Enjoy Holiday Magic in Calaveras

Imagine stepping into a Norman Rockwell painting for the holidays. That's the kind of magic we offer up here in Calaveras County when our small-towns are illuminated by fairy lights, parades and Christmas-tree lightings.

Holiday magic in Calaveras means you’ll be singing along with carolers, enjoying street musicians, munching on free goodies from downtown businesses and warming up with wine strolls. To top it all off, we’ve even got chestnuts roasting on an open fire – oh yes we do. And it’s all happening over the next several weekends through to New Year. Read on for details:

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Holiday Magic in Calaveras: Santa at Copperopolis Town Square | Charity Maness

Santa arrives by carriage in Copperopolis Town Square | Charity Maness

Old Fashioned Holiday, Copperopolis Town Square

You can’t get much more old-time-Americana than horse-drawn carriage rides around the square. Copperopolis Town Square’s Old Fashioned Holiday free annual event offers that and much more. For one thing, those free carriage rides feature a special guest you’ll love to ride with… good old Santa Claus himself. He and Mrs. Claus are happy to feature in your photos of you and your family.

Festivals & Events: Copperopolis Town Square | Jack Forkner

Copperopolis Town Square Annual Christmas Tree Lighting | Jack Forkner

Enjoy hot chocolate and cookies, an artisanal holiday food and craft fair and live  music by The Shakers Christmas Band. The Town Square’s boutique shops and restaurants will be offering holiday specials and staying open late on Friday and Saturday. Check out our holiday shopping guide for recommendations.

Early festivities kick off on Friday evening, November 24th with the town square tree lighting, caroling and a visit from Santa from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Round off your evening by enjoying dinner at a local restaurant, and a little holiday shopping.

On Saturday, November 25th, a day of holiday cheer begins at 11:00 am and continues until 7:00 pm. So, if you have little ones that struggle to stay up past dusk, here’s your perfect opportunity to get them started on their holiday celebrations with maximum enjoyment and minimal fuss.

This is an event guaranteed to brighten the hearts of children and adults alike, and a perfect example of holiday magic in Calaveras.

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Angels Camp downtown holiday season | Lisa Boulton

Historic downtown Angels Camp in holiday finery | Lisa Boulton

Angels Camp Lighted Christmas Parade, Open House & Wine Stroll

This free annual event taking place on Saturday November 25th goest from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Caroling in front of the Calaveras Visitors Center at 4:00 pm serenades the lighting of the Christmas tree. Next up is the Parade of Lights beginning at 5:00 pm through historic downtown where locals and visitors alike line this classic Gold Rush street to enjoy the pretty sights.

Calaveras Events Calendar

Angels Camp Christmas Parade | Lisa Boulton

Warm up the cockles of your heart with a taste of Calaveras with the Wine Stroll, featuring wine in 7 downtown businesses with the purchase of a $5 commemorative glass beginning at 4:00 pm.

Enjoy shopping late during the festivities where Main Street merchants serve up treats, discounts on merchandise and wine tasting. Check out the Calaveras Holiday Shopping Guide for suggestions. Santa is available for free photos on the porch at the Visitors Center, immediately following the parade and food trucks will be selling pizza, hot chocolate and other toasty goodies for an evening’s entertainment of carols from Mountain Melody Women’s Choir. It’s the kind of classic, small-town-America-celebration that will warm your heart and jump start your holiday spirit.

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Holiday Magic in Calaveras: Murphys Holiday Open House | Maria Camillo

Murphys Holiday Open House | Maria Camillo

Murphys Holiday Open House

This free annual event, which takes place on Friday, December 1st from 5 – 8 pm, is an old-fashioned celebration featuring a lighted holiday parade, treats, and local wines hosted by Main Street merchants, restaurants, wineries and the Murphys Business Association. Businesses stay open late so you can get a start on your holiday shopping during this magical evening. Check out our 2017 Calaveras Holiday Shopping Guide for tips.

Murphys Holiday Open House | Maria Camillo

Murphys Holiday Open House – Lighted Parade | Maria Camillo

Musicians and carolers fill the streets of charming, historic Murphys with the sounds of the season. Santa arrives with the parade, lights the tree and stays for photos with the kids in the Native Sons Hall and a good time is had by all.

