Among the many delights of the holiday season is a myriad of free or low-cost celebrations for single parents and their children to choose from. Since money is not a worry in this case, single parents will want rely on their excellent time-management skills in order to squeeze in all the holiday fun. So make room in your schedule because you will NOT want to miss out on these FREE Christmas activities.
- Are you and the kids ready to see Santa make an early appearance? Then you will not want to miss downtown Fullerton’s Winter Market on December 6 from 12 – 4 p.m. Be sure to arrive early because Santa will arrive from the North Pole. Kids get to enjoy face painting and a bounce house while adults can take advantage of a variety of food booths, holiday shopping, a beer and wine garden, and live entertainment. Fullerton’s Winter Market is located in downtown Fullerton on Wilshire Avenue between Harbor Blvd and Pomona Avenue.
- Yorba Linda’s East Lake Village Christmas Boat Parade is second only to Disneyland’s Electrical Parade and is described as a mini version of the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade. Each boat is uniquely decorated by the owner with countless vibrant lights and brilliant decorations that reflect in the lake for a dazzling Christmastime effect. Visitors should plan ahead to secure a spot off of Yorba Linda Blvd. and Village Center Drive since this event is very popular. The parade will be held on December 13 and 14 at 6:30 p.m. with food trucks available from 4 – 9 p.m.
- Pick a night in December to don your footed pajamas, grab a hot cup of hot cocoa, and pile the kids in the car to witness the best neighborhood Christmas light displays in SoCal. In Brea, you’ll see row upon row of merry homes at Kramer and Birch. Take a turn into Fullerton at North Yale across from Fullerton College, and you’ll be amazed by multicolored Christmas ornament orbs lining the community trees. In Rancho Cucamonga, make your way to Thoroughbred Lane for a winter wonderland created by the neighboring community for the past two decades.
- Come see Knott’s Berry Farm’s ghost town converted into an old-fashioned “Knott’s Merry Farm” Christmas Craft Village, complete with Calico Carolers singing throughout the streets, festive performances of “The Gift of the Magi” and “A Christmas Carol” at the Bird Cage Theater, and a Christmas show at the Calico Saloon. Shop at artisan craft booths, enjoy hot mulled cider, and even visit an authentic one-room schoolhouse. Knott’s Christmas Crafts Village begins November 22 through January 4 and is free to the public Monday through Thursday. For more information, see: https://www.knotts.com/merryfarm/things-to-do
- For a spectacular holiday light display at the magically transformed Mission Inn, take a ride out to Riverside’s Festival of Lights. Feast on a variety of sweet treats from neighboring vendors like fresh gingerbread cookies, spice cake, hot sugar-sprinkled donuts, or gourmet cupcakes. Covered horse-drawn carriage rides that encircle the Mission Inn are also an entertaining treat for a nominal fee. For location information, see the website: http://www.missioninn.com/festival-of-lights-en.html
- For those who like gourmet cheese, meats, and candies, drive out to Tom’s Farms for a double treat. Tom’s Farms free Christmas Light Shows begin Thanksgiving weekend and then every Friday through Sunday in December. The kiddies will be excited to see Santa and have their picture taken with him, too. See website for more information: http://shop.tomsfarms.com/Default.asp?Redirected=Y
- Bazaar del Mundo in Old Town San Diego is a must-see for families who have some extra time for a day trip. Vibrant Mexican Christmas décor in every color provides an ethnic holiday experience for visitors. Specialty shops, folk art, historical exhibitions, and authentic Mexican food are among the pleasures you’ll experience to ignite your holiday spirit and give you a break from the Christmas chaos. For more information, see http://www.bazaardelmundo.com/