SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - COVID concerns kicked the 69th and 70th Annual Downtown Santa Barbara Holiday Parade to the curb.
Downtown Santa Barbara's executive director Robin Elander said, "What we were thinking with the holiday parade is that our holiday parade is just really large, it's 100,000 people, and so this year just wasn't the right year to bring that back with COVID but with that said, we are taking the awesome pieces of it and putting on a number of magical events."
Free events such as the Christmas Tree Lighting, sponsored by Consumer Fire Products Inc., will happen near the Arlington Theatre, on Friday, December 3rd from 6-9 and Santa might stop by.
Thursday Art Walks will include performances by the Santa Barbara Revels and the Santa Barbara Trombone Society.
On Fridays, there will be holiday concerts at various locations and on Saturdays, there will be music and dance at Storke Placita on the 700 block of State St.
The Paseo Nuevo already has a decorated tree up and holiday lights.
State Street decorations will go up after Veterans Day.
Some of the usual parade performers are planning pop-up shows in the downtown area including La Boheme.
La Boheme has also accepted an invitation to appear in the 67th annual Milpas Holiday Parade on Saturday, Dec. 11 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
La Boheme director Teresa Kuskey Nowak said," We were asked by the Milpas parade, holiday parade, about 2 months ago, so we are very excited."
And the Parade of Lights will light up the Santa Barbara Harbor again on Sunday, Dec. 12.
Santa Barbara Mayor Cathy Murillo said, "The city is especially proud of our waterfront holiday activities including the Parade of Lights, snow on Stearns Wharf, and fireworks. Come on down."
Neighboring communities are also planning parades including Carpinteria on Dec. 4, and Goleta on December 11.
There will be plenty to do between Thanksgiving and Christmas before people ring in the New Year.