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Featured Events:

Pescadero Arts & Fun Festival
Aquaint gathering of artists and artisans, locals and out-of-towners alike, showcasing their creativity and enjoying a down home
Every day (Aug 18-Aug 19) from 10:00am to 6:00pm

(0 A Aug 2018) PescaderoFestival300.jpgPAFF is Going Green!

This year, we've teamed up with the local chapter of Heirs to Our Oceans (H2OO), a youth-driven organization dedicated to changing how we see and use single-use products that negatively impact our oceans and our future.

 

Welcome to the Pescadero Arts and Fun Festival, a quaint gathering of artists and artisans, locals and out-of-towners alike, showcasing their creativity and enjoying a down home, country good time. Founded in 1991 by a group of local artists seeking an outlet for the local community of talent, the Pescadero Arts and Fun Festival was born, and has grown to become the event of the year for locals and longtime visitors.

 

Don't be fooled however by the abundance of artists in our midst (though we do seem to have more than our fair share). PAFF has become far more than just a festival showcasing local talent; thanks in large part to the dedication and generosity of the people behind PAFF, it is also a major player in promoting its local youth and programs. Whether its granting funds to programs within the schools, or scholarships to local seniors, you will find the influence of PAFF in many nooks and corners of the community.

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December

Free First Friday
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Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History
Enjoy our intertidal touch pool, large-screen microscope, and geology exhibit and "dig pit".
Date: Every day from 11:00am to 4:00pm
Ages: All ages Admission Fees: FREE

FREE First Friday 11am-4pm. Enjoy the Museum for FREE with your family on the first Friday of every month. Enjoy our intertidal touch pool, large-screen microscope, and geology exhibit and "dig pit". Santa Cruz Natural History Museum. 1305 East Cliff Dr, Santa Cruz. 420-6115


Location: East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: (831) 420-6115 •website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
Streets of Bethlehem
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First Baptist Church
Experience the streets of Bethlehem's time when Jesus was born
Date: Every day (Dec 6-Dec 9) from 6:00pm to 8:30pm
Admission Fees: Free

Our History

Like the boy shepherd who serves as our logo, Streets of Bethlehem has been in the process of growing up. What began as only a dream in the mind of three individuals came to life in 1992. With the desire to share the gift of the true meaning of Christmas to the community, the idea for a live re-creation of that tiny village on that first Christmas night was born. Streets of Bethlehem was cared for and nourished by the loving hands of dedicated scriptwriters, skilled carpenters, gifted artists and set designers. But what makes Bethlehem special is the way it comes alive when hundreds of volunteers don period costumes and go back in time to "become" those village citizens once again.

 

Streets of Bethlehem in Salinas. Over 200 cast members, numerous musical groups and live animals help recreate and bring this Christmas story to l! ife outside. Go to www.streetsofbethlehem.com for more information.

 

Streets of Bethlehem in Salinas, California is the living enactment of Christmas. The public can walk along with the congregation actors and participate in a meaningful holiday experience.

 

Streets of Bethlehem is certainly one of the best named California Nativity Scenes, and offers some of the greatest audience participation. In many similar events, guests simply drive-through and are entertained. But at Streets of Bethlehem, you ha! ve a chance to walk the street, see the animals, people and costumes up close and gain a personal sense of what it must have been like over 2000 years ago to experience the joy of birth on a special, holy night.

 

The Salinas re-enactment includes livestock such as lambs, sheep and donkeys, an angel hovering above, and a manger scene with a real, live baby child, cradled in love. This outdoor Christmas community experience offers the public a chance to "rediscover the true reason for the Christmas season." Among the cast, kids and adults will meet or watch live actors such as shopkeepers, Mary & Joseph, and more. They may also be invited to pet the animals or walk with Mary & Joseph and the cast of 300. Lovely Christmas music played in the background inspires all who attend. Guests are asked to leave their pets at home. Domestic pets will scare the animals and disrupt the event.

 

With large events (especially about 2000 years ago), parking is almost always a problem, but not at Bethlehem! Free shuttle parking is available at the Quadrangle/Valley Center parking lots (800, 900, 1000 blocks of South Main Street). Free courtesy busses will leave every few minutes.  The streets immediately near the event will be closed so this is the best option for parking.


