The city of Scottsdale announced the return of its popular holiday extravaganza, Scottsdazzle, with new events and added protocols to ensure a safe and welcoming environment in which guests can ring in the holidays in any way they feel comfortable. Celebrating its fifth year, the city’s signature holiday celebration features all-new activities in addition to favorite events of the past reimagined in a way that adheres to current CDC and state guidelines.
“We’ve spent months modifying Scottsdazzle’s signature events and putting together a new line-up of activities that allows our residents and visitors to safely revel in the magic of the holidays throughout Old Town,” said Karen Churchard, Director of Tourism and Events for the city of Scottsdale. “Each event is designed to get guests into the spirit of the season in a purposeful way. We’re excited to be celebrating our fifth anniversary of Scottsdazzle with a redesigned series of events that also allows us to partner with the many local businesses here in Old Town.”
Scottsdazzle begins on Thursday, November 6 with Canal Convergence and runs through December 21 with celebrations surrounding the winter solstice. In addition to dedicated events, Old Town will receive its annual blanket of holiday transformation of enhanced décor and dazzling lights sprinkled throughout the streets that remain through January 3, 2021. Local retailers and restaurants are also getting in on the festive spirit by offering guests incentives to shop, sip, and nibble throughout the season. Current event line-up includes the following:
Thursday, November 6-Sunday, November 15
The city of Scottsdale and Scottsdale Public Art invites locals and visitors to get in the holiday spirit beginning as early as Thursday, November 6 with the unveiling of Canal Convergence, a project dedicated to amazing art installations located throughout Old Town. The featured piece that will stay in place throughout Scottsdazzle is Information Flow by Justin Winters and Walter Productions that will stretch 200 feet across the Arizona Canal and have six interactive pressure pads along the canal banks. When a pad activates, it sends a pulse of light, like a byte of information, from the pad to a connected floating receiver for processing. From there, the light travels on to the artwork’s central information tower, where it is processed and redistributed through a light sequence performance. For more: www.canalconvergence.com
Old Town Scottsdale Farmers Market
Saturdays, from 8:00 a.m.-noon
From November 21 through December 19, the intersection of Brown Avenue and 1st Street becomes home to the weekly festive farmers market featuring Scottsdazzle activities such as Letters to Santa and live holiday music to enjoy while shopping for artisan products, handmade gifts and crafts, fresh produce, and more.
Letters to Santa
Saturdays, November 21 and 28, December 5, and online
Even Santa is following contactless guidelines and getting techy by taking to the internet to receive children’s letters this holiday season! Parents and children can fill out and submit their letters to Santa via www.Scottsdazzle.com anytime or they can print their letter at home and “mail it” (no stamp required!) at the Letters to Santa station at the Old Town Farmers Market on November 21 and 28, and December 5. Children will receive a letter back from Santa through the good old-fashioned mail.
Holiday Tree Lighting and Sing-Along
Saturday, November 28 – 7:00 p.m.
Typically considered the official kick-off event of Scottsdazzle, this year’s tree-lighting and sing-along is presented in a virtual format that allows for the entire community to unite in a safe way while still experiencing the merriment and nostalgia of a traditional group sing-along.
Small Business Saturday
Saturday, November 28 All day
On this day, residents and visitors are encouraged to Shop Scottsdale by visiting locally owned shops, retailers, and restaurants in Old Town to help support independent businesses and boost the economy while also enjoying specials and sales just in time for the holidays.
Holiday Movie Nights
Friday December 4; Saturday, December 5; and Sunday, December 6
For three nights in a row, movie buffs can enjoy a favorite holiday hit —The Santa Clause (Friday), Elf (Saturday), and Home Alone (Sunday). Held on the East Lawn at Scottsdale Civic Center, this new micro event allows groups of up to four their own designated space to enjoy festive flicks on a giant inflatable screen. By reservation for a nominal fee; groups more than four must reserve additional spaces. Attendees are welcome to bring a blanket to snuggle up during the movie as well as their own food and beverage to enjoy in their space. Gate opens at 5:00 p.m. for “socially distanced hour” during which guests can take in some holiday tunes and get settled into their spots. Movies begin at 6:00 p.m. Space is limited; online registration required.
Seasonal Charcuterie Teach & Taste
Wednesday, December 9 from 6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.
