Hashtag Downtown Santa Monica
Holiday Happenings

Every year Santa Monica hosts a series of holiday events and activities that light up Downtown, bringing a festive holiday spirit to this idyllic seaside city.


Thursday, November 3 

ICE at Santa Monica 

Corner of 5th Street and Arizona Avenue 

The Westside’s favorite winter wonderland ICE at Santa Monica returns for its 10th season at the corner of Fifth Street and Arizona Avenue. The 8,000-square-foot outdoor ice-skating rink is open every day through January 16, 2017.

It’s the perfect place to celebrate the holidays, hang out with friends and family, throw a corporate bash or a birthday party in one of the private event cabanas, or enjoy a first date under the sun or stars. Learn how to move on the ice with confidence by signing up for lessons provided by World Champion Figure Skater Randy Gardner and his School of Skating.

All-day admission & skate rental: $15



Monday through Thursday: 2 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Friday: 2 p.m. – Midnight

Saturday: 10 a.m. – Midnight

Sunday: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.


ICE is also introducing ICE Grooves, a music-themed skate party each Thursday from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. continuing through the skating season. The funk freezes over with a fun and eclectic DJ-powered soundscape each week. Rally friends, dress up for the set and get down! 

Current ICE Grooves schedule: 


11/17 • Disco Fever

– Thanksgiving –

12/1 • Motown Funk

12/8 • Tropical House

12/15 • 80’s Vice

12/22 • Latin World

12/29 • 90’s Crush - Pajama Jammy Jam Edition! Bust out the PJs and get down on the ICE. 

1/5 • Beatles vs Bowie

1/12 • Indie Rock Festival


For more information visit www.ICEatSantaMonica.com or call  310.260.1199 



Thursday, November 10

ICE at Santa Monica 10th Anniversary Community Celebration

6 p.m. 

ICE at Santa Monica 

Corner of 5th Street and Arizona Avenue 

Celebrate the 10th Anniversary of everyone’s favorite winter wonderland ICE at Santa Monica. This FREE community event features food from local restaurants, a kids craft station, photobooth, commemorative souvenir, dance music and a live performance by some of California’s most elite skaters. FREE skating for all. 

Please bring a new unwrapped gift or gift card to the celebration and support the Police Activities League Best Gift Ever Toy Drive, which provides presents to children in Santa Monica who are less fortunate than most.  



Friday, November 25

Santa’s Lil’ Savers 

12 p.m. - 2 p.m. 

Downtown Santa Monica 

A handful of lucky Black Friday shoppers in Downtown Santa Monica will be treated to a holiday shopping spree courtesy of Santa Claus and his band of jolly elves. St. Nick will be making the rounds in Downtown Santa Monica all afternoon surprising shoppers by paying for their purchases, up to $100. It’s just a way of saying thanks for doing your holiday shopping in everyone’s favorite district, Downtown Santa Monica. #BuyLocalSM

To learn more about the benefits of shopping local, please visit the Buy Local Santa Monica website: www.buylocalsantamonica.com


Thursday, December 1 

City of Santa Monica Official Holiday Tree Lighting Party 

6:30 p.m. 

1300 block Third Street Promenade 

(Between Santa Monica Blvd and Arizona Ave)

Join Santa, Mrs. Claus and City officials as they light the Official City of Santa Monica Holiday Tree on the world-famous Third Street Promenade. Sing classic Christmas carols with some of Santa Monica’s most talented vocalists while the little ones indulge in a kids’ craft station where they can create their own letters to Santa. The Jolly One will be on hand for photos to help you design that all-important holiday card.


Friday, December 2

Cinema on the Street - Happy Holidays Edition 

8 p.m. 

1300 block Third Street Promenade 

(Between Santa Monica Blvd and Arizona Ave)

Cinema on the Street, Downtown Santa Monica’s year-long outdoor movie series, is back once again for the holidays with a FREE screening of the comedy-horror film Gremlins in which a teen inadvertently breaks three important rules concerning his new Christmas pet and unleashes a horde of malevolently mischievous monsters on a small town on Christmas Eve. Rated PG-13. 

Hot chocolate to be served to first 100 guests.



Sundown December 24, 2016 — Sundown January 1, 2017

Menorah Lightings on the Third Street Promenade 

1300 block Third Street Promenade 

(Between Santa Monica Blvd and Arizona Ave)

Join local synagogues as their members celebrate the Festival of Lights this Hanukkah on the world-famous Third Street Promenade. Lighting the menorah will begin shortly after sundown each evening. Shalom!

For more information on please visit www.downtownsm.com or call 310.393.8355



November 18 – December 24, 2016


Families are invited to enjoy the holiday season, meet Santa Claus and take photos at his festive winter sea-side home. Children who take photos with Santa will receive a free gift. Learn more about the following events at santamonicaplace.com.


Santa Photos (November 18 – December 24)

Santa Breakfast (Saturday, December 3)

Holiday Kids Club (Wednesday, December 7)

Pet Photos with Santa (Wednesdays - December 7, 14 & 21)




Insider Tip

This year Hanukkah begins the evening of Saturday, December 24 and ends in the evening of Sunday, January 1. Christmas falls on a Sunday, and New Year’s Eve is on Saturday night. So party hard in Downtown Santa Monica.