Noe Valley Voice December-January 1997-98

Holiday Festivities for Kids of All Ages

By Michele Lynn

'Tis the season to enjoy holiday fun throughout Noe Valley. Lots of treats are in store this month, including several visits from Santa Claus.

At the invitation of the Noe Valley Merchants and Professionals Association, Santa will be at the Bank of America branch, at 24th and Castro streets, on Saturday, Dec. 13, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. He'll be giving away cookies, candy, and hot chocolate, plus gift certificates from Starbucks and Noe Valley Bakery, and toothbrushes from Jimenez-Tong Dental Practice (they'll come in handy after eating all those goodies!). Saint Nick will also be posing with his visitors, who will receive free photos, courtesy of the Merchants.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, stationed half a block down the street in front of Zephyr Real Estate, will be helping Santa hand out goodies. And a walking Christmas tree, sponsored by Elisa's Health Spa, will also fill the air with good cheer.

The jolly man in red will also pay a visit to Rabat, at the corner of 24th and Noe, from Dec. 16 to 18 and 22 to 24. He'll be joined by store owner Patty Woody's "reindog," Mr. Mojo. Resplendent in angel wings and jingle bell antlers, Mr. Mojo (a gentle golden retriever) is happy to pose for photos alongside Santa, so bring your camera. The dashing duo will be handing out candy canes from 6 to 7:30 p.m. every day except Dec. 24, when they will be available from noon to 4 p.m.

If you miss seeing Santa on 24th Street, don't despair -- he will also be at Tom Taylor's home, 3650 21st St., from 7 to 10 p.m., Dec. 15 to 24. He'll be standing out in front of the glittering, 30-foot Christmas tree in Taylor's side yard, with a bag full of candy canes. For the past eight years, Taylor and his elves have magically transformed the tree by surrounding it with giant-size "foil"-wrapped presents. Bring your camera for this one too!

Kids of all ages can enjoy the sounds of music that will abound in Noe Valley this month. On Saturday, Dec. 6, at 11 a.m., Church Street resident and singer Julia "Jewels" Blagden will give a free concert at Little Bean Sprouts, 3961 24th St. Jewels will lead kids 7 and under in a singalong featuring old favorites from her children's CD, the Ruby Red Album.

The music continues on Saturday, Dec. 13, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., when student carolers from St. Philip's School will be serenading shoppers on 24th Street. The same day, from 1 to 2 p.m., Dan the Music Man will be the star of a holiday concert at the Noe Valley Ministry, sponsored by Natural Resources. Says co-owner Samantha Allen, "Dan is a lovable guy who is great with kids. Infants up to 100-year-olds enjoy his music!" Dan plays guitar, sings original songs, and gets kids moving and singing along as well. Tickets ($5/child and $7/adult) may be purchased in advance at Natural Resources, 1307 Castro, or on the day of the event at the Ministry, 1021 Sanchez St.

And on Saturday, Dec. 20, carolers from Washington High School will stroll 24th Street from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

If you've got a hankering to do a little caroling yourself, drop by the Noe Valley Ministry on Friday, Dec. 19, from 6 to 9 p.m. for the annual caroling and tree-trimming celebration. You can help decorate the Ministry's tree, enjoy light refreshments, and sing holiday songs. The event will be held in the upstairs hall of the church, and the singing will begin around 6:45 p.m.

If you would like to introduce your child to the joy of giving to others, you may want to visit Small Frys this month. The children's clothing store, located at 4066 24th St., will be accepting donations for the San Francisco AIDS Foundation's annual holiday party for women and children. Just drop a new, unwrapped toy, game, book, doll, or clothing gift certificate in the store's collection barrel.

Local firehouses will be collecting donations too, for the San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program. Bring unwrapped toys, new or used (as long as they're in working condition or can be repaired), to either of the local fire stations: 3880 26th St. (between Church and Sanchez) or 100 Hoffman Ave., at Alvarado. Call 558-3555 for details.

If you're in the mood for even more holiday fun, check out our calendar listings to find out about other events and activities in the nearby Mission and Glen Park neighborhoods. And have a joyous holiday season! M

If you know about a neighborhood event, program, or activity for children that you would like to see featured in Kids' Picks, send a note to Kids' Picks, Noe Valley Voice, 1021 Sanchez St., San Francisco, CA 94114. Please include a telephone number.