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2016 Solvang Julefest Holiday Happenings

Visit the California community Time Magazine named one of “The Most Christmassy Towns in America”
Solvang, California, USA – Solvang, named one of Time Magazine’s “Most Christmassy Towns in America” will sparkle again during the 2016 annual Julefest (pronounced Yule-Fest) from December 1, 2016 through January 6, 2017. This year’s theme is “Celebrate Together” and will feature Free Visits with Santa in Solvang Park; Shop, Mingle & Jingle Weekends; Holiday Wine & Beer Walk; the traditional Community Tree-lighting Ceremony, Julefest Parade and free Nativity Pageant. Plus, there will be many open houses at local retailers, special concerts and more taking place throughout the season—with activities continually being updated at www.SolvangUSA.com

Throughout Solvang, more than 150 one-of-a-kind boutiques and specialty shops offer everything from clogs to Danish porcelain to handmade lace, leather, iron art, jewelry, clothing, elegant antiques and collectibles, beautiful imported objects, vibrant arts and crafts, and colorful home furnishings. Toy and novelty stores offer playful options for stocking stuffers and kids of all ages. The incredible variety of retail options makes Solvang a perfect destination to shop for gifts and create holiday memories; especially with free parking throughout the village.

According to Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau Executive Director Tracy Farhad, “We have received early notice from the North Pole that Santa Claus will be in Solvang for free visits and photos ops for the whole family! We’re thrilled to welcome Julemanden (The Christmas Man in Danish) to Solvang Park at the corner of Mission Drive & First Street.” First come, first seated with the jolly old elf. Be sure to bring your camera to capture the moments during these days/times:

- Friday, December 2, 2016, from 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Saturday, December 3, 2016, from 12:30-4:30 p.m.
- Sunday, December 4, 2016, from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. 

- Saturday, December 10, 2016, from 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
- Sunday, December 11, 2016, from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.  

2016 Solvang Julefest Schedule of Events:

Friday, December 2, 2016

5:00-6:30 p.m.

Community Tree Lighting Ceremony in Solvang Park (Mission Drive & First Street). Enjoy free live entertainment with area bands, choirs and caroling culminating in ballerinas from Fossemale Dance Studio performing around the “new” 22-foot tall drought-tolerant LED tree.

Friday, December 2 through Sunday, December 4, 2016

Shop, Mingle & Jingle - Sponsored by the Solvang Chamber of Commerce/Third Wednesday, discover dozens of merchant-driven events and happenings. More details at http://solvangthirdwednesday.com/shop-mingle-jingle/

Saturday, December 3, 2016

11:00 a.m.

Julefest Parade with 300+ participants including dancers, musical groups, vintage vehicles, horses, carriages and animals. The parade originates at Solvang Veterans Hall (1745 Mission Drive) travels west on Mission Drive, turns left on Fourth Place, turns left on Copenhagen Drive, and ends on Alisal Road near the village Post Office. Be on the lookout for Santa . . .  as well as the soon-to-be-named 2016 Grand Marshal. Following the parade, enjoy the free performance of

The True Meaning of Christmas—Through the Eyes of a Donkey and Mouse in the Solvang Park Gazebo with area children presenting an original play written and directed by local artist Larry Skahill. 

Friday, December 9 through Sunday, December 11, 2016

Shop, Mingle & Jingle - Sponsored by the Solvang Chamber of Commerce/Third Wednesday, discover dozens of merchant-driven events and happenings. More details at http://solvangthirdwednesday.com/shop-mingle-jingle/

Saturday, December 10 and Sunday, December 11, 2016

11:00 a.m. -4:00 p.m.

Solvang Julefest Wine & Beer Walk Passport features 16 wine and beer tasting rooms throughout the village offering samplings including: Cali Love, Casa Cassara, Copenhagen Sausage & Beer Garden, Dascomb Cellars, Lions Peak Vineyards, Lost Point, Lucas & Lewellen, Olive House, Pace, Presidio Winery, Sante, Sevtap, Sort This Out Cellars, The Good Life, Toccata and Wandering Dog Wine Bar Tickets are $45 per person (21 years or older please) for the 2-day passport including a souvenir wine glass. Purchase online at http://www.solvangusa.com/things-to-do/solvang-julefest/

Saturday, December 10, 2016

5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

Nativity Pageant also known as the “Christmas Story” comes to life in at the outdoor Solvang Festival Theater (420 Second Street).  Enjoy performances by Eduardo Villa, former Metropolitan Opera lead tenor; Julie Meyer, Dove Award-winning Christian recording artist; Maurice Sklar, Concert Master Violinist; a choir, actors in traditional costumes, and live animals on stage. There are two FREE performances with seating on a first come, first entertained basis. (In the unlikely event of rain, performances will be held at an alternate location to be announced).

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

6:00-7:15 p.m. and 7:30-8:45 p.m.  Christmas Lights & Sights Trolley Tour features the best of holiday décor throughout Solvang and Santa Ynez Valley. Seasonal music and hot chocolate will be served on board by Solvang Parks & Recreation Department elves. Only two trips offered, each departing from Solvang Veterans Memorial Hall, 1760 Mission Drive. Tickets are $13 per person in advance (sell out expected). To reserve, call 805-688-7529.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Solvang Third Wednesday Holiday Edition, throughout the village featuring deals at local merchants, restaurants and gourmet food purveyors; the weekly Santa Barbara Certified Farmers Market from 2:00-6:00 p.m.; discounts at local hotels; and the Third Wednesday Wine & Beer Walk. Details at http://solvangthirdwednesday.com/

Friday, January 6, 2017

5:00 -7:00 p.m.

Solvang's Annual Christmas Tree Burn in the fields of Old Mission Santa Inés (1760 Mission Drive); is supervised by the Santa Barbara County Fire Department as one of the largest fire safety demonstrations and community gatherings on California's Central Coast and coordinated by the Solvang Parks & Recreation Department. Live entertainment and refreshments for purchase will be available. Area residents are invited to bring their tree (stands & ornaments must be removed) to the burn pile between January 2-6, 2017 and then join together to see this powerful spectacle ignite the New Year and herald the end of Solvang's Julefest. For more information on this one-of-its-kind event, call 805-688-7529.

Solvang Julefest events are presented by the Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau (SCVB) on behalf of the City of Solvang with sponsorship support from Visit Santa Ynez Valley and other area businesses. All Solvang Julefest events are open to the public with free admission (excluding Julefest Holiday Wine & Beer Walk). For more detailed information about all events, please visit www.SolvangUSA.com or call the Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau at 1-800-468-6765 or 805-688-6144.

Tracy Farhad, Exec. Dir., Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau; tracy.farhad@SolvangUSA.com 805-688-6144

Laura Kath, SCVB Media Relations Director; laura@mariahmarketing.com; 805-344-1717                   Solvang Visitor Center, 1639 Copenhagen Drive; Open Daily 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Follow us on Facebook: /SolvangVisitorCenter Twitter & Instagram: @SolvangUSA


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