Friday, December 04, 2009

Things To Do This Holiday Season In Silicon Valley

IMG_4498 So I wrote that post about some of traditions my family shares during the holidays. In the process of this, I started pulling links for, what I think is, some pretty cool stuff to do in the South Bay of Silicon Valley during the holiday season. While we live super close the the Big City, San Francisco, my family tends to stick closer to home for most of our trekking around. Luckily, there's lots to do! I'm sure there's tons more I haven't mentioned, so if you have a favorite by all means please add it in the comments. I'd love to check it out too.

Here's some of the Speak Family favorites:

  • Did you know San Jose has it's own Holiday Parade? This year it's December 6, at 8:30 AM. While the best seats get taken early, you don't have to show up at dark o'clock to get a front row view of this parade. Even here in California it's cold that early, so bring something to sit on (a blanket) and dress warm. This year the Grand Marshall is Disney's Goofy!
  • My mom, Sister-In-Law & I have an annual girls day, when we take our girls to see the Nutcracker. This will be LittleSpeak's first time, she's 3. That should be interesting. If it goes poorly, at least I have a blog post, right? We go to see the local production by Ballet San Jose. I love that we're able to support a ballet company locally. .
  • We attend Christmas in the Park in Down Town San Jose every year. This is the 30th year! Usually we know several groups who decorate trees (including groups we participate in.) It's always fun to go find the trees done by our friends. The kids love the displays. And I love that it's still free, after all these years.
  • We usually try to go ice skating on Down Town Ice while at Christmas in the Park. Where else can you ice skate outside, under the palm trees?
  • There's always a night we drive through Fantasy of Lights in Los Gatos. This is a great way to see lots of Christmas light with minimal effort. Great if you have young kids who won't last long! (My advice, try to go on a week night. Lines on weekends are KRAZZEE long!) We put the kids in warm jammies, pack some hot coco & treats and sing Christmas Carols with the radio station that's sync'd to the displays.)
  • Gilroy Gardens sponsors a month long event called Holiday Lights. Kids love it and they have ice skating & Santa too.
  • Last year we spent one evening checking out the houses with best Christmas light displays nearby us. I found a great website, Lights of the Valley, where people who go all out can post their addresses and pictures. (Users of the site, rate their displays too!) It's not just for the South Bay, but all over Northern California. I had no idea how much some people do (and close to us too!) We will definitely be doing this again this year.