Friday, Dec. 5 and Saturday, Dec. 6
A holiday weekend hosted by Sonrise Community Church (8805 North Magnolia Ave., Santee), Winter Nights will be held from 6 – 9 p.m. each night. The free event will feature snow sledding, outdoor Christmas movies, a craft fair and Christmas carolers. There will also be a vehicle Christmas light competition, so make sure to decorate your ride! Visit sonrise.net for more information.
Holiday Harmonies concert
Sunday, Dec. 7
The California Note Catchers Chorus, a La Mesa-based group, will present this holiday concert along with their chapter of Harmony, Inc. — a women’s four-part a cappella chorus — and special guest, True Thomas the Storyteller. True Thomas (also known as Robert Seutter) has been telling stories for over 25 years and will bring tales from Celtic and Medieval Christmas traditions and more. The event will be held at 2 p.m. at Paradise Village (2700 East Fourth St., National City). Tickets are $12 each and can be purchased at the door or in advance by calling 619-889-0299. Visit californianotecatchers.com for more information about the group.
Annual holiday hayride
Sunday, Dec. 7
United Church of Christ La Mesa (5940 Kelton Ave., La Mesa) will host this annual family holiday event, which takes attendees around the neighborhood on horse-drawn buggies while filling the air with Christmas music. The route taken through nearby streets is known for homes decorated with beautiful holiday displays. Four trips are planned at 6:30, 7, 7:30 and 8 p.m. (an additional ride at 8:30 p.m. will be added if needed). Back at the church, hot dogs, chili, cider, hot cocoa and gingerbread will await. Various craft projects, starting at 5:30 p.m., will be available for children. Visit ucclm.org for more information.
State Sen. Joel Anderson’s holiday legislative open house
Wednesday, Dec. 10
This holiday open house is free and open to the public. It gives individuals the chance to receive a 2014 legislative update and submit ideas for improving state government. The event runs from 6 – 8 p.m. at Toyota of El Cajon (965 Arnele Ave., El Cajon). There will be food and refreshments for attendees but an RSVP is required. To reserve your spot call Senator Anderson’s office at 619-565-3136, email firstname.lastname@example.org or RSVP online at district36.cssrc.us.
Annual Christmas in the Village
Friday, Dec. 12 and Saturday, Dec. 13
Each year the La Mesa Village Merchants Association transforms La Mesa Village into a holiday wonderland for two nights. This year’s street fair will include a holiday parade held each night at 5 p.m. with a pre-parade “Salute to America” at 4:30 p.m. marking the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War and honoring Vietnam veterans.
Village festivities will include food and commercial vendors, live music on multiple stages and strolling minstrels, carolers and street entertainers. For children there will be carnival rides, pony rides, puppet shows and a chance to meet Santa Claus at the Goodwill Plaza (8250 La Mesa Blvd.). Santa will be in the plaza following the parade until the end of the night and there is no charge to see him. Shops and restaurants along La Mesa Boulevard will stay open late during the event, which runs till 10 p.m. each night, for extra holiday shopping time.
Christmas in the Village also supports several local charities with its Toy and Joy food and gift drive throughout both evenings. Bring a new, unwrapped toy, gift card or nonperishable food donation to Cosmos Coffee House (8278 La Mesa Blvd.), Sotheby’s International Realty (8310 La Mesa Blvd.) or First Republic Bank (8347 La Mesa Blvd.).
The event is free with free (but limited) parking in the area. For more information or to become a sponsor or vendor, visit lmvma.com.
Christmas in the City
Friday, Dec. 12 – Sunday, Dec. 14
Sonrise Community Church (8805 North Magnolia Ave., Santee) will present their yearly Christmas program at various times during the weekend. The event includes contemporary and traditional Christmas songs with a live band. Christmas in the City is free and open to everyone. Friday’s event is at 7 p.m., Saturday’s starts at 5 p.m. and Sunday’s performances are at 9 and 11 a.m. For more information visit sonrise.net.
Voices for Children volunteer information session
Saturday, Dec. 13
The holidays are a great time to think about giving back to our community. Voices for Children is a local nonprofit that recruits, trains and supervises Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs). The CASAs play an integral part in the lives of foster children providing a consistent adult presence for kids who have been removed from their home due to abuse, neglect or abandonment. CASAs also act as the eyes and ears of the court and advocate on their assigned child’s behalf. The information session is the first step in becoming a CASA; this one will be held at Spring Valley Public Library (835 Kempton St.). For additional information or to find another information session visit speakupnow.org.
Sing-along Christmas Caroling
Sunday, Dec. 14
Gina Seashore, known locally as “That Music Lady,” will lead the caroling at this free, family event at the Mt. Helix Park Amphitheatre (4905 Mt. Helix Drive, La Mesa). Musicians will accompany carolers, so be ready to flex your pipes. Nonperishable food items will be collected for distribution by Journey Church’s food pantry. Free coffee and hot cocoa will be provided and baked goods will be provided by local mother-daughter philanthropy group SPRITES. The event will be complete with a visit from Santa Claus to hear the holiday wishes of young attendees. All event parking and shuttles will be available at the San Miguel Fire Station (10105 Vivera Drive, La Mesa) beginning at 6:15 p.m. with the event concluding at 8 p.m. Visit mthelixpark.org for more information.