Encinitas community events briefs


The San Diego Botanic Garden’s Garden of Lights begins Dec. 5

After the sun goes down in December, the San Diego Botanic Garden in Encinitas is transformed into a dazzling winter wonderland. More than 125,000 sparkling lights illuminate the flora of this fantastic 37-acre urban oasis each evening from 5-9 p.m. on Dec. 5-23 and 26-30 for a magical holiday experience.

Bring the family and experience the magic as 100,000 sparkling lights illuminate several spectacular Garden areas, including the iconic Lawn Garden, Tropical Rainforest, Waterfall Deck, Undersea Succulent Garden, Eucalyptus Grove, Seeds of Wonder (children’s area) and Bamboo Garden, containing the nation’s largest collection of bamboo.

Garden of Lights is the San Diego Botanic Garden’s annual gift to the San Diego Community.Nightly entertainment, including local blues and jazz bands, as well as delicious food from Red Oven Artisanal Pizza and Pasta, and hot coffee and treats from the Jitter Bean, will be available. Plus: Horse-drawn wagon rides (on selected evenings); holiday crafts; spin art; marshmallow roasting; visits with Santa (Dec. 5-23); hot mulled wine (on selected evenings); snow for sledding (on selected evenings); puppet shows (on selected evenings); holiday carolers (on selected evenings); nutcracker display. 

“Encinitas Life” to roll down Coast Highway Dec. 5

Thousands of people will be on floats and in bands with tens of thousands more cheering them on as the 2015 Encinitas Holiday Parade rolls along Coast Highway 101 on Saturday, Dec. 5.

The tree-lighting ceremony at the Lumberyard (near Starbucks) begins at 5 p.m. and the parade at 5:30 p.m. This year’s parade theme is “This IS Encinitas Life!” Parade participants are encouraged to feature something interesting, unique, fun, amazing that shows off what “Encinitas Life” means to them.

Spectators are encouraged to use #EncinitasLife and #EncinitasHolidayParade to show the world what the Encinitas Holiday Parade experience looks like this year.

Free parking shuttles will run from 4-8:30 p.m. from Scripps Hospital Encinitas on Santa Fe Dr. (ADA accessible bus) and from the Magdalena Ecke YMCA parking lot at 200 Saxony Rd. Avoid congestion, come early and stay late, enjoying Coast Highway 101 shops and restaurants. Visit or or call 760-633-2740.     

Encinitas Guitar Orchestra performs Dec. 4

A large group of amateur and semi-professional acoustic guitarists, members of the Encinitas Guitar Orchestra, will perform a variety of music at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 4, at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 925 Balour Dr., Encinitas.

Peter Pupping, who leads and conducts the orchestra of 35 beginning to advanced guitarists, said he chooses a theme for each spring and fall session that ties the music together. This year, the theme is Renaissance, Baroque, and Celtic folk. It includes Celtic folk selections Follow Me Up to Carlow and Jenny Picking Cockles, along with traditional Renaissance guitar pieces by Gaspar Sanz including Villanos and Canarios. All of the pieces have been adapted for guitar orchestra.

“It’s really fascinating and genuinely exciting to hear traditional and other types of music arranged for a guitar orchestra,” Pupping said. “The orchestra presents a sound that is unique to this area, and that people seem to really enjoy.” Pupping noted that this is the largest orchestra comprised of only guitars that he is aware of on the West Coast.

The Encinitas Guitar Orchestra is comprised of local musicians who learn technique and theory under the supervision of Peter Pupping and William Wilson, two accomplished Encinitas-based musicians and teachers. Pupping has organized and conducted a guitar orchestra since 1999.

Pupping has been teaching and performing in Southern California for more than 30 years. His band, the Peter Pupping Band, has released several CDs. The latest, entitled Café Pacifico, combines a variety of music including Nuevo Flamenco, Cuban, West African, Nuevo Tango, Bossa Nova, Samba and Latin Smooth Jazz. Pupping earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music from San Diego State University.

For more information, contact Peter Pupping at Guitar Sounds, (760) 943-0755 or A $12 donation at the door is suggested.

Cardiff 101 MainStreet Kringle Mingle Dec. 6

Cardiff 101 Main Street presents the 8th Annual Cardiff Kringle Mingle from 1-5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 6 at the North Courtyard of Cardiff Town Center in Cardiff-by-the-Sea. Holiday celebration for the entire community features live music, holiday treats, kid’s craft zone, Swedish Glogg Garden, a gorgeous tree lighting and a free professional photo with Santa!

Cardiff Library holiday book and bake sale Dec. 12

The Friends of the Cardiff-by-the-Sea Library invite the public to our annual holiday book and bake sale on Saturday, Dec. 12 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Cardiff-by-the-Sea Library community room at 2081 Newcastle Avenue in Cardiff. All books, including collectibles, as well as media, games, and puzzles, will be available at half price. In addition, there will be wonderful homemade baked goods available for purchase. Books and homemade goodies make great gifts! 

North Coast Symphony Orchesta’s “Holiday Cabaret II” Dec. 12

The North Coast Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Daniel Swem will perform “Holiday Cabaret II” at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12 at the Encinitas Community Center, 1140 Oakcrest Park Dr.

Enjoy holiday musical selections from around the world. Featured pieces include: “Hebrides Overture, Opus 26” by Felix Mendelssohn, “Around the World at Christmas Time” arranged by Bruce Chase, “A Canadian Brass Christmas” arranged by Luther Henderson, “Russian Christmas Music” by Alfred Reed and more.

Tables will be set up for picnicking. Tickets available at the door: $10 general, $8 seniors/students/military, $25/family max. For details, visit The orchestra is funded in part by the City of Encinitas and the Mizel Family Foundation.

Three must-see shows coming to North Coast Rep in December

Solana Beach, North Coast Repertory has three different shows running in December. As David Ellenstein, the Artistic Director states, we have “something for everyone at North Coast Rep: Nostalgia, Comedy and the music of Joni Mitchell.”

Played from beginning to end, in the original keys, Merideth Kaye Clark performs Joni Mitchell’s album BLUE, one of the most iconic albums of all time at North Coast Repertory Theatre one night only on Dec. 7 at 7:30 p.m. Merideth Kaye Clark is an artist, traveler, musician, songwriter, singer, and actress.

More than 32 colorful folks from Bedford Falls will be on stage at North Coast Repertory Theatre this holiday season - from dissatisfied George Bailey to bumbling Angel Clarence, from patient Mary to greedy Henry Potter – and they’ll all be played by one brilliant actor, James Leaming. The intimate Solana Beach theatre is presenting the return engagement of “This Wonderful Life,” a captivating one-man stage adaptation by Steve Murray of the beloved holiday classic It’s a Wonderful Life. Leaming leaves audiences cheering with his amazing display of physical and verbal virtuosity. “This Wonderful Life” performances begin Tuesday, Dec. 8. It will play Tuesday through Sunday at 7 p.m., Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m., through Dec. 27.

Coming to the North Coast Rep, Dec. 13, 14 and 15 at 7:30 p.m., “Sister’s Christmas Catechism: The Mystery of the Magi’s Gold” is making its way to Solana Beach. It’s “CSI: Bethlehem” in this holiday mystery extravaganza, from the author of Late Nite Catechism, as Sister takes on the mystery that has intrigued historians throughout the ages - whatever happened to the Magi’s gold? Retelling the story of the nativity, as only Sister can, this hilarious holiday production is bound to become a yearly classic.

To purchase tickets for any of these shows: Call 858-481-1055 or visit to purchase tickets. North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987 Lomas Santa Fe Drive, Solana Beach, CA 92075