As fall gives way to winter in California’s Tri-Valley area, it’s a joyous holiday season of giving with many local charitable options to help our community. There are also many joyful celebrations to put everyone into the holiday spirit. Whether you’re in town to visit family, traveling for business, or taking time away from your hectic lives, there is something for everyone visiting Northern California in December.
Season of giving
While you’re here, get into the season’s giving spirit by helping with the Tri-Valley Winter Coat Drive, which takes place until Jan. 31. Donate new and or well-maintained, clean used coats at a variety of locations in Livermore and Pleasanton. Donations benefit CityServe of the Tri-Valley, which helps those in need.
Wine tasting and trolleys
If you’re visiting the Tri-Valley area later in the month, the Livermore Wine Trolley will take you on a magical trip to the Lights of Livermore every night at 5:30 and 7 p.m. from Dec. 8 through Dec. 23. For $72.99 per person, attendees start their experience with an hourlong wine tasting, with food available for an extra cost as well.
After the wine tasting, board a decorated trolley and spend an hour gazing at the most cheerful light displays Livermore has to offer. The experience wouldn’t be complete without more wine available as well. Trolley tickets are on sale on the Livermore Wine Trolley’s website by clicking the “Reserve Now” button.
Visitors looking for an experience centering around the Tri-Valley area’s wine expertise can learn to create their own special mulled wine for the holidays at Livermore’s Garre Vineyard & Winery’s Mulled Wine Workshop. On Dec. 9 from 3 to 5 p.m., attendees can learn to make their own mulled, or spiced, wine, and take-home ingredients to do so.
This event to make a wine with the perfect holiday taste costs $40 per person, and tickets are available on Eventbrite.
Music of the season
Running at a variety of times from Dec. 9 to 17, enjoy the classic holiday ballet of The Nutcracker from Valley Dance Theatre at Livermore’s Bankhead Theater. The timeless music and dance performances developed by Tchaikovsky more than a century ago never fail to entertain everyone of all ages. Tickets are available online for purchase on the Livermore Arts website.
Witness some young holiday cheer with Light the World Music Festival, hosted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Featuring a youth choir of children from elementary through high school from around the Tri-Valley area, this event is literal music to your ears and takes place 7 p.m. Dec. 10 at at the church’s Valley Building near the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton. The chorale production is free.
Visitors to the Tri-Valley in mid-December can say “cheers” to holiday cheer and get in the “spirit” of things with the Spirit and Sweater Stroll in downtown Pleasanton. This Dec. 16 event takes place from 5 to 8 p.m. and is the perfect opportunity to sample local cocktail culture.
Starting at the Museum on Main, guests are encouraged to put on their ugly sweaters, then check in for the event. Once checked in, attendees receive a special event glass, wristband and map enabling them to taste cocktails from more than 20 local businesses and explore the area’s shops and restaurants. Tickets are $45 per person and available on Eventbrite.
Celebrations of the spirit
For those visiting right around Christmas, Nochebuena: A Christmas Spectacular at Livermore’s Bankhead Theater is bringing a colorful and musical performance in traditional Mexican style. Enjoy swirling colors of amazing costumes in dance numbers with music sure to get you in the holiday spirit.
Tickets for the show at 8 p.m. on Dec. 23 are available from the Bankhead’s website for $100 to $130.
For visitors coming during the Hanukkah season the Chabad of the Tri-Valley’s Chanukah Under the Stars takes place 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 24 . The experience is fun for the whole family with live music, doughnuts and latkes, glow in the dark elements and local officials.
The event also will include the lighting of a larger-than-life menorah measuring nine feet tall. This free celebration takes place in front of Livermore’s Bankhead Theater.
Ringing in the new year
If you’re coming to celebrate the new year, the Blackhawk Museum in Danville is bringing back its New Year’s Eve party on Dec. 31 at 9 p.m., with the celebration lasting until 1:30 a.m. the following morning. Featuring former San Francisco ‘49ers cheerleader and DJ Amy Robbins as the headliner, the night is sure to be a hit with RJ “DarkerDaze” Hernandez warming up the crowd.
This party will require formal attire, a dress code and features a balloon drop at midnight. Tickets start at $100 on the Blackhawk website.
For something more relaxing and art-based to celebrate the beginning of 2024, the UNCLE Credit Union Art Gallery in Livermore is hosting 150 Years of A Beautiful California: Landscapes From William Keith to Today for the public to view for free from Thursday to Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. until Jan. 7.
Keep the New Year vibes flowing with more music during the “Happy New Year” with Lauryn Marie, a local musician, at the Firehouse Arts Center in Pleasanton on Jan. 6 at 8 p.m.
Enjoy her sound, which is described as a combination of folk, indie rock, and pop by the official event page, to start off the new year feeling good. Tickets are $15 to $25 and available on the Firehouse website.
After all the festivities, shopping, and family time, come rest up with us at The Rose Hotel. Our staff members are here to ensure your every comfort so you can get that much-needed relaxation. Our intimate setting in downtown Pleasanton fills up fast during December, so make sure to reserve your room to enjoy all the festivities on offer as soon as possible.