SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- In addition to its fascinating Gold Rush past, the Sacramento area is rich with an amazing array of state-of-the-art museums and historic sites that offer visitors the chance to explore California's fine art, history, science, and wildlife treasures all year long. In December, many of the 30 members of Sacramento Association of Museums (SAM) are celebrating the holidays with special events and activities, including:

Holiday Music Program at the California State Capitol Museum
- Through December 23 

Get ready for some holiday fun on your next visit to the California State Capitol Museum in December! To set a festive stage and spread holiday cheer, beautiful vintage decorations create a lovely backdrop for a variety of diverse, amazing and free live holiday musical performances in the Capitol Rotunda each day. For a complete and updated performance schedule, please visit or call 916-324-0333 for more information.

Historic Folsom Holiday Home Tour 2012 - December 7 & 8
Presented in part by the Folsom History Museum, visitors will enjoy touring seven charming historic sites embellished in their finest holiday decor, all to benefit the Folsom Historical Society and the Murer House Foundation! Tickets are available at a variety of locations including the Folsom History Museum. For more information, please call 916-985-2707 or visit

Hands on History: A Simple Emigrant Christmas & Candlelight Tours at Sutter's Fort State Historic Park - December 8 
Sutter's Fort has two interactive and fun "Hands on History" events scheduled on one very special day in December! Throughout the day, Fort visitors will step back in time to holidays past with festive, hands-on activities such as dipping candles, making cornhusk dolls and crafting holiday ornaments as part of special "A Simple Emigrant Christmas" activities. Then, when darkness falls, guests will see Sutter's Fort in a new light -- by candlelight! Guides will lead small groups of visitors into the Fort's more intimate rooms for intriguing glimpses into the private lives of those who uprooted their families for a better life in early California. For more information, please call 916-445-4422 or visit

Gift Wrapping Demos at the Roseville Utility Exploration Center - December 15 
Visit the Roseville Utility Exploration Center between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. for a free and family-friendly holiday event where you'll learn ways to wrap your favorite holiday gifts using materials like cloth, recycled maps, newspaper, ribbons, bows and more! You'll learn creative ways to wrap gifts without having to purchase and then throw away wrapping paper. For more information, call 916-746-1550 or

Octopus Ornaments at the Discovery Museum Science & Space Center
- December 15 & 16 

Tis' the season...for mollusk fun! Add a little science to your holidays with a yarn octopus ornament. Kids 12 and under craft the décor to take home as a souvenir from an exciting visit to the Discovery Museum. Also, be sure to visit the play spaces: Healthy Bones Diner, Doctor's Office, Funny Bones Theater and much more. For more information, call 916-808-3942 or visit

For more information about SAM, its partners and/or these and other events and activities, visit