Just because Southern Californians don’t have to dig themselves out of snowstorms doesn’t mean that the season goes unnoticed or uncelebrated here. Over in Buena Park, for example, you can enjoy as joyful and lively a Christmas parade and ice show at Knott’s Berry Farm – or Knott’s Merry Farm, as it’s known for the season – as you would anywhere else in the States. The only difference: You can leave the parka and the thermal underwear at home
For the holiday season, Knott’s adds even more entertainment options and stunning decorations to its already brimming array of exciting rides. The Spirit of the Season parade celebrates Christmas with half a dozen spectacular floats, local marching bands, and performers in costumes. Prancing snowmen, candy-crafting elves, jumbo toys, and sparking Christmas trees will delight visitors of all ages.
The beloved Peanuts gang is in on the fun too. Inside the Charles M. Schulz Theatre, park guests can take in the brand-new ice show, “Snoopy’s Cool Christmas.” The world’s most famous beagle will be joined by Knott’s ensemble skaters as they glide through spectacular sets, unveiling numerous surprises along the way.
Snoopy isn’t the only celebrity on hand at Knott’s Merry Farm. Santa has his own hideaway, where children can share memories and wish lists with the jolly fellow.
The most dramatic setting of all might be Knott’s Ghost Town, which has morphed into the Christmas Crafts Village. Far from your average mall, the Crafts Village hosts more than 100 artisans offering their wares. Guests will be welcomed into this lovingly decorated Victorian holiday headquarters by strolling carolers, musical ensembles, and community choirs. The village also hosts live performances of holiday classics: Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol” and O’Henry’s “A Gift of the Magi.”
Elsewhere at Knott’s Merry Farm, the holiday spirit works its magic. For this special time of the year, the popular Timber Mountain Log Ride lights up with music and cheer, featuring a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of Santa’s elves. Park guests can sneak a glimpse into the elves’ preparations for Santa’s red-letter day. The elves will remain until January 1, 2007.
Not content to merely skate for your viewing pleasure, Snoopy lures you to Calico Square. Lucy, Linus, Sally, and Charlie Brown join the lovable beagle to dance and sing among wonderfully lit Christmas trees. They’re also joined by carolers and musicians for a boisterous holiday sing-along. Over in Camp Snoopy, the Peanuts gang pulls overtime daily with their own live musical show, “Winter Wonderland.”
Christmas comes once a year, and fortunately, Knott’s Berry Farm is open all year round. You don’t have to go all the way to the North Pole for a proper holiday celebration; Snoopy, Dickens, Santa, and the gang await you and your entire family right here in Orange County. www.knotts.com
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Written by Gianna Brighton