La Mesa will have smaller Holiday in the Village in 2020
In a year filled with the cancelation of so many events, the La Mesa Village Association is going forward with its annual Holiday in the Village.
Social distancing protocols will be in place to discourage the spread of COVID-19. While there will be no place to visit with Santa Claus, and no live bands playing or holiday dancers, the downtown village area will be lit up as in years past with festive decorations and alive with sound from strolling carolers and piped-in holiday music.
The free event is scheduled for 10 a.m. until 9 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 5, along La Mesa Boulevard between Palm Avenue and Fourth Street.
“We are taking every safety precaution so that the community and families can come enjoy the holidays,” said La Mesa Village Association spokeswoman Elizabeth Ranta. “This is a tradition in La Mesa, and the La Mesa Village Association and the merchants, they love it. It’s a blessing we can do this. We are being careful and cautious and following every guideline from the county and city. There will be a special entrance and separate exit to get in and out, masks required.”
The event will include a modified craft market format with handmade goods from local artists. The art fair has been approved by officials from La Mesa and San Diego County, with strict health guidelines that must be adhered to. The event will also include a food court and a holiday-themed photo station.
Event promoters said temperature checks will be required upon entry, and face coverings and social distancing protocols will be required throughout. They note that directional arrows will guide the flow to aid in spacing among groups. Past events have brought up to 20,000 people, but this year’s is expected to draw a smaller crowd.
La Mesa Lumber employees will park one of the company’s trucks at end of Fourth Street, where the decorated vehicle will offer a winter scene where people can take holiday photos, Ranta said.
“We’re still providing that festive holiday celebration for our community, something to look forward to and a great way to to kick off the holiday season this year,” she said. “I think we’re all trying to have some sort of normal in our holiday routines.”
The Holiday in the Village event in 2016, the first managed by a then-new La Mesa Village Association, had previously been known as “Christmas In The Village.”
The La Mesa City Council last year agreed to put $30,000 toward the event. Since 2017, the City Council has waived cost recovery fees for Holiday in the Village as it says the event provides a community benefit for families and youth — as long as the event remains alcohol free. City Manager Greg Humora said that the city has nothing of its own planned for the holiday season.
For more information, visit www.lamesavillageassociation.org
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