This past Monday, Los Angeles Union Station hosted their 8th annual Tree Lighting ceremony, and we were there to experience the holiday cheer! As we sipped hot cocoa and witnessed the countdown to light up the 30-foot tree at the station’s South Patio, we couldn’t help but think, “Isn’t it nice to see the community come together like this, and all at the county’s biggest transit hub?”
But it also got us wondering: Is it possible for us to replicate a bit of the holiday goodwill for those who weren’t in attendance? Can we corral a list of holiday ideas that are both free and Metro-accessible? You bet your candy cane we can.
Ready to brave a chilly night for some family movie time? We’ve got options for outdoor holiday screenings. Need markets for one-of-a-kind gift ideas? We’ll point you in the right direction. And if all your heart desires is a two-story tree adorned with all the trimmings and backed by seasonal carols… well… we know more than a few places.
The rundown starts below. Now all you need to do is circle a date (or three).
= Metro Accessible
Seasonal Celebrations & Activations
M Santa’s Grand Arrival at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Mall includes a toy giveaway, live musical performances, and a special reading by Santa’s elf. Go Metro: Take the K Line to Martin Luther King Jr Station.
M L.A. County hosts a tree lighting ceremony with special holiday festivities at The Music Center’s Jerry Moss Plaza. Go Metro: Take the B or D Lines to Grand Park / Civic Center station OR take the A or E Lines to Grand Ave Arts / Bunker Hill Station.
M The 9th annual Christmas Tree Lighting in Downtown Long Beach will offer live music, food trucks, fireworks, and mini train rides. Go Metro: Take the A Line to 1st St. Station in Long Beach.
M The Holidayfest on South Lake Ave in Pasadena offers a day of family activities, shopping deals, holiday music, and a Santa’s Village. Go Metro: Take Lines 177/267/662 to Del Mar / Lake.
M The Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade returns for the 61st edition, offering musical entertainment, food trucks, and a pre-parade fireworks display. Go Metro: Take Line 108 to Mindanao / Lincoln.
M The 68th Compton Christmas Parade runs along Compton Blvd from Bullis St to Alameda. Go Metro: Take Lines 60 or 127 to Long Beach / Compton OR Take Lines 125/127/28 to Compton / Alameda.
M A Celebration of Hanukkah at Ivy Station includes a giant menorah lighting, live klezmer music, face painting, games, hot latkes, donuts, chocolate gelt, dreidels, arts and crafts, and a free raffle. Go Metro: Take the E Line to Culver City Station.
December 10: The El Segundo Holiday Parade returns with guests as the Grand Marshals… the 2023 El Segundo Little League World Series Championship Team!
M The Hanukkah Celebration at the Beverly Center will offer an evening of live entertainment, arts and crafts, traditional treats and more. Go Metro: Take Line 14/105/617 to La Cienega / Beverly.
M The 64th annual LA County Holiday Celebration offers an afternoon of L.A.-based artists performing holiday favorites at The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Go Metro: Take the B or D Lines to Grand Park / Civic Center station OR take the A or E Lines to Grand Ave Arts / Bunker Hill Station.
M Ovation Hollywood hosts a Kwanzaa Celebration featuring a performance from the Ujima dance & drum troupe, free cookies, crafting, and more. Go Metro: Take the B Line to Hollywood / Highland.
Holiday Movies Screenings
Pop-Up Markets & Shopping Events
M El Segundo’s outdoor mall The Point celebrates Small Business Saturday with a Sun & Sea Collective Pop Up Market. Go Metro: Take Line 125 to Rosecrans / Sepulveda OR Line 232 to Sepulveda / Rosecrans.
M Conscious Market brings local, curated vendors to Santa Monica’s Third Street Market Promenade every first Saturday of the month, and come December they’ll be hosting a special holiday edition of the pop-up. Go Metro: Take the E Line to Downtown Santa Monica station.
M Jackalope Indie Craft Market brings 175 vendors to Downtown Burbank over a two-day event. Go Metro: Take Line 92 to Magnolia / San Fernando OR Take Lines 154/165/294 to 1st / Magnolia.
M The Queer Mercado brings queer vendors, live music, food, and drag performances to the East L.A. Civic Center every third Saturday. Go Metro: Take the E Line to East LA Civic Ctr Station
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