Nutcracker in the Castle: 10th Anniversary

November 18, 2016 to January 9, 2017

Celebrating 10 years of delighting audiences, the Paine presents the scenes of the beloved Nutcracker story within the historic estate. From the opening Party Scene with a giant Christmas tree to the magical Land of Sweets and the enchanting Sugar Plum Fairy, the tale unfolds throughout elaborately decorated rooms with a mesmerizing array of sights, sounds and surprises.

 

There are three different ways to visit and enjoy the fantasy experience of Nutcracker in the Castle. Guests may take Self-Guided Tours, Candlelight Tours, and Guided Tours, with each style of tour offered at separate times. In addition to tours, guests are invited to visit the Sugar Plum Fairy’s Cupcake Café for a scrumptious treat!  See below for more details about the types of tours, their dates and times, and the hours of the café.

Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith
Downton Abbey (PBS) Season 1, 2010Shown: Maggie Smith

Self-guided Tours

On Self-guided Tours guests journey through more than twenty rooms and spaces, which are elaborately decorated as the fantastic scenes of the Nutcracker story. On the first floor each setting features a large storybook with illustrations that reveal a portion of the fairy tale. On the second floor the rooms portray the home and lifestyle of the Stahlbaum family–Clara and her parents and brother–as well as the workshop of Godfather Drosselmeyer along with a wide variety of finely crafted wooden Nutcrackers. 

Through January 9, 2017
Mondays–Saturdays, 11:00 am–4:00 pm

Plus: Sunday, Jan. 1, 11:00 am–4:00 pm*

Closed Nov. 24; open Dec. 24 & 31

$11 Adult, $7 Youth (ages 5–17)
Members FREE
No reservation necessary

*Please note: On Sundays (except Jan. 1), the Paine is NOT open for self-guided tours. On Sundays, the Paine is open for Guided Tours only, which require reservations, and all Guided Tours are sold-out. Please visit Monday through Saturday for self-guided tours.

 

Guided Tours

All Guided Tours are sold-out. Please visit for a Self-guided Tour or Candlelight Tour.

A Guided Tour of Nutcracker in the Castle brings the characters and scenes of the fairy tale to life. The tour begins with a festive party in the “Ballroom” with a string quartet playing Tchaikovsky’s renowned music. While guests enjoy punch and cookies, Godfather Drosselmeyer joins the party and begins telling the unbelievable story of Clara and the Nutcracker Prince. He then leads guests through the rooms of the Paine mansion, which are elaborately decorated as settings of the tale. His story culminates in the “Lands of Afar” where youth dancers perform selections from the ballet. Guests then tour second floor rooms which are fancifully decorated as Clara’s family home as well as Drosselmeyer’s workshop. Youth ballet performances are presented by Valley Academy for the Arts.

Through January 8, 2017
Saturdays, 5:00–8:00 pm
Sundays, 12:00–3:30 pm

Plus: Thursdays, Dec. 22 & 29 and
Tuesday, Dec. 27, 5:00-8:00 pm

No guided tours on Dec. 24, 25 & 31
and Jan. 1

Tours begin every 30 min. and last 1 hour.

$23 Adult ($18 Member)
$19 Youth (ages 17 and under; $15 Member)
Reservations required

All Guided Tours are sold-out. For questions about existing reservations, please call (920) 235-6903.

Candlelight Tours

Candlelight Tours offer guests an especially entrancing way to take a self-guided tour of the Nutcracker display. The lights of the “castle” are dimmed and the settings are illuminated by the glow of more than seventy Christmas trees. As guests enter, they are handed electric candles in brass holders to carry as they wander through the glowing rooms. This special self-guided tour experience is popular with people of all ages, especially children and couples. 

Through January 6, 2017
Fridays, 4:30–7:30 pm

Plus: Monday, Dec. 26 and Wednesday,
Dec. 28, 4:30–7:30 pm

$11 Adult, $7 Youth (ages 5–17)
Members FREE
No reservation necessary

 

Sugar Plum Fairy’s Cupcake Café

In addition to tours of Nutcracker in the Castle, guests are invited to visit the Sugar Plum Fairy’s Cupcake Café for a scrumptious treat! With the Sugar Plum Fairy herself as hostess, the café serves cupcakes and hot cocoa in a fairyland setting within the Paine’s conservatory. No reservation is necessary to visit the café; please note the café hours and coordinate visits before or after Nutcracker tours accordingly. Cupcakes are made by Tamara’s the Cake Guru.

Through January 8, 2017
Fridays, 5:00-7:30 pm
Saturdays, 1:00-3:30 pm & 5:00-7:30 pm
Sundays, 1:00-3:30 pm

Plus: Thursday, Dec. 22 and Monday-
Thursday, Dec. 26-29, 5:00-7:30 pm

Closed Dec. 24, 25 & 31 and Jan. 1;
open Dec. 30

No reservation necessary

 

Art Workshops for Families

On select Saturdays, the Family Discovery Gallery offers art workshops inspired by the Nutcracker story. Children can create their own ornaments, masks, puppets, action figures, and Nutcrackers. The workshops are free with paid admission (free for Members). For a listing of workshops and more information, visit the Programs page.

 

Location and Parking

The Paine is located at 1410 Algoma Boulevard in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Visitors may park along the street on Algoma Boulevard and Congress Avenue or may use the Paine’s parking lot on Elmwood Avenue. An accessible parking space and a drop-off space are available next to the mansion and can be accessed by entering the property’s driveway on Algoma Boulevard.

Map with Parking Options >

 

Photography

Photography is allowed during Self-guided Tours and Candlelight Tours. Photography is not allowed during Guided Tours except within the first foyer and first large room before the tour begins. Photography is allowed in the Sugar Plum Fairy's Cupcake Café.


Holiday Inspiration

See the mesmerizing sights of Nutcracker in the Castle and find ideas for holiday decorating in this stunning photo gallery. (Banner photo above by Eric Reischl; thumbnail photos above by Eric Reischl and Ken Cravillion)



VIEW PHOTOS

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Hours

Tuesday - Sunday
11:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Plan Your Visit >

Paine Art Center and Gardens

1410 Algoma Blvd
Oshkosh, WI 54901

(920) 235-6903

info@thepaine.org