Lighting of the Bay & More at Newport Dunes
One of SoCal’s most cherished holiday family traditions returns to O.C. Friday, Nov. 25. That’s when Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort hosts its 26th annual Lighting of the Bay, with this year’s festivities including live music and a visit from Santa.
It all kicks off at 3 p.m. with performances by the OC Children’s Song Group and the Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar high school choirs, along with a roaming magician and trio of puppet shows. Then, at 5:30 p.m., Santa will ceremoniously flip a massive switch illuminating dozens of floating “trees” and additional holiday decorations, followed by a 6 p.m. screening of “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas” on the beachfront. Throughout the day, attendees also can enjoy partaking in treats including s’mores, hot cocoa, cider, seafood chowder, hot dogs, chili, corn muffins and even libations at an adult bar.
You’ll want to be sure and visit the Dunes’ Christmas Tree Farm, too. Running from Friday, Nov. 25, through Thursday, Dec. 22 (from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. daily), this is the ideal spot to pick up a Noble, Norman or Grand fir ranging from 3 feet to 10 feet, as well as to take photos with Santa from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on the 25th. In addition, the Dunes will host a special Brunch with Santa at the Back Bay Bistro Sunday, Dec. 3, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Expect Executive Chef Bruno Massuger to whip up a sumptuous feast with all of the trimmings, accompanied by a visit from Ol’ Saint Nick himself. The cost is $45 for adults (with endless Champagne and mimosas) and $16 for children ages 10 and younger. Parking is free for all events and Sunday brunch parking is free with Bistro validation.