Five fun Christmas events in Orange County

The Concordia Courier

Concordia Irvine

By Mari Malig | 12/6/2022

It’s December, which means it’s Christmas time! Staying on campus or local during Christmas break? There are many great events and attractions in Orange County to get you in the Christmas spirit. Here are the best Christmas events in Orange County.

Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade/Holiday Lights Cruise
The 114th annual Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade is running from Dec. 14 through Dec. 18. This event features a parade of boats decked out in Christmas lights and decor. “I loved the creativity of each boat and how some even launched fireworks,” said Elisa Runtsch, senior. This event has been going on for more than a hundred years and it is very popular. It is free to view the event from any place on the shore! In addition to the parade, there are Holiday Lights Cruises that give you a chance to see homes decked out in Christmas lights, and these rides last about 75 minutes. Senior Claire Gonzalez said, “I enjoy going on the lights cruises because I get to bundle up and watch the lights in a disconnected way, not on social media.” Holiday Lights Cruises run from Dec. 2-13 and Dec. 19-31. Tickets start at $32 and can be purchased on this website:

Winter Fest OC
For the Christmas season, the OC Fair & Event Center is transformed into a winter wonderland with “oversized holiday decor, more than a million lights, and endless opportunities for memory-making.” The Winter Fest OC hosts various holiday activities such as ice skating under the stars, a snowboard simulator, a North Pole Journey, a 150 foot long ice tubing slide and so much more. There is even a holiday market and food and drinks to be purchased. This event is open through Jan. 1 and tickets are $30 for children, $35 for adults (not including tickets for activities). To purchase tickets and learn more about activity pricing, visit 

Huntington Beach Surf City Winter Wonderland 2022
Do you love Christmas time, but would rather spend it at the beach than go to the snow? Well, the Huntington Beach Surf City Winter Wonderland is the perfect event for you! This event is held at the Pier Plaza which is transformed into a winter wonderland with an ice skating rink and other festive activities. The event goes on until Jan. 8, and ice skating tickets can be purchased at the door or online. For more information visit:

The District’s Wonderfest of Lights 2022
The District in Tustin is holding a nightly light show for the first time this year! The show runs until Jan. 1 in the AMC Fountain Courtyard, and the showtimes are every 30 minutes from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. nightly. The show features “an array of colorful lights that dance to your favorite holiday music.” No RSVP is required for this event, and it is free for all to enjoy. Bundle up and bring your favorite hot drinks or dessert to enjoy the show!

Tanaka Farms Hikari - A Festival of Lights
Tanaka Farms is right down the street from Concordia’s campus and they have a lights festival where you go on a wagon ride around the festively lit farm. This festival of lights is called “Hikari” which loosely translates to mean “shine” in Japanese. This event has been a drive-through event in the past, but this year attendants can get off the wagon and wander through the light displays and take photos. Hikari goes on until Dec. 30 and tickets can be purchased on this website:


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