Chestnuts will be roasting on an open fire at the Spice Tin…make sure to stop by and try one. You’ll see why they’ve been a traditionally delicious part of winter festivities for centuries.

Here’s to experiencing the holiday spirit of Murphys for an evening of pure enchantment.

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Ebbetts Pass National Scenic Byway

Bear Valley Mountain | Jason B Smith

holiday shopping night graphicMore Holiday Magic in Calaveras

Check out our calendar of events for full details on all the holiday festivities taking place locally over the next several weeks including (but not limited to):

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 23: Thanksgiving Dinner‘s available throughout the county. Check the Calaveras calendar for details.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 24: (All Day) Bear Valley Winterfest I 7:00 pm White Pines Parade of Lights 

White Pines Lighted Christmas Parade

White Pines Parade of Lights

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 25: Mountain Ranch Christmas in the Country Craft Faire Bake Sale & Luncheon | Dorrington Christmas Tree Lighting & Visit With Santa | Mokelumne Hill’s Christmas Tree Lighting at Renegade Winery with live music and good cheer I New Melones Giving Thanks to Nature Hike I Arnold Holiday Ornament Painting at Timeless Home Gallery l The City of Angels Winter Wonderland

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 26: Enjoy Polar Express Train Rides at Railtown 1897 State Park and Iriving Berlin’s White Christmas performed at the Fallon House Theater in Columbia State Parkjust South of Angels Camp in our neighboring Tuolumne County.

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 1: (details above) Murphys’ Open House Parade and Santa event as well as the coinciding Holiday Festival of Wine in Murphys that continues through Sunday December 3rd. l Murphys Holiday Open House at Jazz Cellars l

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 2:  Ironstone Vineyards’ Breakfast with Santa | Holiday Festival of Wines in Murphys I Mountain Melody Women’s Chorus Holiday Season Performances | 10:00 am Valley Springs Christmas Parade & Tree Lighting Ceremony | Craft Fair and Boutique in Murphys I Polar Express Train Rides at Railtown 1897 State Park just South of Angels Camp in our neighboring Tuolumne County.

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 3: Holiday Festival of Wines in Murphys | Mountain Melody Women’s Chorus Holiday Season Performances | Polar Express Train Rides at Railtown 1897 State Park and Iriving Berlin’s White Christmas performed at the Fallon House Theater in Columbia State Park just South of Angels Camp in our neighboring Tuolumne County. l Valley Springs Christmas Home Tour l

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 8: Upcountry Music for Youth Holiday Concert & Dinner, Mokelumne Hill | Christmas Caroling in the Cave at Moaning Cavern, Vallecito

Caroling in the Cave

Rappelling Santa – Caroling in the Cave at Moaning Cavern | Serena Deininger

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 10: Mokelumne Hill Open House & Santa Visit

FRIDAY: DECEMBER 15-16: The Nutcracker Ballet, Angels Camp

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 29-30: Winter Days in the Park at Calaveras Big Trees State Park

MONDAY, JANUARY 1: New Year’s Day Hike at New Melones Lake

Calaveras Big Trees State Park in Winter | Dave Bunnell

Winter snowshoeing at Calaveras Big Trees State Park | Dave Bunnell

When you’re holiday shopping in Calaveras this year, you can browse through or download our handy 2017 Calaveras Holiday Shopping Guide below:

Happy holidays from Calaveras County to you and your loved ones.

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  1. We are planning to visit Angels camp, Copperopolis and Murphy in late December – 23 -29. What events or activities are available during that time frame in the county?

    • Hi there Ed,

      Thanks so much for reaching out! If you would like to find any event information for any future date you can find it all on our on-line calendar of events here: https://www.gocalaveras.com/calaveras-events-calendar/

      Just click the right arrow next to the month to load the month of your choice, then click whatever day you are interested in visiting and scroll down to see the results. If you see an event that looks interesting to you, you can click that event and it will show you all of the details you might want–including who to contact for further information regarding that event.

      If you have any additional questions, do not hesitate to call 1-800-225-3764.

      Calaveras is such a magical place to be for the holidays, we hope you have a wonderful visit to the area.

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