by Neena Strichart
Night before last, the cities of Signal Hill and Long Beach teamed up for what has come to be known as the Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony. Taking place at Discovery Well Park in Signal Hill, Long Beach’s Mayor Bob Foster joined Signal Hill’s Mayor Tina Hansen to turn on the Christmas tree-shaped lighting display atop the hill. In spite of a few rain sprinkles, the event went off without a hitch. Thanks goes out to Rossmoor Pastries for all the cookies and goodies at the after-party!
With the tree on top of the hill now lit, I am ready to officially get holiday plans in order. Since Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa are just weeks away, many of us have started the mad rush to find the perfect gifts for those on our lists. For the easiest way to beat the crowds, do your best to shop locally in your own neighborhoods. Local shop owners are traditionally friendlier and more willing to give the ultimate in customer service, and some even offer complimentary gift-wrapping! For those who prefer giving gift certificates or gift cards, stop by your local hairdresser, restaurant or coffee house. They are happy to offer cards and certificates in almost any denomination.
To simplify the shopping thing even further, there are several shopping events planned this season for the Bixby Knolls business corridor. The first event, Winter Wonderland, takes place all day tomorrow. Including over two dozen local businesses, the merchants have banded together to offer a one-day extravaganza chock-full of special offers, refreshments, a visit with Santa Claus, and lots of holiday spirit! For details, see the back page of our paper today.
Next weekend, Dec. 7 and 8, residents can enjoy the Uptown Village Market located at the Expo Arts Center, 4321 Atlantic Ave. in Bixby Knolls. Featuring over 75 vendors along with live music, the event is billed as one that will offer items for sale that are “unique, handmade and creative.” Friday hours are 5pm to 10pm, with Saturday times from 10am to 4pm. For more details, see their ad in today’s issue on page 9 and/or check out uptownvillagemarket.com.
Let’s not forget about the Dec. 7 First Fridays event. According to the BKBIA’s Blair Cohn, the Atlantic Avenue event will allow for shopping, mingling, and some good old-fashioned holiday fun. Be sure to check out next week’s issue for more details on December’s First Fridays.
Remember: Support your local businesses. You’ll save money, time and gas!