THERE’S SNOW IN TEMECULA!
*1-Catch the Magic Snow flurry at Promenade Temecula. [FRI and SAT nights, Nov. 29 and 30, and Dec. 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, and 28, at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and SUN nights, December 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29, at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m.]
*2-Watch the new Snow Bell Rockin’ Nights show at the California mission-revival style Temecula Civic Center in Old Town Temecula. [Debuts FRI night Nov. 29, 7 p.m., 8 p.m., and 9 p.m.; thenTHU, FRI, and SAT nights, Nov. 30, and December 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 19, 20, 21, 26, 27, and 28, at 7 p.m., 8 p.m., and 9 p.m.]
*3-Play in tons of snow at Winter Wonderland by Pennypickle’s Workshop in Old Town Temecula. [FRI night, Dec. 13, 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.]
HOLIDAY THEATRICAL PRODUCTIONS TO EXPERIENCE TOGETHER
*4-The Nutcracker Ballet with music by Tchaikovsky; Old Town Temecula Community Theater. [FRI Nov. 29, 7 p.m.; SAT Nov. 30, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.; SUN Dec. 1, 1 p.m. and 4 p.m.; WED Dec 18, 7 p.m.; THU Dec. 19, 7 p.m.; FRI Dec. 20, 7 p.m.; and SAT Dec. 21, 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.]
*5-Christmas Carol: the Musical with the heartwarming story of Scrooge’s transformation; Old Town Temecula Community Theater. [THU Dec. 5, 7:30 p.m.; SAT Dec. 7, 2 p.m.; SUN Dec. 8, 6 p.m.; WED/THU/FRI/SAT Dec. 11, 12, 13, and 14, 7:30 p.m.; and SUN Dec. 15 at 2 p.m.]
*6-The Game’s Afoot with a Sherlock Holmes-style whodunit on a glittering December 1936 holiday weekend; Carol’s Restaurant at Baily Winery. [THU/FRI/SAT/SUN Dec. 5, 6, 7, and 8; and THU/FRI/SAT Dec. 12, 13, and 14.]
CLASSIC HOLIDAY SPIRIT
*7-Lorimar Vineyard & Winery’s Tree Lighting Celebration: the holiday season begins at the Tuscan-style wine estate known for its fusion of wine, art, and music. [SUN night Dec. 1, 6 p.m.]
*8-South Coast Winery’s Tree Lighting Celebration: Christmas carolers, a Nutcracker ballet performance, holiday movies, and tractor rides through the vineyards decked out with holiday lights. [SUN night Dec. 1, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.]
*9-Christmas Carolers in vintage attire singing and strolling; South Coast Winery and Vineyard Rose restaurant. [Begins SUN night Dec. 1, 6 to 9 p.m.; then FRI, SAT, and SUN nights, Dec. 6, 7, 8, 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, and 22, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.]
*10-Christmas in the Air: women’s chorus sings baroque to gospel and sacred to secular; Old Town Temecula Community Theater. [SAT night Dec. 7, 7:30 p.m.; and SUN night Dec. 8, 2 p.m.]
*11-Bel Vino Winery Jingle Mingle: holiday cheer including hors d’oeuvres, wine, and live entertainment. [SAT night Dec. 21, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.]
OLD-SCHOOL AND A LITTLE ECLECTIC
*12- Europa Village Winery Vivi Bene: antidote to Black Friday with strolling carolers, old-world bread pudding. [FRI evening Nov. 29, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.]
*13-Holiday Advent Calendars exhibit; Temecula Valley Museum, Old Town Temecula. [TUES-SAT, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; SUN, 1 to 4 p.m.]
NEW-SCHOOL AND ECLECTIC
*14-Monte de Oro Winery Black Friday: hot air balloon glow and entertainment. [FRI evening Nov. 29, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.]
*15-Callaway Vineyard & Winery’s Barrel Tree Lighting: unique stacked-barrel lighting celebration; wine tasting for adults, Santa, and hot cocoa for children. [SUN afternoon and evening, Dec. 1, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.]
*16-Jingle and Mingle after-hours singles mixers; South Coast Winery’s new Wine Press Tasting Room. [THU nights, Dec. 5, 12, 19, and 26, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.]
