Each December, thousands gather on the banks of the Delaware River to watch the reenactment of General George Washington’s daring Christmas Day river crossing. During this family-friendly event, several hundred reenactors in Continental military dress listen to an inspiring speech by Washington and then row across the river in replica Durham boats.
The reenactment is held each year on December 25 at 1 p.m. Those who cannot attend on Christmas can watch a full dress rehearsal about two and a half weeks before the Christmas Day Crossing.
During the dress rehearsal, the reenactors row across the river in uniform just as they do on Christmas, plus additional activities and demonstrations take place throughout the historic village. There is an admission charge for the dress rehearsal. The Christmas Day crossing is free. Proceeds from the dress rehearsal support future programs in the park.
River crossings are contingent upon safe conditions for participants. During the Crossing, visitors are to remain behind the rope lines. We suggest visitors arrive before 1 p.m. on Christmas Day to ensure a good place along the viewing line.
Washington Crossing Historic Park and the Friends of Washington Crossing Park organize the annual Christmas Crossing of the Delaware River. All registrants who meet eligibility requirements are welcome to participate. For more information about how to participate, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For the Christmas Crossing, only the role of George Washington is established and recognized by the Park. All other participants play the generic role of an officer or a troop member without distinction. A participant is not required to be a part of any reenacting unit, society or historical association.
River crossings are contingent upon safe conditions for all participants. However, even if the conditions do not allow for crossing, ceremonies, speeches and commemorative activities still occur which require troop and boatmen participation.