Location: 1130 San Vincente Ave, Salinas Map
Phone: (831) 422-9872 •website Salinas create a direct event link
Farley's Christmas Wonderland
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Farley's Christmas Wonderland
Visit an elaborate Christmas-themed oasis
Date: Every day (Nov 23-Dec 31) from 5:45pm to 9:00pm
Admission Fees: Donations accepted

Farley's Christmas Wonderland

untitled-design-37Tucked away in Seabright is a one-of-a-kind local neighborhood attraction: Farley's Christmas Wonderland.

 

Pat Farley, a local Seabright resident, creates an elaborate Christmas-themed oasis each year in his front yard and opens it up for the public to walk through and view.

 

If you're looking for a uniquely local Christmas experience to share with family then consider stopping by Farley's Christmas Wonderland.

 

Visit the Farley's Christmas Wonderland website or Facebook page for more information.

 


Location: 108 Seaview Ave., Aptos Map
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Fantasy of Lights
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County of Santa Clara Parks
Magical wonderland of thousands of colorful twinkling lights, exciting, animated displays and favorite holiday music
Date: Every day (Nov 1-Dec 30) from 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Admission Fees: Tickets available NOW!
Special Instructions: OPEN DECEMBER 2-30

Fantasy of Lights is a spectacular 1.5 mile Drive-thru extravaganza of Holiday Lights and Displays for the entire family.

Enjoy a magical evening in the warmth of your vehicle as you drive through large animated
displays while listening to Holiday music on your car radio. See the sights and sounds of
an erupting volcano in the dangerously fun Dinosaur Den, cheer on Santa shooting hoops,
wave at a pen of playful penguins, watch blazing Pirate Cannons and sail through tunnels
of moving lights. Over 50 themed displays and a 90-foot twinkling tree will have you
"oohing and aahing" throughout your adventure.

 

(0 Nov 2017) Christmas_FantasyWalk.jpg Saturday December 2 and Sunday December 3 ONLY!  4:00 pm - 9:00 pm, ADMISSION WITH PRE-PAID TICKETS ONLY! -- ON SALE NOVEMBER 1!


  • $10 - adult (13 & up)
  • $5 - child (4 thru 12)
  • FREE - 3 years old or younger

(0 Nov 2017) Christmas_FantasyDrive.jpgTuesday, December 5 - Saturday, December 30, 2017 - 6:00pm - 10:00pm, (Closed December 25), ADMISSION WITH PRE-PAID TICKETS ONLY! -- ON SALE NOVEMBER 1! --

 


  • $20 - PER VEHICLE (up to 12 people)
  • $50 - oversize vehicles (capacity 13+)

IMPORTANT NOTE!
There is NO event parking at Vasona County Park! Free parking & shuttle available at NETFLIX, 121 Albright Way. We HIGHLY encourage ridesharing with LYFT or UBER.  Please respect our neighbors! Event cancelled ONLY with heavy rains or unsafe conditions.


Location: Vasona Lake County Park, 333 Blossom Hill Dr, Los Gatos Map
Phone: (408) 355-2201 •website Los Gatos create a direct event link
Gingerbread House Workshops
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Marini's
Hurry, spots sell out fast! Tell Marini's you found out about this workshop on SantaCruzParent.com!
Date: Every day (Nov 25-Dec 23) at 2:00pm


Gingerbread House Workshops

For kids of all ages! Beautiful gingerbread houses that you design and create.

 

Classes fill quickly so call to reserve your spot.866-627-4647

 

Tell Marini's you found out about this workshop on SantaCruzParent.com!


Location: 1308 Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: 831.423.3299 •website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
The Ultimate Christmas Show
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Mountain Community Theater
The fruitcakes of Mountain Community Theater invite you to take an irreverent, comedic, yet heartwarming trip through the holida
Date: Every day (Nov 24-Dec 17)
Ages: 12+ Admission Fees: $17-$20
Special Instructions: Fri & Sat 8pm, Sun2pm

The fruitcakes of Mountain Community Theater invite you to take an irreverent, comedic, yet heartwarming trip through the holidays in their upcoming comedy production of Reed Martin and Austin Tichenor's The Ultimate Christmas Show (abridged) playing Nov. 24 through Dec. 17, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 PM, and Sundays at 2 PM at Park Hall in Ben Lomond.

 

Tickets can be purchased for $20 general and $17 for students and seniors at www.mctshows.org, or at www.brownpapertickets.com.

It is festive, funny, physical and fun as some of your favorite MCT comedians poke fun at many holiday traditions, while stepping on more than a few sacred cows. There's lots of singing, a live band, and you can even bring a wrapped holiday gift of $5 value or less and participate in the audience gift exchange! Delicious holidays desserts will be served, as well as inspired madness! This hilarious show promises to boost your spirits and bring gales of holiday belly-aching laughter!

