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Local Winter Activities

ROBERT REYES

Staff Writer

As fall comes to an end and the cold weather settles in, the holiday season arrives bringing a sense of enjoyment and ease. Although Santa Barbara isn’t known as a winter getaway, there are many  winter activities that you can do in town. 

One activity that you can do during the winter is ice skating. Santa Barbara isn’t known for snow during the winter, but if you are looking to shred some ice this season, look no further than visiting Ice In Paradise. Ice In Paradise is a local ice skating rink in Goleta, and is a great spot for fun and entertainment. Reese Niemela, an employee at Ice In Paradise, and 11th grader at San Marcos Highschool, was asked about working there. 

Image courtesy of Ice in Paradise

“It’s really fun, I enjoy working there a lot,” Reese exclaimed. “The community there is great. I love all my co-workers and my bosses Brandon and Eric are really nice and flexible about coming into work” 

In the month of December, they host a remarkable ice skating show for the holiday season. I highly recommend that you attend or check out the ice this winter. 

Another winter activity that you can do in Santa Barbara is to go on the Santa Barbara Trolley. Santa Barbara is known for its exquisite Christmas lights and wondrous holiday charm. If you have family coming into town, you should take them on the Santa Barbara Trolley.  On this extravaganza, the tour gives you an amazing display of Christmas lights across the city. You will sing carols and sip hot sider on this ride as well. The tour starts after dark, and is 90 minutes long. This ride is great for cousins and extended family, so they can experience the magic of Santa Barbara over the holidays. I recommend booking a ride as soon as you can to get a sense of the extraordinary experience.

In addition, an activity, highly recommended by fellow students, was to attend the Santa Barbara Parade of Lights. The thirty-fifth annual Santa Barbara Parade of Lights is a boat parade, hosted on December 12 between the Stearn Wharf and the harbor. The annual parade begins between 5 and 6 p.m, but you can go as early as 4 p.m. to watch paddlers and kayakers wearing festive garments circle the Stearns Wharf to spread holiday cheer.  When the parade begins, masses of motorboats, sailers, and stand up paddlers along the coast compete to win prizes. If you are looking to have a great view of the show, there are a great deal of sights and restaurants on the harbor, the beach, and the pier where you can watch and enjoy the show.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia

My final activity to do in Santa Barbara during the winter months is to visit Paseo Nuevo Shops and Restaurants. Paseo Nuevo has activities for children and an extravagant Christmas theme. Between 5:30 and 6:30 p.m, there are weekly live acts and snowfall. They also have Santa sitting in his little cottage. In addition, they have a giant christmas tree that sets the tone for a wonderful holiday season. Lastly, they have shops and stores to buy gifts for the season of giving. 

The holidays are a time of cheer and relief while spending time with family and friends. For many, it is the only time of year where they get to see loved ones and extended family. The holiday season lets us unwind and ease us from school. So, during this holiday season, and over the winter, my family and I will explore these sites. I hope you decide to do so as well, as these are moments that you will cherish for a lifetime.

ROBERT REYES

Staff Writer

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