In LA, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you go. “Take a look at the 5 and 10,” as the old song suggests, and head to one of the awesome tree lighting events scattered across town from Downtown to Hermosa Beach. And since “town” here means “tinseltown,” expect movie-quality festivities including fake snow, fireworks and the tallest LEGO Christmas tree in the world.
photo: Meghan Rose
Rodeo Drive Holiday Lighting Ceremony
There’s no business like snow business, and the red carpet is always rolled out on Rodeo Drive. But on this day, the famous strip will feature every kid’s favorite star: Santa Claus. Get ready for a plethora of lights twinkling on Rodeo’s Drive’s famed palm trees, a snow shower, live music, marching band and light show choreographed to a live DJ. Kids don’t even care about the light flipping at this one; it’s all about playing in the “snow.”
Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, November 22 at 6 p.m. Event details.
photo: The Music Center
The Music Center Plaza Tree Lighting
Ho-ho-help usher in the most merry time of year with the official lighting of Los Angeles County’s Christmas tree on The Music Center Plaza. Sip on free hot chocolate and hum along to holiday favorites performed live by a chamber music ensemble and student choir in this resplendent DTLA setting.
The Music Center, November 30 at 5 p.m. Event details.
Hermosa Beach Tree Lighting Celebration
Surfs up for Santa at Christmas by the sea. The lighting of the Hermosa Beach holiday tree features rocking live bands and carolers, hot chocolate, the South Bay’s Beach Cities Toy Drive and, of course, Santa’s cozy lap to listen to the kiddos’ “wishes, hopes and dreams. “
Pier Plaza in Hermosa Beach, December 3 at 4-9 p.m. Event details.
image: Lucy Pollak Public Relations
Culver City Holiday Tree Lighting Celebration
Are you dreaming of a white (but warm) Christmas? Then take in the 7,500 warm-white LED lights on the gorgeous 22-foot Rocky Mountain pine tree in Downtown Culver City. Savor hot chocolate and cider and nibble on cookies while reveling in Santa sightings and the angelic voices of local choirs. A special gift from energy-efficient elf: this celebration is “green.”
Town Plaza, December 3 at 6 p.m. Event details.
Santa Monica Community Tree Lighting & Santa Parade
Better watch out, better not cry, because Santa is coming to Santa Monica, parading down the Promenade on the 1300 Block, just north of Santa Monica Boulevard. And no, he’s not coming to shop, but to spread the spirit of the season.
Third Street Promenade, December 3 at 5:30-8:30 p.m. Event details.
photo: Peter A. via yelp
Christmas Tree Lane Lighting
Make merry and meet magic in Altadena. Revelers have been flocking to the oldest large-scale Christmas lighting spectacle in the United States for almost a century to ooh and aah over the lovely light display on the tall deodar trees of Rosa Avenue, aka Christmas Tree Lane. The wee ones can meet Santa, and everyone can enjoy performances, choirs, marching bands and more at the Ceremony & Winter Arts & Crafts Festival. If you miss the lighting event, fret not; the lights are on and can be admired every night until New Year’s.
Altadena Public Library, December 12, Winter Arts & Craft Festival at 2 p.m.; Tree Lighting at 6 p.m. Event details.
Pasadena Christmas Tree Lighting
For a more folksy affair, join the mayor and fellow merrymakers for this jubilation celebration at Pasadena City Hall. There will be hot chocolate, cookies, arts and crafts for the kids, the tree lighting at 6 p.m., a diorama scene with a sleigh where parents can take pics of their little ones, and the giant elf himself, after he arrives via firetruck. Woot! We think it’s the best free family tree lighting event in the San Gabriel Valley. Bring an unwrapped toy for the Spark of Love Toy Drive.
Pasadena City Hall, December 4 at 5-7 p.m. Event details.
photo: Americana at Brand
Americana Christmas Tree Lighting
Let it snow in Glendale and fête with flying reindeer, magical elves and Mr. Kris Kringle himself. This outdoor mall goes all out with lively performance featuring fan favorites from the hit show, So You Think You Can Dance, who will debut an original dance spectacular inspired by ‘Clara’ from The Nutcracker. Then faux snow falls as Santa arrives, the beautiful Christmas tree is lit, and the evening ends with a grand fireworks finale!
Americana, November 19 at 7:30 p.m., pre-show begins at 7 p.m. Event details.
photo: LEGOLAND California Resort
LEGOLAND Christmas Tree Lighting
A mind-boggling 245,000 forest green DUPLO bricks go into the creation of the world’s tallest LEGO Christmas tree, towering at 30 feet above folks filled with the holiday spirit. Fireworks, Saint Nick and more await the whole family. The Holiday Snow Days follow November 21-January 3 with real snowballs, food trucks, nightly fireworks, shows, music and more festivities. It’s totally worth the drive for LEGO obsessed kids.
LEGOLAND, November 30 at 5:30 p.m. Event details.
Disneyland‘s Lighting of the Tree
The splendid 60-foot-tall Christmas tree on Buena Vista Street in the plaza outside Elias & Co. won’t just be lit once, or twice…but every day at 5 p.m. November 13-December 24 with the festive jingles of the Buena Vista Street Community Bell Ringers. The Merriest Place On Earth itself becomes even merrier for the holiday season with A Christmas Fantasy Parade, “It’s a Small World” and other rides decked into glittering spectacles, Disneyland Forever Fireworks and a chance to meet Santa Claus at Pooh’s Thotful Spot in Critter Country. December 25-30 the tree will still be lit up minus the ceremony and bell ringing.
Disney California Adventure Park, Buena Vista Street, November 13-December 24 at 5 p.m. Event details.
What tree lighting ceremony do you plan to attend this year? Let us know in the comment section below.