Staff Writer | Hailey Gomez
Whether it’s freedom from school as the semester comes to a close, or finally getting to sip that peppermint mocha from Starbucks, there’s no month quite like December.
While this month may offer endless Christmas events to attend, as college students we also have a obligation to stay on a budget. Thankfully, Los Angeles is home to budgeted events that are just as exciting for you as they are for your wallet. Here are 10 festive options to check out during this month:
1. Descanso Gardens – Enchanted Forest of Lights: Head to La Cañada and experience the magic of Christmas lights. While this festival is about $28 per person, the 10 illuminated installations that this garden offers is one of the most stunning experiences in the L.A. area during December.
2. Holiday Ice Rink – Pershing Square: Similar to the iconic Rink in Rockefeller Center from New York, L.A. has it’s very own ice rink right in the middle of downtown. Head to the city to experience a winter wonderland for only $4-$9.
3. Christmas Tree Lane – Altadena: Altadena’s been lighting their Christmas Tree Lane since 1920. It’s just a 20 minute drive from Azusa Pacific, and visitors have the choice to walk or drive up the lane and admire the Christmas lights that have been strung all along the massive cedar trees. Check it out on or after Dec. 9.
4. Winter Fest OC: A new tradition to the Orange County area since 2015, the Winter Fest OC brings the holiday spirits to the OC Fair and Event Center. Open Dec. 21- Jan. 7, the Winter Fest offers guests all kinds of holiday options, including an indoor snow area! It’s $15 per person so keep it on your radar.
5. Rooftop Cinema Club: During December, the Rooftop Cinema Club offers a whole array of festive Christmas movies on various rooftops in the downtown area. It includes classics like “It’s A Wonderful Life” and comedies like “Elf” – tickets are as low as $19 per person.
6. L.A. Zoo Lights: The L.A. Zoo, located down in Griffith Park, offers their traditional lights after the zoo closes each night. Although not all animal will be awake, the zoo will have reindeer for viewers as well as light displays. This attraction is $10 – $19 per person.
7. Downtown Culver City Christmas Tree Lighting: Grab a warm drink and enjoy a festive night in Culver city. This free event occurs on Dec. 7 at 6 p.m. and includes live folk dancing performances and an appearance from the mayor.
8. Artisanal L.A. Holiday City Market in Arcadia: Only a 15 minute drive from campus, Arcadia is hosting its very own holiday market on Dec. 9 from 11a.m. – 6p.m. This free event will host more than 100 indie crafters, artists and cooks.
9. Echo Park Craft Fair in Silver Lake: Head to this two-day art and design event on Dec. 9. Whether it’s a holiday gift you want to pick up or a treat yourself kind of gift, this fair features more than 120 curated arts and food vendors. For the full weekend experience tickets are $16 per person, but if you’re looking to go for just one day a single ticket only cost $10.
10. Griffith Park Festival of Lights Hike: On Sunday, Dec. 10 Griffith Park is bringing back its annual Festival of Lights hike. Not only do you get a great workout, but you also get a spectacular view as you hike Mount Hollywood. Hikers are encouraged to wear black and cover themselves in lights – per the festive theme.
With options that range from completely free to as much as $28, these events can help fill you with the Christmas spirit and keep you to that Christmas budget.