The show stars Santa Cruz area favorite comedians Karin Babbitt, W. Scott Whisler, and Jackson Wolffe, and is directed by MCT veteran Kathie Kratochvil, with musical direction by Mazera Cox, and choreography by Shannon Marie Kerr.

Audience members will enter the world belonging to the "Saint Everybody's Non-Denominational Universalist Church" who are currently hosting their annual "Multicultural Interfaith Holiday Variety Show and Christmas Pageant." Scheduled to perform are groups such as: The Holy Strollers (Holiday toddlers perform the Nativity story); as well as The Christmas Boys' Choir from our Our Lady of Eternal Suspicion Catholic Church.

  • Unfortunately, it is a dark and stormy night in the San Lorenzo Valley and all the roads into the Valley have been closed (sound familiar?). Fortunately, the costume trunks and props from all the scheduled performing acts arrived before the big storm. Unfortunately, the scheduled performers can't get into the Valley. So, the evening's hosts must perform the show themselves! Join us as Mountain Community Theater rekindles the joy, inner-child and familial dysfunction inside us all! This show is recommended for ages 12 and older.

  • Location: Park Hall, 9400 Mill Street, Ben Lomond Map
    Phone: (831) 336-4777 •website Ben Lomond create a direct event link
    Elephant Seal Walks
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    State Park Ano Nuevo
    3 mile hike over sand and sloping terrain to see thousands of elephant seals, including newborn pups, their mothers, and bulls
    Date: Every day (Oct 20-Mar 31)
    Ages: All: (Lots of walking) Admission Fees: Guided $7; Self-guided free
    Special Instructions: Dec 15 - Mar 31

    Explore Año Nuevo with a Docent Naturalist

    gudied walks

    Guided Elephant Seal Walks

    Ticket sales open Friday, October 20

    Cost: $7 per person + $3.99 reservation fee

    www.parks.ca.gov/anonuevo

    Journey to view a large colony of Northern elephant seals, guided by your docent naturalist on this moderate 3-mile, 2.5 hour adventure. In the month of December, male elephant seals, or bulls, arrive along the shore of Año Nuevo State Park to establish hierarchy, while pregnant females come ashore to birth to their pups.

     

    These popular guided walks take place rain or shine, so be prepared for windy, rainy conditions as well as muddy trails. Layered clothing, sturdy shoes, and rain gear is strongly advised. Umbrellas and strollers are not permitted. Pets are not allowed in the park. Parking is $10. For more information, please call (650) 879-2025 or for recorded information (650) 879-0227.

     

    People with accessibility needs may reserve an equal access tour along the boardwalk.

    These tours take place on Fridays, weekends, and select holidays. For reservations and info call ReserveCalifornia at 1-800-444-4445. Events made possible by Coastside State Parks Association and California State Parks.

     

    Self-Guided Seal Walks

    Daily, between 8:30am and 3:30pm (Natural Preserve closes at 5pm)

    Stroll over sand dunes, enjoy beautiful ocean views, and gain a unique opportunity to view a large colony of Northern elephant seals on this 3-mile, 2.5-hour self-guided trail! Visit the female elephant seals as they return to shore to molt, or shed their fur, in this annual excursion.  Additionally, young pups are still ashore from the winter breeding season. Layered clothing, closed-toes shoes, and rain/wind gear are strongly advised. Umbrellas and strollers are not permitted inside the dune area. Pets are not allowed in the park. Walk is free; day-use vehicle fee is $10. Entrance to the reserve for your self-guided walk requires a free permit that can be obtained at the entrance station, or the Visitor Center. Please contact the park at 650-879-2025 for further information.

     

    If you require mobility assistance, you may request a volunteer-led equal access tour. You will board our accessible van and get a ride to our wheelchair-accessible boardwalk. A volunteer(s) will accompany you to the two seal-viewing decks, explain the Northern elephant seal natural history, the history of the park, and answer questions. Reservations are required. Please, allow a 2-week advance notice. The volunteer led tour is free, day-use vehicle fee is $10. Contact the park at 650-879-2033 or email Ano.EqualAccess@parks.ca.gov. Events made possible by Coastside State Parks Association and California State Parks.


