|The Pilgrim, decked out for Christmas at Dana Point.|
Looking for gift ideas? Historian Phil Brigandi will sign copies of his new book, “Orange County Chronicles,” on Sun., Dec. 15, 1-3pm at the Costco in San Juan Capistrano. His book traces 200 years of county history, from the earliest Spanish explorers to the explosive growth of the 1960s. For details, call (949) 240-3558.
Mission San Juan Capistrano will host "Christmas at the Mission" in conjunction with the city's annual Tree Lighting Ceremony and community-wide holiday celebration, on Dec. 7, 5:30-8pm. The Mission will feature a ringing of the historic bells, Dickensian carolers, chamber singers, orchestra musicians, ballet folklorico, mariachis and other local musicians. Ther will also be a “Santa’s Workshop” with cookie and ornament decorating for kids, and food vendors serving tamales, pizza, hot cocoa, sweets and more.
The Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Fullerton will host their annual Winter Holiday Festival, Dec. 22, Noon-4pm. The event includes "historic home and gallery tours, performances, and an arts and crafts fair. The family-friendly event also provides free art workshops for kids, a children’s play area, and a special appearance by Santa Claus."
The Fullerton Arboretum is hosting "Moonlight & Mistletoe: Victorian Christmas Traditions," Dec. 7 & 8, at 6pm. (Please arrive by 5:45.) "Begin the Christmas holiday season as twilight falls on a December evening in the tranquil setting of the Fullerton Arboretum. Watch as costumed Victorians reveal the stories behind the many traditions that have become a part of the season’s celebrations. Enjoy a full evening’s entertainment as you partake of hors d’oeuvres and wine. Join in songs and laughter; listen to Christmas tales and short stories; meet Father Christmas and “the missus” and dance the Grand March. Seating is limited. $25 per person. Reservations Required. No tickets will be available at the door!”
The Nixon Library is doing their elaborate annual exhibit of model trains and international Christmas trees.
Orange's Old Towne Preservation Association is holding a Holiday Home Decoration Contest. Residents of historic Old Towne "are invited to deck the halls and decorate your house in this annual tradition. Awards are given to Best Block, Most Old Fashioned, Best Use of Lights, Most Original and Most Beautiful. Judges will be cruising Old Towne to view the festive homes" beginning at 6pm, Dec. 15.
The Placentia Founders Society will host a docent-led tour of the historic Bradford House on Dec. 8, 2-4pm. A $3 donation per person is requested for non-members on these days. Group tours are $5 per person.
And if all the usual holidays aren't enough for you, celebrate "Ole Hanson Day" with the San Clemente Historical Society on Dec. 8 "with a chicken dinner, 'The Speech' by Ole Hanson, and 'The Ole Hanson Story' which is a motion picture of San Clemente under construction in the 1920’s. We are encouraging 1920’s clothing. A prize will be given for the most authentic outfit." $12 for members and $15 for non-members. Call Mary Ann Comes at 498-0116 for reservations. The event honors the founder/developer of the city and will be held at the San Clemente Community Center, 100 N. Calle Seville.