*17-Santa’s Electric Light Parade: illuminated floats, equestrians, and bands; Old Town Temecula. [FRI night December 6, 7 p.m.]
*18-Doffo Winery Holiday Polenta Party: wear your ugliest holiday sweater. [SAT afternoons December 7 and 14, 1 p.m.; reservations required]
*19-Terra Madre: holiday farm-to-plate celebration with heritage dishes of Spain, France, Italy; Europa Village Winery. [THU evening December 12, 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.]
*20-Christmas with Elvis and Friends: musical tribute to Elvis’ favorite time of year; Europa Village Winery. [THU night Dec. 19, 7 p.m.; SAT night Dec. 21, 7 p.m.; SUN evening Dec. 22, 5:30 p.m.; tickets: Old Town Temecula Community Theater box office]
*21-Christmas Movie in the Vines: Christmas Vacation; Lorimar Vineyards & Winery. [MON Dec. 23, film starts at sunset]
VISITS WITH SANTA CLAUS
*22-At Promenade Temecula. [FRI/SAT Nov. 29 and 30, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; SUN Dec. 1, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; MON/TUE/WED/THU, Dec. 2, 3, 4, and 5, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; FRI Dec. 6, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; then daily Dec. 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, and 23, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.]
*23-On Main Street, Old Town Temecula. [FRI Nov. 29, 6 to 9 p.m.; Sat/Sun, Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, 7, and 8, 1 to 5 p.m.; FRI Dec. 13, 6 to 8:30 p.m.; Sat/Sun Dec. 14, 15, and Sun Dec. 21, 1 to 5 p.m.]
HOLIDAY EQUESTRIAN EXPERIENCES
*24-Horse-drawn trolley rides simulate sleigh rides through vineyards adorned with twinkling lights; Temecula Carriage Company. (Nightly; reservations required.)
*25-Horses dressed as reindeer (including Rudolph): trail rides and arena rides; Saddle Up Ranch. (Daily, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; reservations required.)
NEW TRADITION: THE BUCKET LIST HOLIDAY EXPERIENCE TO SHARE
*26-An ultimately memorable flight together in a hot air balloon over Temecula Valley Wine County; A Grape Escape can accommodate up to 14 people all in the same basket.
HOLIDAY SPA INDULGENCES
*27-GrapeSeed Spa at South Coast Winery: seasonal specials like La Dolce Vita: lush, anti-oxidant rich, aromatic chocolate massage.
*28-Spa Pechanga at Pechanga Resort & Casino: seasonal specials like Liquid Gold Facial, 24-Karat Gold Masque.
NIGHTTIME SITES TO SEE: HOLIDAY LIGHTS AND DÉCOR
*29-Old Town Temecula: along Old Town Front Street from the northern gateway arch to the southern gateway arch, more than 30,000 twinkling lights.
*30-Temecula Valley Wine Country: vineyards and wineries decked out for the holidays; Thornton, Europa Village, Lorimar, Ponte, and South Coast along Rancho California Road; Keyways on the De Portola Wine Trail.
*31-Pechanga Resort & Casino: remarkable holiday magic from the luminous hotel tower to the festive, porte-cochere.
SWIRL AND SAVOR: TEMECULA VALLEY WINE COUNTRY
*32-Wilson Creek Winery: limited Holiday Edition proprietary red blend of estate-grown Merlot, Syrah, and Cabernet Franc; available only in 1.5 liter magnums, autographed by The Wilsons, and ideal for entertaining; only available at the winery; wine tasting upon request.
*33-Ponte Family Estate winery: Temecula Valley estate, 2010 Holiday Reserve Zinfandel.
*34-Holiday Dinner at Meritage at Callaway Vineyard & Winery: festive five-course wine-paired dinner. [THU evening Dec. 19, 6:30 p.m., reservations required.]
SWIRL AND TASTE: OLD TOWN TEMECULA
*35-Fazeli Cellars: Yalda, heralding the shortest day and longest night traditionally celebrated as the Winter Solstice; Yalda is a propriety blend of Temecula Valley estate-grown Grenache, Shiraz, and Movedre.
*36-Lorimar Loft: 2008 Dolce Vita, a limited production, Temecula Valley port-style dessert wine.
