| December-January 2011
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By Heather World
’Tis the season for song, wine, latkes, and Santa, as Noe Valley celebrates “24 HoliDAYS on 24th Street” through December.
This year is the first to feature live reindeer, who will stomp their hooves at the west parklet in front of Just for Fun, 3982 24th St., on Dec. 15, from 4 to 7 p.m.
Santa will land the sleigh (sans reindeer) six times throughout the month, immersing himself in cookies, cocoa, and photo ops with kids and pets. He’ll be in front of Zephyr Real Estate from noon to 2 p.m. on Dec. 3, at Just for Fun from 12: 30 to 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 10, and miraculously at the Animal Company from noon to 5 p.m. on Dec. 10. Then he’ll fly back to Just for Fun from 5 to 7 p.m. on Dec. 15 and from 3 to 5 p.m. on Dec. 18. On Dec. 17, he’ll appear at an art sale benefitting disabled adults at Hill & Co. from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
A free horse-drawn wagon will pick up riders at the Walgreens on Castro Street and take them for a hayride loop down 24th Street to Vicksburg on Saturdays, Dec. 3, 10, and 17, from noon to 3 p.m.
Adults might be more interested in the motorized cable car that will shuttle oenophiles from Chattanooga to Diamond streets on Dec. 7 from 4 to 8 p.m., at the first Noe Valley Holiday Wine Walk. Participating wineries include Terra Sávia Bourassa Vineyards and Wine Thieves. Buy a “tasting wristband” prior to the event at www.sresproductions.com or on-site at the Farmers Market parking lot between Sanchez and Vicksburg. Wine glasses and a map of tasting locations will be available at the lot.
The festivities will take place against a backdrop of music, most of it situated at the two parklets or at the city parking lot on 24th Street between Castro and Noe. The streets will be alive with chorus groups from Adda Clevenger School, roving carolers in Dickens-era dress, and a brass quintet from the Conservatory of Music. Farmers Market favorites the SHE’s, the Buds, and Circus Finelli will also play. As an extra treat, Whole Foods Market will cater a concert by a cappella hipsters the Clef Divers on Dec. 14 at 6:15 p.m.
There will be plenty for little ones to love throughout the month. Small Frys children’s store will host singer-songwriter essence on Dec. 11, performing songs from her CD, A Dog Named Moo. On Dec. 13 and 14, 10 a.m., the store will host readings of holiday books for children, including The Nutcracker.
Terra Mia Decorative Art Studio, a block away on Castro, will have holiday face-painting from 3 to 5 p.m. on Dec. 16.
At the west parklet, face painters will be looking for eager children Dec. 20 from 1 to 3 p.m. and Funnybone the Clown will make holiday balloons and perform magic Dec. 23 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Hanukkah falls late this year, so Rabbi Gedalia Potash and family from Chabad of Noe Valley will lead a menorah lighting followed by latkes and gelt at dusk on Dec. 22 at 24th and Noe streets.
The monthlong HoliDAYS celebration, co-hosted by the Noe Valley Association and the Noe Valley Merchants and Professionals Association, is sponsored by local businesses and groups, with major contributions from Zephyr Real Estate and PG&E.
Throughout the month, stores will feature specials on gifts, food, and drink. For exact dates, times, and locations, check the printed calendar of events available in local shops and restaurants or at www.noevalleyassociation.org.