Christmas stories by The Net Rag
My favorite part is a Christmas picture story by then-four-year-old Haley Okrzesik.
Chanukah on the Net
Another fine site about Chanukah, this one has lots of information, as well as a design-it-yourself dreidel and a 3-d animated spinning dreidel.
Hanukkah, from JOI
The basic info from the Jewish Outreach Institute.
How to Celebrate Kwanzaa
A very complete reference to all things Kwanzaa.
Circle Sanctuary’s Solstice Planning Guide
Tons of ideas for creating your own ritual or observance with family and/or friends.
A daybook of holidays and celebrations around the world.
Holidays and Festivals in Italy
American ex-patriate Dan Hostetler has compiled a database of literally thousands of cultural events throughout Italy.