SAVOR THE OLD TOWN TASTING TRAIL
*37-Temecula Olive Oil Company: fresh, 100% California, 100% extra-virgin, hand-blended, artisanal Temecula olive oil and balsamic vinegars at the complimentary-daily tasting bar; holiday favorites, fresh basil olive oil, pomegranate vinegar.
*38-Old Town Spice & Tea Merchants: vendor of herbs, spices, salts, blends, and loose teas; also sells hot and iced tea-to-go like Figgie Pudding, Snow Berry, Cinnamon Spice, and Winter Wonderland.
*39-Old Town Sweet Shop: purveyor of fresh chocolates, fudge, nut clusters, chocolate barks, chocolate-covered bacon; hand-scooped ice cream in flavors like peppermint.
*40-Holiday Taste of Old Town Temecula: restaurant samples, wine tasting discounts, goodie bags; tickets will be at Old Town Spice & Tea Merchants and The Bank Mexican Restaurant.[WED afternoon and evening Dec. 11, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.]
CULINARY CLASSES FOR THE HOLIDAYS
*41-Cookies and Hot Cocoa: epicurean cooking demo and wine pairing; Lorimar Vineyards & Winery. [WED afternoon Dec. 4, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.]
*42-Holiday Entertaining: with Café Champagne’s executive chef and sous chef; homemade eggnog, quick and easy appetizers, Christmas cupcakes; Thornton Winery. [SAT afternoon Dec. 7, 2:30 p.m.]
TAKE A SPIN: OUTDOOR ICE SKATING
*43-Temecula on Ice: state-of-the-art ice rink, colorful lights, rental skates that are contemporary and comfortable; coolest place in Old Town Temecula! [Daily and nightly, December 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, and 29.]
HOLIDAY TRADITION: NEW MOVIE PREMIERES
*44-Saving Mr. Banks with Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson tells the story of how Disney’s classic, Mary Poppins, made it to the movie screen; film opens FRI Dec. 13, Promenade Temecula Theater.
*45-In The Hobbit: The Desolution of Smaug,Bilbo Baggins and Gandolf continue their Middle Earth journey and discover the deadly dragon Smaug; film opens FRI Dec. 13, Promenade Temecula Theater.
HOLIDAY DINING IN TEMECULA VALLEY
*46-Christmas Eve dining: Palumbo’s Ristorante, Old Town Temecula; authentic Italian cuisine with modern twists. [TUE Dec. 24, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., reservations suggested.]
*47-Christmas Eve dining: Farm House Kitchen, Temecula Creek Inn; special 3-course Christmas Eve prix-fixe menu. [TUE Dec. 24, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., reservations required.]
*48-Christmas Eve dining: The Gambling Cowboy, Old Town Temecula; contemporary steaks, chops, seafood. [TUE Dec. 24, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., reservations suggested.]
*49-Christmas Eve dining: Baily’s fine dining, Old Town Temecula; seasonal-December menu. [TUE Dec. 24, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., reservations suggested.]
*50-Christmas Eve dining: Great Oak Steakhouse, Pechanga Resort & Casino; AAA Four Diamond dining, amazing wine list. [TUE Dec. 24, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., reservations suggested.]
*51-Christmas Eve dining: Vineyard Rose restaurant, South Coast Winery; special holiday menu. [TUE Dec. 24, 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., reservations required.]
*52-Christmas dining: Café Champagne, Thornton Winery; special holiday menu. [WED Dec. 25, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., reservations required.]
*53-Christmas dining: Farm House Kitchen, Temecula Creek Inn; special 3-course Christmas prix-fixe menu. [WED Dec. 25, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., reservations required.]
*54-Christmas dining: Great Oak Steakhouse, Pechanga Resort & Casino; AAA Four Diamond dining, amazing wine list. [WED Dec. 25, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., reservations suggested.]
*55-Christmas dining: Vineyard Rose restaurant, South Coast Winery; special holiday menu. [WED Dec. 25, 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., reservations required.]
*Information is believed accurate but may be subject to change. The Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau, the region’s official tourism marketing organization and resource for visitors, is online including complete daily Events Calendar at VistTemecula.org.