As the weather turns cold and Auburn begins to deck itself out in greenery and glimmering lights, the city transforms to a wonderland full of holiday cheer. It’s a perfect time for a visit, as there is no shortage of things to do. Auburn’s historical backdrop transports us back to magical time offering Norman Rockwell charm, festivals, parades, and family attractions. Here are some of Auburn’s top seasonal offerings:
The Mountain Mandarin Festival: (November 16 – 18, 2018) Mountain Mandarin Festival marks the official beginning of Mandarin harvest season. The festival takes place the weekend before Thanksgiving every year at the Gold Country Fairgrounds in Auburn. This 3-day celebration draws 30,000+ visitors. Festival attendees can sample fresh mandarins hand-picked by Mountain Mandarin Growers’ Association members, as well as a variety of mandarin-based products including olive oils, marinades, marmalade, syrups, and mandarin blossom honey. Growers will have plenty of 5 and 10 pound bags of mandarins for sale, ready for holiday enjoyment. Most growers can also ship mandarins to your friends and family. Aside from fresh, whole fruit, a variety of food vendors serve up mandarin infused drinks, mandarin milk shakes, chocolate-dipped mandarins, mandarin fudge, mandarin popcorn and lots of other fun creations. More traditional fair food is available too, like hot dogs, corn dogs, hamburgers, barbecued and grilled meats, glazed nuts, kettle corn and frozen treats. Wander the grounds and buildings and purchase quality hand-crafted items just in time for holiday giving and home trimming from more than 150 artisans and vendors. There’s also activities for the kids including clowns and rides.
Ice Skating in Auburn: (November 16, 2018 – January 02, 2018) Ice skating is the perfect way to get in the holiday spirit! This holiday season, the Gold Country Fairgrounds & Event Center is excited to host their 1st Annual Ice Skating Rink in Auburn.The ice rink will be open for the first time on Friday, November 16th and stay open until Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 (some dates excluded).Open 10AM-9:30PM Daily (Based on Availability)
Christmas Tree Lighting in Central Square: (November 24 @ 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm) Kick off the holiday season with us in Central Square in Downtown Auburn as we welcome Santa to town and light the City’s Christmas Tree! Live music – Cookie decorating – Hot Cocoa. Visit with Santa after he lights the tree at 5:30 p.m.
Take Note Troupe Presents “Scrooge The Musical”: (November 30, 2018 – December 08, 2018) Take Note Troupe, Placer County’s award-winning theatre company, is pleased to present Scrooge the Musical, based on the holiday classic by Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol, and with music, lyrics, and book by Leslie Bricusse. TNT’s magical interpretations delight audiences and are community favorites.“This delightful family show will bring light and Christmas Spirit to your holiday season,” said Director LaRee Florence. “Our cast will sing and dance and share the message that it is never too late for a change of heart, that family and love are worth sacrificing for, and that looking outward to bring joy to others brings even greater joy to our own lives.” At each performance, TNT will be collecting non-perishable food items for the Auburn Interfaith Food Closet for local families in need.
DeLights of December: (November 30 – December 2, 2018 @ 4pm – 10pm) A local favorite Christmas celebration featuring over 100,000 dazzling lights at the Gold Country Fairgrounds and Event Center! Enjoy magical light displays, live music, visit Santa Claus, and enjoy delicious food and refreshments. Watch the Festival of Lights Parade as it takes its final route through the fairgrounds on Saturday night.
Festival of Lights Parade: (December 1 @ 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm) Each year families wait with excitement for The Annual Festival of Lights Parade! Every first Saturday in December at 5:30 PM the participants line up on Borland Avenue and prepare for one of the most fantastic light shows in Auburn. The parade starts at the intersection of Harrison and Lincoln Way, proceed down High Street and end up at the Gold Country Fairgrounds. Be sure to bring a blanket and dress in layers, as it can get pretty chilly. Also, prepare to come early as parking and spaces along the parade route are hard to come by later in the afternoon.
Holidays in the Hills: (December 1 – 2, 2018) Share in the joy with the Placer County Wine Trail’s annual drive to support Toys for Tots and enjoy a few tastings along the way. Bring a new, unwrapped toy for discounts on wine, including 10% off your first bottle at each winery. Wine tasting at 17 participating wineries – Food Trucks – Music – Holiday Specials – Toy Drive Benefiting Toys for Tots + More! Start your tour at any participating winery. Wine tasting at all participating wineries is included with purchase of event ticket.
Auburn Symphony – Annual Messiah Sing Along: (December 4, 2018) Join this delightful holiday tradition as the Auburn Symphony performs selections from Handel’s great masterpiece, with nationally recognized guest soloists Liisa Davila, soprano; Lisa Van Der Ploeg, mezzo-soprano; Jaeho Lee, tenor; Roberto Perlas Gomez, baritone; and members of choruses from around the region. Maestro Jaffe will open with John Finnegan’s classic Christmas Sing-along, a medley of the world’s most beloved carols.
Placer Theatre Ballet’s – “Nutcracker”: (December 8 – 16, 2018) Placer Theatre Ballet presents an enchanting holiday treat for all ages in a lively and colorful rendition of this holiday favorite. Join Clara as she steps from a festive party into a magical dream, accompanied by her beloved Nutcracker Prince. Traveling through a Kingdom of Snow, Clara arrives at the Palace of the Sugar Plum Fairy, where a dazzling array of entertainers from around the world give her an evening full of fantasy and fun that she will never forget.
Old Town Auburn Classic Christmas: (December 8 & 15, 2018 @ 5pm – 9pm) Enjoy an old-fashioned holiday and step back in time for Classic Christmas. An annual tradition steeped in 1800s holiday cheer, Old Town Auburn invites you to come out and experience a festive evening of entertainment and family-fun that includes music, attractions, food and drink vendors, merchants and more!
Downtown Auburn Family Christmas Festival: (December 9, 2018 @ 11am – 4pm) Bring the family to Downtown Auburn to enjoy the Holiday Spirit! Experience Christmas stories, crafts and games for kids. More than 85 different artisans and vendors will be selling their wares along with delicious treats. Live holiday music and performances will fill the street and set the tone for a special visit from the beloved characters of Frozen! Have your picture taken with Elsa, Anna, and if the day isn’t too warm, maybe event Olaf! Ride the Polar Express or take a bounce in the bounce house castle. The Grinch once again will be lurking about trying to dash the Christmas Spirit. – The real star of course in Santa Claus! He will spend the afternoon on the porch of the Auburn Promenade for photos and sharing of Christmas wishes.
Visit Santa Claus: (December 9 – 17, 2018) Santa Claus is Coming to Town! Santa will be visiting with the children of Auburn on the porch of the Auburn Promenade in Downtown. Come share your secret Christmas wishes with the jolly man in red and have your picture taken for a nominal fee.
For more information about these events and others, please visit our Event Calendar at: WWW.EXPLOREAUBURNCA.COM