Garden Grove Journal
All three cities are planning major events, and many schools and churches also have celebrations and observances as the end-of-the-year bustle speeds up.
The City of Garden Grove has two events planned, one free and open to the public, and one designed for the little ones that carries an admission charge.
On Saturday, the annual Winterfest will be held at the Atlantis Play Center, 13630 Atlantis Way (behind Garden Grove Park, off Westminster Avenue) from 4-7:30 p.m. Admission is $6, but kids under 2 years old are admitted free with an accompanying adult.
You can knock $2 off that price by bringing a new, unopened toy for the “Spark of Love” toy drive. There’s a limit of one ticket per toy.
The event will feature games, crafts, train rides, entertainment, a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, along with 30 tons of snow (10 more than last year) for sledding, snowman construction and other frosty frolics.
Garden Grove’s second event is Tuesday at the Village Green Park near the Clock Tower at Euclid and Main streets in the downtown area. It’s the annual Tree-Lighting Ceremony, as Mayor Bill Dalton illuminates a 40-foot-high Christmas tree.
The event, starting at 6:30 p.m., is free and will feature entertainment, holiday refreshments, a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus and a flurry of snow. The tree will remain up through the first week of January 2012.
Westminster’s major holiday event will be Monday in the Civic Center, 8200 Westminster Blvd. (just east of Beach Boulevard) from 6-7:30 p.m. It’s the annual Holiday Tree-Lighting ceremony, as Mayor Margie Rice and Santa light up the municipal tannenbaum. There will be carols, hot chocolate and cookies and more.
Guests are invited to bring canned goods for donation to the needy, as well as dress warmly for this outdoor event.
In Stanton, tonight (Thursday) is the night. The Christmas Tree-Lighting will be from 5:30-7 p.m. at the City Hall, 7800 Katella Ave. (at Cedar Street, west of Beach Boulevard). There will be choir entertainment, visits from Santa and the tree-lighting.
The event is free and open to the public.
Students (and some teachers) will wait a little longer to celebrate the holiday season. The Garden Grove Unified School District’s winter recess is Dec. 19-30. The Westminster School District and Huntington Beach Union High School District (Westminster High School) are on the same schedule, but the Anaheim Union High School District (Western and Magnolia high schools) will be out Dec. 23-Jan. 6.