Enjoy an old-fashioned holiday celebration with the City of Poway’s annual “Christmas in the Park” from 3:30 to 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Old Poway Park, 13134 Midland Road.
The free event will include live entertainment, crafts, shopping and a visit from Santa.
Parking is limited at Old Poway Park, so free shuttles will be available from two locations in Poway starting at 3 p.m. and running until 9 p.m. Shuttles can be boarded at Poway City Hall, 13325 Civic Center Drive, or the Poway Adult School, 13626 Twin Peaks Road.
At 5:15 p.m. the Christmas Tree Lighting will be held and Santa will arrive on the Poway-Midland Railroad. Following Santa’s arrival, he will be available for pictures and visits from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the park. Pictures are $5 each, provided by Frank Tupas of Francis Ralph Potograpiya.
There will be live entertainment on three stages at the event. In the gazebo, Marilyn McPhie will act as the mistress of ceremonies. At 3:30 p.m., the Tinseltones will perform, followed by the Heritage Dancers giving two square dance performances at 4:30 and 4:55 p.m. At 5:50 p.m., the Tierra Bonita Elementary School Choir will perform, followed by the Full Measure Carolers at 6:20 p.m. The Christmas Belles will perform at 7 p.m. and the Poway High School Die Lieders Choir will close out the evening with a performance at 7:45 p.m.
On the Old St. Nick’s Workshop Stage, the PUSD Peer Ambassadors will act as emcees for the performances. The entertainment will begin with Amazing Dana the Magician at 3:30 p.m. and the San Diego Music Academy at 4:20 p.m. The Miller Music Academy will perform at 5:30 p.m. followed by Midland Elementary School at 6 p.m. The Ornamentals will perform at 6:30 p.m. and Dance to Evolve at 7 p.m. The final acts on this stage will be the Twin Peaks Choir at 7:30 p.m. and Jungle Poppins at 8 p.m.
On the Santa’s Line stage will be Living Way Church at 5:45 p.m. and The Major/Minors at 6:45 p.m.
Visitors can also enjoy roaming entertainment from Jeff Bertino and the Poway Folk Circle, performing holiday music.
A variety of free crafts will be available for children of all ages, including gingerbread house making in Templars Hall, provided by Living Way Church; crafts in the Blacksmith Shop, where visitors can make snowmen, ornaments, candy canes and coloring pages; and crafts on the Boardwalk courtesy of the Poway Arts and Crafts Guild.
There will be free petting zoos offered in the park by Poway 4H and the Poway FFA, who will also be selling birdhouses and goat’s milk soap, respectively. Pony rides will be available for a nominal fee behind the train barn.
The Poway Heritage Museum will be open for viewing with a holiday display and will offer free hot apple cider. The Motor Men and Poway Station will have model trains on display in the Porter House. The Nelson House will have farmhouse tours, Christmas displays and letters to Santa, as well as musical entertainment on the front porch, courtesy of the Poway Folk Circle.
The train will be available for rides for a nominal fee throughout the event and free horse-drawn hay rides will be available from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Train Depot. The box car lot will be showing the film “Miracle on 34th Street.”
Old St. Nick’s Workshop will features shopping, including handmade wooden items, organic and natural home care and local honey, greeting cards and photo prints, electric wax warmers and more. John Wismont of John Wismont Productions will be drawing caricatures and Fairytale Delights will be doing face painting, balloons and glitter tattoos. The Poway Valley Garden Club will be selling succulent plants, and several local organizations will have informational booths.
A plethora of food options will be available for purchase at the event, ranging from sweet to savory. The Hamburger Factory will be selling hot chocolate and corn dogs; the Heritage Dancers will be offering tamales, chili, bottled water, popcorn and cookies; and the Poway Woman’s Club will be selling gingerbread squares and spiced mocha.
A variety of food vendors will also be offering their wares, including La Crêperie, Kettle Tyme, Linda’s Brittle, Arepex, Man Munch Cheezers, Delish Dogs and more.