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Monday, November 7, 2016

Bay Area Tree Lighting Ceremonies 2016

It's more exciting to watch a giant tree get lit up, than watch your own. So head to these tree lightings for some holiday fun.

SAN FRANCISCO
What: Rec and Park's 87th Annual Holiday Tree Lighting
When: Thursday, December 1, 4-8
Where: McLaren Lodge, Golden Gate Park
Activities: Music performances, snow play, holiday train rides, carnival rides, cookies and Santa visits.

WhatUnion Square, Macy's 27th annual tree lighting
When: Friday, November 25, 2016 at 6 p.m. for the ceremony, actual tree lighting at 6:40
Where: Union Square
Activities: entertainment by Aloe Blacc; it gets crowded so arrive early

WhatGhirardelli Square Tree Lighting
When: Friday, November 25, 2016 (activities 4-9)
Where; Ghirardelli Square
Activities: live music, kids' entertainment, Santa visit, food and gifts to purchase


WhatRitz-Carlton Tree Lighting
When: Thursday, December 1, 2016; activities from 5:30-7:30
Where: 600 Stockton Street
Activities: the tree will be lit by Santa Claus and a helper from the Make-a-Wish Foundation. Dickens-era costumed carolers will perform holiday songs throughout the hotel while you enjoy complementary cider, hot chocolate and cookies. After the ceremony, kids can take photos and visit with Santa in the Terrace Room.

St. Francis Sugar Tree - photo by Peter Medilek, photo courtesy of Westin St. Francis
What"St. Francis Sugar Tree" unveiling
When: November 23, 2016 at 11 a.m.
Where: Westin St. Francis - Landmark Lobby
Activities: Decorations. tree, sugar castle, and St. Francis Enchanted Castle are on display through January 2. The castle is 12 feet high.

What: Presidio Tree Lighting
When: December 2, 2016 at 5:30 p.m.
Where: the Main Post, across from Presidio Community Y (at the corner of Lincoln and Funston)
Activities: Join the Golden Gate Carolers to light the tree and sing holiday classics. Light refreshments and kids’ activities will follow in the Presidio Community Y gymnasium. After the tree lighting, a lantern-lit evening forest walk starts at 6 p.m.

WhatPier 39 Tree Lighting 
When: November 19, 3016 at 5:30-6 p.m. with a full schedule of activities starting at noon
Activities: Live entertainment




Photo courtesy of EmPemm/Flickr*

SAN JOSE
WhatSantana Row’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony
When: November 15, 2016 from 7-7:30, with activities from 5-9 p.m.
Activities: Photos with Santa, live music and carolers, kids' activities, Elf on the Shelf scavenger hunt,

EAST BAY
WhatJack London Square Tree Lighting
When: Friday, December 2, 2016 from 5-7 p.m.
Activities: Santa, live reindeer,
tap dancing Christmas trees, kids' activities.

What: Walnut Creek Broadway Plaza Tree Lighting
When: December 1, 2016 from 6-9 p.m.
Activities: Music, festivities, parade of lights, Santa lighting the tree - plus snow!

MARIN
What: Parade of Lights - Winter Wonderland, San Rafael
When: November 25-26, 2016 - see website for times
Activities: Holiday Marketplace with arts and crafts, live entertainment, children’s activities, free snow sledding, and one of the largest holiday parades in the Bay Area. The event starts at noon Nov 25 with free snow sledding and kids’ activities, a holiday marketplace and the parade begins at 5:30. Following the Parade, Santa, Ms. Claus and other costumed characters arrive with the Mayor of San Rafael to the center of town in the City Plaza to light the official holiday tree. Following the ceremony, Santa and friends are available for a meet and greet with the kids. See the website for the full schedule.


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