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Holiday Happenings : A Bay Area Sampler From Front Porch Realty Group

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Many of us look to the final few months of the year with a combination of glee and dread. So much to do and schedule yet there remain some delightful memories that beg to be reunited from holiday seasons past. Maybe your family traditions are nicely locked in place or maybe you like to search around a bit to discover new traditions to build or just some new experiences to grow with. Either way, your friends at Front Porch Realty Group want to help you with some of the legwork in finding or reminding about great holiday happenings throughout the Bay Area this holiday season. And do please let us know if you have a treasured event that think belongs on the list; we’d love to share the wealth.



A Very Trebuchet Christmas features the four member Indie-folk band performing a Christmas concert at the Petaluma Women’s Club, 518 B St. in Petaluma on Dec. 15th at 7 pm. trebuchetmusic.com. Free.

Soul pioneer Bill Medley is joined by Bucky Heard- the other half of The Righteous Brothers playing from their biggest hits on November 18th, 7:30 pm at Luther Burbank Center for the Arts, 50 Mark West Springs Rd., Santa Rosa 707.546.3600. $49-$69.

Cotati Christmas Tree Lighting at La Plaza Park. 6 pm. Dec. 2nd., includes local performers and a visit from Santa. Free.

The Trancendence Theatre Company (known for Broadway Under the Stars) brings an evening of song, dance and humor to Luther Burbank Performing Arts Center, Dec. 2-4th. 50 Mark West Springs Rd., Santa Rosa 707.546.3600. $31.50-$149.

Carolers, lights, and hot chocolate will create a festive experience at the Mission San Francisco Solano on the the Plaza in downtown Sonoma on Dec. 10th 4:30 – 8:30 pm, $2.50 (suggested donation)

Virgin of Guadalupe procession begins at St. Rose Catholic Church, 398 10th St. in Santa Rosa then sings and marches it’s way with over 1000 followers into the very early morning to a celebratory reception and mass 9 miles away in Windsor at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church. www.stroseonline.org. Free.

Holiday lights will adorn boats in harbor at the Petaluma Marina on Dec. 17th, 6 pm. www.visitpetaluma.com Free.

Thousands of Christmas cookies are part of the fun at the Union Hotel in downtown Occidental as visitors arrive to revel in Christmas Caroling and treats. 7 pm Dec. 21, 3731 Main St. Occidental. www.unionhotel.com. Free.

Chanukah celebrations abound around Sonoma County. Dec. 2nd, 4:00 pm at the Montgomery Village Court in Santa Rosa, Dec. 3rd, 5:00 pm at the Oakville Grocery in Healdsburg, and Dec. 5th 5:00 pm on the Plaza in downtown Sonoma. Free.


The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley takes a visit to Jane Austen’s world of Pride and Prejudice Nov. 15-Dec.9th , Marin Theatre Company, 397 Miller Ave., Mill Valley. 415.388.5208. $25-$60.

Bay Area Discovery Museum below the Golden Gate Bridge in Sausalito offers kids a very-hands on, interactive experience. You can easily spend a whole day there exploring the imaginative and iconic exhibits. 557 McReynolds Rd., Sausalito. 415.944.2248. $15.

Kids and adults alike will delight in the old-fashioned Queen Anne style Magic Toy Box tea parties taking place at Falkirk Cultural Center, 1408 Mission Ave. in San Rafael Dec. 15-16th. $24-$28.

The Christmas Jug Band-self described as a tongue-in-cheek seasonal convergence, will be appearing at the Sweetwater Music Hall, 19 Corte Madera Ave., Mill Valley, Dec. 18-19th. 6pm . $19-$24.

The Marin Symphony takes to the stage at the Marin Center Veteran’s Memorial Auditiorium to perform holiday classics on Dec. 11th. 10 Ave. of the Flags. www.marincenter.org. $20-$85 .

Evan Tyrone Martin brings the velvety sounds of Nat King Cole to the Showcase Theatre, 10 Ave. of the Flags, San Rafael, in An Unforgettable Nat King Cole Christmas. www.marncenter.org Nov. 27th-28th. $60.

San Francisco

Perennial theatre favorite- Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol returns to the American Conservatory Theatre to delight the entire family. 415 Geary St., San Francisco. 415.749.2250. Dec. 6th-29th. $16-$72.

The tree lighting at Ghirardelli Square on the Friday after Thanksgiving might be just the thing to spark your Christmas spirit. Top off your visit with a treat from either the renowned Ghirardelli Chocolate Shop or Kara’s Cupcakes. 5:30 pm. Friday, November 23rd. Free.

Grace Cathedral offers an array of holiday events to delight and spiritually inspire anyone entering this 90 year old gothic masterpiece. From a Thanksgiving Dinner ($30), AIDS Memorial Quilt Concert –Dec. 1st. (Free), to performances of Handel’s Messiah ($35-$125), to Sing-along and Christmas Show on Saturdays in December ($5-$25). 1100 California St. San Francisco, www.gracecathedral.org.

Holiday Train exhibit in the Fisher Childrens Center on the 2nd floor of the San Francisco Public Library’s Main Branch. Carefully crafted replicas from your literary favorites like the Hogwart’s Express, or the Polar Express. Mid-December, 100 Larkin St. San Francisco. Free.

East Bay

Holiday Happenings on 4th Street in Berkeley offers a host of musical and family-friendly events from November 16th – December 23rd. www.fourthstreet.com. Free.

The Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir will revive anyone’s spirits with it’s annual holiday concert- With One Voice, on Dec. 5th at Oakland’s Paramount theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oakland, www.oigc.com $14-$44.

The Children’s Fairyland transforms for the holidays complete with storytelling, puppet shows and parades. Dec. 4th-23rd. 699 Bellevue Ave. Oakland. www.fairyland.org $10