Activities for the Holiday Break from School

Tis the season for festive hustle and bustle! Holiday time also means you and the kids are in search of fun new ways to enjoy the break from schoolbooks and homework. Once the shopping is done and tasty holiday meals are planned, the whole gang is no doubt ready to get out of the house to embark on a mini-adventure.

You’re in luck. The calendar is absolutely brimming with awesome opportunities to celebrate the season and log in some real quality time as a family. It’s easy as pie for kids of all ages – including Mom and Dad! – to get into the spirit when there are so many cool and interesting happenings around town.

Orange County

  • Menorah lighting at Laguna Niguel City Hall, December 29: Enjoy fun Chanukah treats like latkes, as well as live entertainment, crafts, and activities for the whole family.
  • Newport Dunes Lighting of the Bay, November 24: Join Santa as he flips the switch lighting up more than 50 floating decorations, illuminating the bay.  Don’t forget to bring warm blankets- Dr.Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas will be played after.
  • Festival Ballet Theatre: The Nutcracker, now through December 24: See the magic of the Sugar Plum Fairy live as Festival Ballet Theatre presents The Nutcracker.  Book an additional ticket to the pre-show tea party with Clara, the Nutcracker Prince, and the Mouse King.

San Diego

  • Rady Children’s Ice Rink, now through January 7, 2018: Not only is this a great way to get in the holiday spirit, but all proceeds from the ice rink benefit the Peckham Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Rady Children’s hospital.  Skates and helmet rental is included in the ticket price.
  • San Diego Bay Parade of Lights, December 17, 2017: The 46th annual Parade of Lights is a yearly tradition, looked forward to by Southern Californians of all ages.  Come see the boats decked out to this years theme: Arrrgh! A Pirate’s Christmas.
  • Holiday Bowl Balloon Parade, December 28: Come see festive holiday balloons parade through Downtown San Diego.  The lineup features your favorite characters as well as floats and marching bands.
  • Family Chanukah Party, December 17: This free event has so much to offer with with activities for kids, children’s performances,  playzones, festive games as well as a doughnut decorating station and hot latkes.


  • Wild Lights at the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, select nights through December 24: Now at the Zoo, guests can see Santa’s reindeer in person!  There will also be new additions to the zoo in the form of life-size animal lanterns such as giraffes and cheetahs.
  • Chanukah Festival, December 18: The Chabad jewish Community Center presents their 13th annual Chanukah Festival, with a grand menorah lighting, food, entertainment, and fun for everyone.
  • Festival of Lights, now through January 6: The Mission Inn lights up the night with a winter wonderland of lights, snow, Christmas trees, delicious holiday treats, and more.  This extravaganza is sure to wow visitors of all ages.

The best part of the holidays is getting the chance to spend time with those we love most. So start planning now! ‘Tis also the season for starting some exciting, new traditions and making special memories that will last a lifetime.