Winterfest

Yucaipa residents James, Leah and Christopher Lecesse enjoy the large Christmas tree lighting. 

Winterfest 2021 was the hit of the year, according to a record number of attendees on Nov. 27, in Historic Uptown Yucaipa. There were a large selection of vendors lining the streets for those wanting to find that special Christmas gift and supporting small businesses. Vendor Patsy Horsman said she was glad she participated in Small Business Saturday. “This is a great event with a lot of people and a plethora of shopping choices,” she said. A popular food vendor was Wild & Twisted, which offered a variety of food and drink. The line was over 30 minutes long, but according to an attendee, the loaded taters were worth every minute. There was plenty to eat and drink, including warm mulled wine and hot apple cider with a kick. New to town, Kim Glover said she was happy to be in attendance with her family. “This is my first time here,” said Glover, who moved recently from L.A. “Everyone is really nice and I’m excited for the tree lighting.” Chuck Skelton (third cousin to the famous Red Skelton) and son Daniel enjoyed the weather and event. Chuck’s wife Jackie perused the vendors and local shops. “We live up by Date and Fremont and we used to live down by the high school so my son and I went all the way down to our old house and came all the way back here while my wife shopped,” said Chuck. When asked what he thought about the event. Skelton said, “I think it is cool that they have this, just trying to get the neighborhoods together and everybody is just having a good time especially in the times we’re living in.” Next to her parents’ booth Nana’s Candied Pecans, Eden Rose Jackson, 6, came to Winterfest to sell her drawings. The kid zone was a fun destination for the children, including writing letters to Santa. Barrett Arellano, 2, and brother A. J., 4, made Christmas ornaments. Aidan Putnam, 9, climbed the Cliff Climb and slide and said, “I loved it and it was fast.” In addition to the kid’s zone and the vendor booths, there was live music that entertained the crowd. Holiday music was provided by six different local bands. The countdown to the tree lighting was led by Yucaipa Councilman David Avila, who enthusiastically counted down to the lighting and visit by Santa. It even “snowed” on visitors in the Uptown Park. Ice skating The new ice skating rink and the snow was a great attraction, according to many. Annabel Campos, 6, said, “It was good but it was better the second time.” The ice rink had a steady stream of participants and laughter was a common theme at the rink. Where else can you go and ice skate in 70 degree weather? Fortunately, if you didn’t try it at the Winterfest, you still have plenty of opportunities through Jan. 2. The rink features 2,400 square feet of skating space and holiday treats provided by The Gingerbread Shop. Skating times: Noon, 1:30 p.m., 3 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 6 p.m., 7:30 p.m. Pricing: $15 (Children 3-11) $20 (Adults 12 and over). Children under 2 are free with paying adult. Skate rentals are included, and each skate session is one hour. Sessions are non-refundable and all sales are final. To purchase tickets, reserve fire pits and party packages, visit www.yucaipa.org/icerink. Call the box office at 1-909-500-7714. Box office hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 4 to 8 p.m.

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