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Home | Marin and Bay Area Holiday Tree and Menorah Lighting Events 2019

Marin and Bay Area Holiday Tree and Menorah Lighting Events 2019

Macy's 30th Annual Tree Lighting will take place in Union Square Park on Friday, November 29. Photo courtesy Union Square.

All across Marin and the Bay Area, communities celebrate the beginning of the holiday season with a traditional tree lighting ceremony. Here's our list of Christmas tree and Hanukkah menorah lighting ceremonies and celebrations in Marin County, San Francisco, and Sonoma County. We'll be adding more events as the holidays near, so check back often!

Lighting of the Historic Sonoma Plaza

Downtown Sonoma
Saturday, November 16, 5–8 pm

The kick-off to the popular Holidays in Sonoma, join thousands of residents and visitors as we fill the historic Sonoma Plaza with the bright glow of a quarter-million lights. The evening will include music, performances, food trucks and the chance to visit the holiday displays around the 8-acre Sonoma Plaza. Event details

Building Lighting Ceremony and Carnival

Embarcadero Center, San Francisco
Friday, November 22, 4–7 pm

Four iconic buildings lit with 17,000 holiday lights, fireworks bursting in the sky and a magical ice skating show.  The Building Lighting Ceremony at Embarcadero Center is a San Francisco tradition and the official start of the holiday season in the City. The festivities begin at 4:00PM with a family fun Carnival followed by the Building Lighting Ceremony at 6:00PM. Free! Event details

Premiere Night of Tree Lighting at Pier 39

Pier 39, San Francisco
Tuesday, November 26–January 5, 5–10 pm

Pier 39 is once again unwrapping its nightly tree lighting experience on its 60-foot Christmas tree which will come to life every half hour from 5 to 10pm, November 26, 2019 through January 5, 2020. Synchronized to holiday music, the tree transforms into a kaleidoscope of swirling colors, adorned with thousands of specialty lights and ornaments. Event details

San Rafael Parade of Lights & Holiday Fesival

Downtown San Rafael
Friday, November 29, noon–8 pm

Downtown San Rafael will once again commence the holiday season with its Parade of Lights and Holiday Marketplace with arts and crafts that starts the Friday after Thanksgiving. Enjoy kids' activities (noon–4:30 pm & 6–8 pm), Holiday Marketplace (noon–8 pm) and the Parade of Lights (5:30 pm) with Santa and Mrs. Claus's arrival and a tree-lighting immediately after. Location: On Fourth Sreet from B Street to Lootens Place in downtown San Rafael. Note: Snow sledding has been canceled at this year's event. Event details

Ghirardelli Square 55th Annual Tree Lighting

Ghirardelli Square, San Francisco
Friday, November 29, 4–9 pm

Ghirardelli Square’s 54th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place on Friday, November 23 in the West Plaza. Celebrate the season with carolers, Santa Claus, snow, music by Kevin Toqe Music, and more fun festivities in the Square. Event details

Winter Lights Downtown Tree Lighting

Old Courthouse Square, Santa Rosa
Friday, November 29, 4–7 pm

Santa Rosa's annual tree lighting event brings together community to celebrate the holidays with activities for all ages. Watch as Santa arrives on a fire truck, take part in children's activities and games, enjoy delicious local food and drink, and more. Location: 25 Old Courthouse Square, Santa Rosa. Event details

Macy's 30th Annual Great Tree Lighting Ceremony

Union Square, San Francisco
Friday, November 29, 5:30 pm

Macy's gift to the City of San Francisco - Macy's 30th Annual Tree Lighting will take place in Union Square Park between Sutter & Geary streets and Powell & Stockton Streets, right across from the front of Macy's. The beautiful and reusable tree will be decorated with more than 43,000 twinkling energy-efficient LED lights and 700 shining ornaments. Event details

San Anselmo Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony

Imagination Park, San Anselmo
Saturday, November 30, 5 pm

Holiday fun for everyone as the San Anselmo Chamber of Commerce brings the community together to countdown the lighting of the tree in Imagination Park. Hot Cocoa, snacks, art projects, family gathering, fire trucks and Selfies with Santa. Holiday music provide by Drake High School Jazz Band. Location: Imagination Park, 535 San Anselmo Avenue. Event details

20th Annual Jelly Belly Tree Lighting Celebration

Jelly Belly Visitor Center, Fairfield
Saturday, November 30, 5–8 pm

Celebrate the Holiday Season with Jelly Belly, and mark your calendar for this annual event. Santa, puppet shows, and live music are all part of the fun. Watch us light our 32-foot Christmas tree. Plus, catch our character parade! Santa photos available after Tree Lighting Ceremony until 7:45 pm. Location: 1 Jelly Belly Lane, Fairfield. Event details

Civic Center Plaza Tree Lighting

San Francisco Civic Center
Wednesday, December 4, 4–7 pm

This festive lighting of the Civic Center tree features live entertainment, a toy giveaway, take and make crafts and goodies for the kids to enjoy. Event details

Holiday Lights: The Presidio Tree Lighting Ceremony

San Francisco Presidio Main Post
Friday, December 6, 5–7 pm

Light the tree and sing holiday classics along with the Golden Gate Carolers. Food and beverages will be availavble for sale. After the tree lighting, don’t miss the lantern-lit evening forest walk at 6 pm. Looking to do some early holiday shopping? Stop by the Presidio Visitor Center before Holiday Lights for 25% off retail items. Event details

Snoopy's Home Ice Tree Lighting

Santa Rosa
Friday, December 6, 6 & 7:30 pm

Bring the family for Snoopy's Home Ice tree lighting at 6 pm or 7:30 pm. You do need to get tickets ahead of time to attend this event. Tickets will be available at the box office on Wednesday, November 20 at 10 am. Tickets are first come first serve. Limit 4 tickets per adult. Location: 1667 W Steele Lane, Santa Rosa. Event details.

