Favorite Local Holiday Traditions

Since we moved to Agoura Hills only 2 and a half years ago, it took us those first two Christmases to establish new traditions, some of which we’re still accumulating and creating fresh even now.  Here are some of the local traditions that we and our friends have found perfect for sharing with our children.

1.  My number one favorite:  driving around neighborhoods to look at holiday light displays.  Nothing is too simple or straightforward for my kids.  Last week they even freaked out as we drove past CVS.  “Look, Mommy, lights!” they cried.

On Christmas Eve I dress the kids in their special holiday pajamas and drive around the neighborhood.  Their little faces look out with wonder and they search for the most decorated house.

Candy Cane Lane is the Valley’s holiday light Disneyland.  We drove through it in the rain last year, so the traffic wasn’t too nutty.  No matter, you’ll want to go slowly anyway to drink in the madcap carpets of lights and props that people put out in that neighborhood.  (Lubao Avenue and Oxnard Street, exit US 101 at Winnetka Ave).

2.  Snow:  Right here in the Conejo Valley, you can experience a lovely nighttime snowfall.  Every Friday and Saturday until Christmas at 6 p.m. and 9 p.m., snow will fall over The Lookout at Four Seasons Westlake Village, right here off of Lindero Canyon Boulevard.  With comfortable outdoor seating overlooking the gorgeous grounds and lit-for-the-night waterfall, The Lookout will have blazing fire pits and hot chocolate, mulled wine, and roasted chestnuts for sale.  They also have s’mores kits available for only $3, that were a huge hit with the kids on opening night.  Our family attended opening night last Friday and we had a great time.  I highly recommend it!

 

3.  Visiting Santa:  you don’t have to go to the mall and stand in line, although if that is your thing, I recommend the Westlake Promenade, which is outside and has a tiny little Santa House for you to visit Santa and take pictures next to its enormous can’t-miss-it Christmas tree.  I prefer smaller, less-populated events that give you an opportunity to visit the big guy.  St. Jude’s parish in Westlake Village has a breakfast with Santa every year – this year the event is Sunday, December 9 from 9am to 12pm and you have to make a reservation by calling  (805) 494-6901.  A $5 donation per photo is requested.  Also, Agoura Hills Recreation Center is holding a visit with Santa this Saturday at the Adobe!

4.  Tree lightings:  Most of them have passed, and I usually miss them all because the last thing I want to do before December 1 is drag my family out to a crowded place and get them in the holiday spirit.  But some organizations save it for later, and for that I am thankful.  TONIGHT at The Oaks Mall (is there another mall around here to refer to when you say “the mall?”) at 6:30, Hospice of the Conejo will hold its annual tree lighting and something incredible called “The Speaking of Names.”  For a $20 per star donation, you can put the name of a loved one on a star to hang on the tree throughout the holiday season.  Lovely to remember them that way.

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  1. […] this night it was snowing outside the Lobby Lounge.  It was manufactured snow, but it was snow nonetheless.  We shall have to return on a warmer evening and test my […]

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