Holiday Traditions in the Golden State

Holiday Traditions in the Golden State

Reading these brought me joy. I hope they help you too.

“I am a junior at Smith College but I was born and raised in Oakland. I can be home for my New Year’s Day birthday because it falls during winter break, so every year my family, some very good friends and I wake up at 5 a.m. on the first day of the new year to drive to the Marin side of the Golden Gate Bridge and walk across as the sun rises! This year I will be turning 21 so it’s gonna be a (chilly) party.” — Adrienne Wander, Northampton, Mass.

“Christmas Day is for family. Even Christmas Eve is for family. But Christmas Eve EVE? Dec. 23? That is the day reserved for time with my best friend from high school and our annual tradition of making dinner together and going to see a light show, usually the Enchanted Forest of Light at Descanso Gardens in La Cañada, which is exceptionally beautiful.

Rain or shine, we go, bringing or dragging all variety of family members along with us, laughing all the way (laughing hardest on the times when it has poured down rain).” — Gabrielle Pascoe, Hollywood

“Every year my husband and I, along with 50 to 100 other folks, take the New Year’s Day ‘polar plunge’ at La Jolla Shores beach, 8 a.m.

It is a bracing metaphor for the start of a new year, and was so especially last New Year’s Day, when we were still all so dumbstruck by Covid, riots, looting, violence and the economic, political and social disintegration we seemed to be experiencing on all sides. At first it’s shockingly painful, but soon you’re numb and begin laughing hysterically.” — Mary Allen, San Diego

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