Get into the holiday spirit in Oxnard with family-friendly festive events taking place in November and December.
The holiday season kicks off with the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Collection at RiverPark on Saturday, November 16 at 7 p.m. Visitors can enjoy an awe-inspiring laser light and fireworks show accompanied by live entertainment. Free to the public. The Collection at RiverPark also offers several community events during the season.
Photos with Santa begin on November 16 offered Monday-Thursday from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday & Saturdays from 12 noon to 8 p.m.; Sundays from 12 noon to 7 p.m.; and on Christmas Eve from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For the four-legged family members, “Santa Paws Pet Photos” with Santa are offered on Wednesday evenings from November 16 to December 24. Photo packages and pricing vary. Grab the little ones and join Mrs. Claus as she treats youngsters to treats and storytime during “Storytime with Mrs. Claus” taking place in the Annex Food Hall at the Collection on Monday evenings from 6-7 p.m. Children of all ages with Autism or other special needs are invited to “Silent Santa” to experience visits with Santa without crowds, music and additional stimulation. Photo sessions are also offered. Photo packages and pricing vary.
Downtown Oxnard also lights up the sky with the 69th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony set for Friday, December 6 at 5:30 p.m. The fun-filled evening includes festive music, complimentary refreshments, and a visit from Santa! This community favorite event all leads up to the lighting of the 110 feet tall Christmas tree, right in the center of town at Plaza Park, 500 South C Street. Free to the public.
Another hometown favorite, the 58th Annual Oxnard Christmas Parade takes place Saturday, December 7 in Downtown Oxnard along A, 5th and C Streets. Themed, “The Sounds of Christmas,” the parade is the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. Visitors can enjoy a fanfare of animated characters, marching bands, equestrian units, school groups, themed floats and, of course, Santa! Free to the public.Fuel up after the Oxnard Christmas Parade by celebrating one of the most delicious holiday treats – tamales!
The 12th Annual Tamale Festival also takes place on December 7 in Plaza Park featuring authentic home-style tamales served up by local restaurants and vendors, all competing for the title of “best tamale.” Other festival highlights include tamale making demonstrations, eating contest, kids activities and live music. Free to the public.Get ready to run during the 12th Annual Santa to the Sea Marathon and Relay taking place on Sunday, December 8. The race is open to all levels of runners from veterans to first timers. Participants can choose from a half-marathon race to a 5k run/walk or two-person relay. A 1k kids run is also offered in addition to a Diaper Dash for crawlers! Registration fees vary and all proceeds benefit local charities.
Creative bakers share their talents during the 11th Annual Gingerbread Fest at Heritage Square in Downtown Oxnard, December 8-29. Presented by Friends of Heritage Square, visitors can view the elaborate gingerbread houses with free tours offered on Fridays from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sundays from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. While at the Square, visitors can take guided tours of the historic Victorian homes offered on Saturdays and Sundays at $5 per person.Sip on hot cocoa and take a walk or a drive to enjoy the holiday lights that twinkle and shine throughout Christmas Tree Lane located in the Henry T. Oxnard Historic District. This holiday wonderland of decorated houses runs from December 8-26 along “F” & “G” Streets and between 5th and Palm. Free to the public.
Hop aboard a double-decker bus during the Holly Trolley Holiday Light Tours, December 10-12, departing from Centennial Plaza in Downtown Oxnard. Take a tour of Oxnard’s holiday attractions including Christmas Tree Lane, and the Gingerbread House at Heritage Square. Bus tours depart at 6:45 p.m.; 7:30 p.m.; and 8:15 p.m. Cost is $13.50 per person which includes hot cocoa and sweet treats.Lights dance and sparkle across the water during the 54th Annual Parade of Lights in Channel Islands Harbor Saturday, December 14. Themed “Musical Notes & Holiday Floats”, the boat parade starts at 7 p.m. Prior to the parade, visitors can enjoy a full day of holiday activities starting with snowplay at 10 a.m. at the north end of Harbor View Park, off Harbor Boulevard near Marine Emporium Landing. Other activities include arts & crafts and visits and pictures with Santa Claus from noon to 4 p.m. Free of charge to the public.For more information, visit www.visitoxnard.com.
About Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau (Visit Oxnard)Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau (Visit Oxnard) is a non-profit organization designed to increase visitor expenditures through transient occupancy tax, and tourism revenue opportunities through the promotion of Oxnard as a premier travel destination. Oxnard is an easy drive up the coast from Los Angeles or from the northern portions of California. Visitors are encouraged to enjoy Oxnard’s uncrowded beaches, explore the many diverse attractions and outdoor adventures that are unique to the area. A wide variety of hotel accommodations are available ranging from mid-priced rooms to oceanfront and seaside settings. For more information, call the Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau at 805-385-7545 or visit the website at www.visitoxnard.com.