    Location: Hwy 1, Pescadero Map
    Phone: (650) 879-2025 •website Pescadero create a direct event link
    Tour the Pacific Migrations Center
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    State Park New Brighton
    Self-guided tour highlights history of Pacific Rim migrations
    Date: Every Su, Tues, Wed, Th, Fri and Sa from 10:00am to 4:00pm
    Ages: 7-12

     Tour the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center at New Brighton State Beach

    Come explore the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center at New Brighton State Beach. This free mini-museum highlights the history of Pacific Rim migrations and how they have influenced the Monterey Bay area. 

    The exhibits explore the contributions of Chinese fishers, who established fishing camps on the Monterey Bay coastline beginning in the 1850s. Fishers dried and shipped most of their catch to markets up and down the coast, as well as across the Pacific. Chinese fish merchants also sold their fresh catch in local towns. China Beach, as New Brighton was known at the time, lasted until the mid-1880s. 

    The center, which is supported by Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays to Sundays. It also includes a ParkStore, offering nature and history-themed merchandise for sale. All proceeds benefit local parks and beaches.

    Self-guided tours of the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center are free. Docent-led tours are available for groups. Contact Jean Bernard at the Visitor Center, 831-464-5620, to schedule. Parking at New Brighton State Beach is $10 and supports the park. New Brighton State Beach is located at 1500 Park Ave. in Capitola


    Location: 1500 Park Ave, Capitola Map
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    One-on-One Tech Tutoring
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    Library Aptos
    A tech savvy librarian will provide instruction in the use of a wide range of technology services
    Date: Every Wed from 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    Admission Fees: Free

    One-on-One Tech Tutoring


    Trying to play with technology and getting frustrated? A tech savvy librarian will provide instruction in the use of a wide range of technology services: How to use free downloadable content available from your library in a number of formats (eBooks, eAudiobooks, and streaming video) Introduction to SCPL databases (i.e. Consumer Reports, Community Information, etc...) Creating an email account Downloading and attaching files Word processing direction and support.

     

    Drop-in weekly appointments, 20 minute slots available. To best support learning, please bring the following items: devices (i.e., laptops, tablets, and/or smartphones), necessary passwords (Google Play, App Store), and library card!

     

    First-come, First-served. FREE


    Location: 7695 Soquel Drive, Aptos Map
    Phone: (831)427-7717 •website Aptos create a direct event link
    December at The Farm
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    The Farm
    Carols, cookies, hot apple cider and moonlit hayrides. 6-9pm. Weather permitting!
    Date: Every day (Nov 21-Dec 23)

    Special Instructions: Spreckles Boulevard West at Highway 68

    Dec 2 & Dec 3 (Fri. & Sat.): Open House/Christmas Sale!  
    Our Last Day of 2016!

    Dec 2 (Fri.): Christmas Night at The Farm
    Carols, cookies, hot apple cider and moonlit hayrides. 6-9pm.  Weather permitting!

    Dec 9 (Fri.): Fresh-baked pies. Pick up from office (green house) 1pm-4pm.  Credit card or check only, please.

    Dec 16 (Fri.): Fresh-baked pies. Pick up from office (green house) 1pm-4pm. 

    Dec 19 (Mon.): Deadline for Christmas Pie orders.

    Dec 22 & 23 (Wed. & Thur.): Christmas Pie pick-up!  Pick up from office (green house) 1pm-4pm. 

     

     


    Location: Boulevard West, Spreckels Map
    Phone: (831) 455-2575 •websitecreate a direct event link
    Community Open House
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    Monterey Bay Aquarium
    Free admission for Monterey, Santa Cruz, and San Benito County residents
    Date: Every day (Dec 2-Dec 10) from 10:00am to 5:00pm


     

    Schooling Pacific sardines in the Open Sea exhibit

    Community Open House

    Enjoy free admission during the Aquarium's annual Community Open House. Become an Aquarium member during this event and receive an extra two months of benefits.

     

    To show appreciation for our local community, we're offering a variety of special promotions throughout 2017 to residents of Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties (valid identification required). Visitors must present a photo ID (student IDs also accepted) or proof of residence, such as a current utility bill, at the Main Entrance.

     

    All offers are valid on site only. Guests of local tri-county residents must pay regular admission prices.

     

    Free admission is good during regular aquarium hours,! from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

     

    Guests from outside Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito County - including relatives or friends of local residents - can accompany local residents, but will be charged regular admission fees.

     

    Community Open House is made possible in part by the support of our Business Partners.

     

    For general aquarium information including daily program schedules, visit www.montereybayaquarium.org or call (831) 648-4800. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is located at 886 Cannery Row in Monterey.


    Location: 886 Cannery Row, Monterey Map
    website Monterey create a direct event link
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