San Diego's Holiday Season in Full Swing

The holiday season has officially started, and it's only going to get more festive. 

A plethora of Christmas events and parades gave a kick-start to San Diego's holiday season this weekend. 

The California Center for the Arts in Escondido held their Holiday Tree Lighting and Winter Wonderland Festival, the 54th annual North Park Toy Parade marched down University Ave., Chula Vista’s Starlight Parade was held and Little Italy lit their 25-foot tree.

Encinitas and Ocean Beach also held their respective holiday parades.

Likely the most attended, Balboa Park’s December Nights closed their final evening Saturday with an expected crowd of around 350,000 for Friday and Saturday. The two-day festival, in its 40th year, has organ music, a tree lighting, food from around the world and free admission to park museums.

But the celebrations are hardy over. Here’s a list of a few more events coming up this month. 

Dec. 9, 3:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.

Christmas in the Park 

Poway’s Christmas in the Park features horse-drawn hayrides, carolers and a visit from Santa.

Dec. 10, 3 p.m.

Gaslamp Holiday Pet Parade

Dogs, cats and guinea pigs decked in their merriest will hoof it down 5th Ave.

Dec. 10 and 17, 5 p.m. 

Port of San Diego Bay Parade of Lights

The 46th annual boat parade’s theme is Arrrgh! A Pirate’s Christmas.

Dec. 8 - Jan.1

Jungle Bells

The San Diego Zoo will be lighting the night will electric elephants, penguins, hippos and more. Holiday music and an animal-themed Christmas tree lighting round out the visit.

Through Jan. 6 (SeaWorld) and Jan. 1 (Legoland)

SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration and Holidays at Legoland

Singing elves, a winter holiday market and the largest Lego Christmas tree in the world make for a fun holiday time at Legoland, while Rudolph and the Abominable Snowmonster are ready to give some hugs at SeaWorld.

Through Jan. 7

Global Winter Wonderland

For the first time this year, SDCCU Stadium features an international holiday celebration complete with lights, games, food, shopping and even a chance to write a letter the big guy.

All month


Several local theaters are presenting Christmas shows, including “Dr. Seuss’s How The Grinch Stole Christmas” at the Old Globe, The “Festival of Christmas” and “An American Christmas” at the Lamb’s Players in Coronado, “Miracle on 34th Street” at the Horton Grand and “A Christmas Carol” at the Cygnet. “Noel Noel,” a holiday pops style sing-along features the San Diego Symphony together with the San Diego Master Chorale and the San Diego Children’s Choir.

Ice Skating

For the toe loop and salchow inclined, the Hotel del Coronado, Viejas, Liberty Station, Hilton by the Bay and (for the first time this year) Del Mar all have festive outdoor rinks. 

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