Arcata trips the light fantastic this Friday, Dec. 8 when its Holiday Open House and Arts! Arcata festivities coincide from 6 to 8 p.m. on and around the Arcata Plaza (free). Arts! Arcata, of course, is the monthly walking tour that showcases local art and live music, offering snackables and beverages at participating Arcata businesses. This month's art walk is even merrier since it kicks off of Arcata's Season of Wonder and Light. The trees, businesses and prolly McKinley, too, will be decked with lights, bows and holiday decorations. This special night will have complimentary horse-drawn carriage rides, hot chocolate and cider, stilt-walking elves, caroling, a theatrical performance and a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus. Nice!
Just a few miles north and a couple days later, Trinidad's getting lit for Holidays in Trinidad, Sunday, Dec. 10 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (free). Throughout the seaside town, shops and galleries will be open offering music, food and drink and gift-giving ideas, plus wine-tasting at Bergeron and Moonstone Crossing wineries. The Trinidad Elementary School will have a craft fair and book sale, as well as photo ops with Santa. Stop by Town Hall for the Indie Craft Fair to find unique holiday gifts and treats. And nothing could be lovelier than small-town Christmas caroling, happening at 4 p.m. at Trinidad Art Gallery.