Monday, December 8, 2014

Santa Barbara Street Parade

In the early 1950’s, a tradition began to decorate State Street with 40 foot tall Douglas fir Christmas trees during the holidays. These trees actually lined the center divider lines of what used to be a four lane street. Sponsored then by the Retail Merchants Association, the Chamber of Commerce and the Parks and Recreation Department, the trees were officially dedicated and lit during the Children’s Christmas Parade by the Christmas Fairy. The Children’s Christmas Parade is now known as the Downtown Holiday Parade and is held annually, one week after Thanksgiving.

The parade, now in its 62nd year, has since evolved into Santa Barbara’s only nighttime street parade. After 31 years of Saturday morning debuts, the parade returned to the Friday evening tradition in 1998. This year’s tradition takes place on Friday, December 5th officially welcoming the holiday season downtown!