Holiday Lights are On!
…and calling! Yes, it is the year of the pandemic, but we can still enjoy the season-with some minor adjustments, of course.
Traditions abound during the holidays but many if not most have been compromised or even eliminated this year. For example, both of our Ventura County Harbors had to shut down their annual Boat Parades and festivities due to risk. Social gatherings and travel are discouraged, meaning traditional holiday parties and get-togethers had to be canceled. Seasonal food and toy drives had to adjust while carrying out their acts of altruism, and families and friends shifted to Zoom to keep each other safe. And then, the big one that we are becoming too accustomed to, treating each other like pariahs as we pass them in grocery stores or on sidewalks, has become not only the norm, it’s encouraged.
It seems crucial that we have become willing to innovate to carry out our day-to-day routines and responsibilities rather than just allow them to slip away. Many of us that thought Zoom was only a camera lens have now become proficient in this new means of communication. We “mask up” before we step into public spaces, and we haul around hand sanitizer like we do our car keys.
If ever we needed a situation to provide that opportunity to remind us that we are all connected, this may be that time. The Holiday season may not mean precisely the same thing to all of us, but, particularly as the sun sets, it is a unique time of the year when we have the opportunity to get a visual that we are all having a shared experience. Even with all that has changed this year, the holiday decorations are up the lights are on.
Social distancing is the key to any venture outside our homes, and the best way to ensure we stay safe is to stay in our cars. We can still take that drive to take in the holiday lights. For many, this has been a part of our Holiday tradition even before the pandemic. But just in case it hasn’t been a part of yours, or maybe if you are experiencing a little COVID exhaustion, here are a couple of unique things you might try to pick up your spirits.
Christmas Tree Lane:
Where: Henry T. Oxnard Historic District
Take a drive through the beautifully decorated historic homes on “F” and “G” Streets between 5th and Palm during the holidays. This is a tradition that spans over 26 years and its elaborate holiday decorations make up one of Ventura County’s biggest residential light displays. While walking this display has been the most popular option in the past, driving is encouraged this year. Volunteers will give those who choose to walk guidance to improve flow and reduce contact. This is a free event. If you walk it, please be safe and respectful of others, and if you drive, please be patient and enjoy the experience.
Holidays In Your Car:
Where: Ventura County Fairgrounds
Brought to us by CBF Productions, creators of the very popular Concerts in the Car series, this is an exciting way to make memories that will last a lifetime, and all in the comfort and safety of your vehicle. “With headlights turned off, attendees will drive through an enchanting mile-and-a-half display of over one million dazzling LED lights, accompanied by uplifting holiday music. Awe-inspiring holograms, laser light shows, and impressive multi-colored projections casting festive images of the season onto sets – some standing over 40 feet tall – will all contribute to an unforgettable experience celebrating the most magical time of the year!”
Tickets are priced at $49 for up to 4 passengers and $64 for 5 passengers or more. Each ticket is valid for ONE car, and the number of passengers must not exceed the number of safety belts/seats in the vehicle. Tickets are only available online and in advance and are only valid for the DAY & TIME on top of the ticket and are non-transferable to another date.
So, whether we are in the spirit of the season or needing to find a way to revive it, these two options, one old-one new, can help remind us that we are still all in this together. Happy Holidays!