Schmooze hosts this limited attendance, socially distanced demonstration that showcases how to put together an artfully presented and totally tasty charcuterie board for intimate holiday gatherings at home this season. Attendees will receive their own pre-packaged charcuterie kit to make at their table once seated as Chef Tony Hamati demonstrates preparation and presentation tips. Patrons can purchase additional pre-packaged charcuterie kits to take home or for gifts to friends. Registrants must select their total party count upon online registration; parties will be seated together and spaced at least 6ft apart from other guests. Space is limited; online registration required.
Gold Palette ArtWalk
Thursday, December 10 from 6:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
Scottsdale’s popular holiday-themed ArtWalk takes place throughout the Scottsdale Arts District showcasing Old Town’s finest art galleries and encouraging art aficionados to revel in the holiday spirit with the sounds of strolling carolers, a visit from Santa and more.
The Dazzle of Historic Old Town
Saturday, December 12 from 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.; Sunday, December 13 from 1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.
This all-new event takes participants back in time to explore the holiday traditions of Historic Old Town through the rediscovery of some of the area’s most beloved hidden gems. Following hour-long storytelling sessions, guests are encouraged to explore the map that will lead them to Old Town cherished treasures. Space is limited; online registration required.
Santa Wine Around
Saturday, December 12 from 6:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
This wine-tasting event, which has become a guest favorite during Scottsdazzle, returns with new safety guidelines and limited participants. Spirited attendees are encouraged to dress as their favorite holiday character (Santa, Mrs. Claus, or even an elf) and sip their way through Old Town Scottsdale’s participating wineries and tasting rooms at their own pace.
Merry Make & Take
Saturday, December 12 from 11:00 a.m.-noon and Sunday, December 13 from 10:00 a.m.-noon
Perfect for ladies’ day before a day of sipping and shopping or a fun day date, The Merchantile hosts two events including pre-packaged supplies needed to create the craft along with a guided tutorial. During Saturday’s hour-long craft session guests will design and paint a special, wood ornament with which to “trim the tree” and Sunday’s two-hour course leads attendees through making their own festive succulent terrarium to brighten up their holiday décor or gift to a loved one. Space is limited; online registration required.
Holiday Food Demonstration
Saturday, December 12 from 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.
The Saguaro Scottsdale Hotel La Señora’s chef will lead guests through a delicious demonstration on how to prepare elegant holiday food items featuring tips, tricks and recipes. Space is limited; online registration required.
Holly Jolly Painting Party
Saturday, December 19 and Sunday, December 20 from 1:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m.
Get jolly with this socially distanced painting party happening on the Marshall Way Bridge. Hosted in partnership with The Brush Bar, participants will receive their own personal supply kit, used to create a fun holiday-themed painting to take home. Online pre-registration is required.
Saturday, December 19 and Sunday, December 20 from 8:00 a.m.-9:00 a.m.
Rise and shine — and stave off holiday stress — with two socially-distanced Zen sessions on Marshall Way Bridge hosted by CorePower Yoga on Saturday and CA Yoga Barre on Sunday. Spaces are limited; online reservations required.
Sparkle & Spin Scavenger Hunt
Saturday, December 19 and Sunday, December 20 from 10:00 a.m.-noon
Participants must find objects as they spin their way through Old Town for this seasonal scavenger hunt and advance towards the finish line to submit their results! Participants must register online.
Sun Salutations Yoga
Monday, December 21 11:00 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.
In honor of the 10th anniversary of the Soleri Bridge, The Foundry hosts a socially distanced serene yoga session that aligns with the Winter Solstice as the sun shines through the pylons on the Soleri Bridge Plaza. Participants will celebrate this milestone landmark, learn a little more about the bridge from Scottsdale Arts, and welcome the winter season. After the yoga session and the Solstice at 12:19 p.m., guests can participate in an Augmented Reality tour of the Art Trail. Registration required.
The city of Scottsdale’s “elves” are still busy wrapping up some final details and adding more events to the Scottsdazzle line-up. Scottsdazzle.com serves as the resource for guests to register for specific events; learn more about each activity, and check out the latest updates including newly added events. To ensure social distancing and safety, many activities have limited availability and therefore registration is required. Net proceeds from events that include a cost will benefit Scottsdale’s Vista del Camino non-profit, which provides a variety of services to the community’s underserved individuals and families.