Petaluma Light Up a Life Tree Lighting

Walnut Park, Petaluma
Friday, December 6, 6–7 pm

This evening includes community tree lighting, music, inspiration and remembrance during the holiday season. Thousands of bright lights will shine to symbolize the lives, hopes and dreams of the community. With a $10 donation, a light can be dedicated in memory or honor of a loved one. Hospice will also send an acknowledgment card to your family and friends sharing your gift of light. Contact Hospice of Petaluma at (707) 778-6242 to name a light or for additional event details. Location: 21 Petaluma Boulevard, Petaluma. Event details

Tiburon Holiday Festival

Downtown Tiburon
Saturday, December 7, 1–5 pm

Children, young and old, can engage in a variety of festivities such as train rides, horse drawn carriage rides and gingerbread house decorating. Prepare to be delighted by live music performed by the local school and community choir and bands. Hot mulled wine, beer, cookies, sweet and savory scones as well as chili will be available for purchase all afternoon. The event will culminate with a tree and menorah lighting at 5 pm. Event details

Novato's Annual Community Tree Lighting

Novato City Hall, Sherman Avenue
Saturday, December 7, 4–8 pm

An exciting Novato tradition since 1928, the annual Community Tree Lighting takes place at City Hall and will include food and drink, live entertainment and arts and crafts. Santa and his elves also stop by for photos with the kids! Festivities begin at 4pm. Event details

Lighting of the Snowmen Holiday Festival

CornerStone Sonoma
Saturday, December 7, 4–8 pm

The Annual Lighting of the Snowmen has become a Sonoma Valley holiday tradition! Enjoy live holiday music, lights and decorations, wine and beer tasting, delicious food, kids' crafts, and much more. The lighting will take place around 6 pm. Free admission. Parking $10 (benefits local charities). Location: 23570 Arnold Drive, Sonoma. Event details.

Hands-on Chanukah, Festival of Lights

Charles M. Schulz Museum, Santa Rosa
Sunday, December 8, 10 am–noon

Discover new ways to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Chanukah, the Festival of Lights. Join the Jewish Concierge of Sonoma County, PJ Library, and Charles M. Schulz Museum for dreidel spinning contests, marshmallow-dreidel decorating, candle making, a free gift raffle, and live performance by Diana Shmiana. Receive free admission when you say "Hands-on-Chanukah!" at the front desk. Location: 2301 Hardies Lane, Santa Rosa. Event details.

Mill Valley Winterfest

Depot Plaza, Downtown Mill Valley
Sunday, December 8, noon–5 pm

Mill Valley's annual celebration of the holiday season features a snow sledding hill, the one and only Santa Claus in an antique fire truck, great food and drinks, an array of fun games, great music and entertainment, and a tree lighting. This is one of Mill Valley's hallmark events. Depot Plaza, downtown Mill Valley. Event details

Tree Lighting Festival

Cavallo Point, Sausalito
Sunday, December 8, 5–8 pm

Kick off the holiday season with complimentary fun for families and adults. Enjoy carriage rides, photos with Santa, holiday shopping with local artisans, live caroling from local students, and hot cocoa and sweet treats for the kids. The evening culminates with the ceremonial lighting of a giant holiday tree, to officially mark the beginning of the season's festivities. Free. Event details

Festival of Lights

Osher Marin JCC, San Rafael
Sunday, December 15, 11:30–2 pm

This all-ages fun family festival is free and all are welcome! Enjoy traditional Hanukkah treats like latkes and sufganiyot (donuts), live music, an artisanal marketplace, face painting, holiday songs and stories, arts and crafts, a bounce house, and more. You can also experience the JCC fitness center and pools! Location: 200 North San Pedro Road, San Rafael. Event details

Bill Graham Menorah Lighting

Union Square, San Francisco
Sunday, December 22, 2 pm

The Bill Graham Menorah lights up San Francisco's Union Square, with lighting ceremonies starting December 22 at 4:30 pm. The first ceremony features David and Alex Graham, Perry Farrell, local dignitaries, and long-time Bill Graham colleagues, as well as musical performances by Jerry’s Kosher Deli plus very special guests. Kids craft activities start at 2 pm. Location: 333 Post Street, San Francisco. Event details

Grand Chalk Menorah Lighting

Novato City Hall
Sunday, December 22, 5 pm

Come "Chalk Kindness" at the Grand Chalk Menorah Lighting at Novato City Hall. This free community event also features music and entertainment, a raffle, refreshments like hot latkes and donuts. Location: 901 Sherman Avenue, Novato. Event details

Photo: Ghirardelli Square