HAPPY JULEFEST: Solvang is one of those places that feels a bit Christmasy all year long (we were recently saying the same thing about Yountville in Napa Valley, so perhaps our state has a surplus of such cities -- lucky state). So when Christmas actually does come along, Solvang acquires extra sparkle courtesy of its tree lighting and its open houses and the other events that make up Julefest. Oh, that's the name of the city's annual holiday run of stuff to do -- makes sense, seeing as how Solvang is billed as the Danish capital of America -- and it all kicked off on Friday, Dec. 2.
THE LIGHTING OF THE TREE: That's when the big fir went glowy, but even if you didn't make it to Solvang for the end-of-the-week switch-flip, bet you'll catch the tree sparkly throughout the month. Other fun goings-on include the Solvang Wine-About on Dec. 17 and 18 (hello, lovely self-explanatory name) and the free concerts on Dec. 10 and 11. In short, when the city jumps into Julefest, they jump in both feet first. Or would "both clogs first" be more appropriate here, seeing as how Solvang famously sells the fab footwear? One last note. This is the 100th anniversary of Julefest, so look for the "100 Trees for 100 Years" display at Solvang shops. There will be a whole lot of festive fir going down around town.