By Kyla Skinner

Oh, December, what a busy month for most of us! Let’s not forget to just take in the quiet moments too, to cuddle in with our families and pets, warm indoors during the long dark evenings. Watch movies, bake, light candles…ahhhh…I write this article in advance it’s actually still hot outside, but writing this makes me so excited for all the cozy!

Kyla Skinner Headshot e1682704831836
Kyla Skinner

I know your calendar is full already, but as always, there are some super fun events planned for us downtown. 


Side note: I recently traveled to Europe to an optical trade show, and while I had the most amazing time and absolutely fell in love with Paris, especially, I was also so grateful to come home to my life here in Atascadero. What is the saying, “Create a life you don’t need to vacation from”? That is honestly what I could say as I flew into SLO and drove home to Atascadero. I was grateful for our quiet town, our beautiful rolling hills, our majestic oak trees. For my family. For my business. For the supportive community and for our City who, works hard to plan fun events, to collaborate with us business owners, and for my fellow supportive tribe of business owners. Sappy, but I always am – I’m sure you’ve noticed, and my heart swelled to realize this is my life, and I love it. Paris was dreamy, but my real life is too. Atascadero, I love you! Okay, sappy ramble over. Onward to events for December!

First thing, starting off the month right, we have Light Up the Downtown combined with the Holiday Sip & Shop. Enjoy an evening of community entertainment, Santa, complimentary Model-A-Firetruck & Hay Rides, hot chocolate, and more! The event begins at 5:30 p.m., December 1, in the Sunken Gardens and continues throughout the Downtown with the First Friday Holiday Sip & Shop. Shops will be open late, and wine and beer tastings will be available from participating merchants. A great way to enjoy shopping and strolling Downtown along with the festivities of the season! For Sip & Shop ticket information, visit or Call (805) 466-2044.

One of my favorite new businesses, The Pottery on Entrada, is already moving into a bigger space! Go check out their new digs at 5800 El Camino Real. They have created an amazing community of pottery lovers, classes for beginners and experienced artists. They will be open to shop for handmade gifts on December 2 and 3; pottery makes the best gifts! For more details, please email 

Head out of town a few miles to The Fableist Wine Company, technically in Templeton, but I’m sneaking it in here as this event last year was truly magical. A wreath making workshop will be held Tuesday, December 5 at 5:30 p.m. It is an idyllic spot, a beautiful farmhouse nestled in the vineyards. You’ll cozy up with a table full of local foraged greens, the smell of bay leaves fills the air, and you will be guided by one of my favorite florist friends, the talented Krysti Jerdin, to create a beautiful wreath that will last all winter. Tickets are $65 and include a glass of wine and treats. Call (805) 246-1431 or visit See you there!

December 8 (5 to 9 p.m.) is one of my favorites, Winter Wonderland, complete with REAL snow! (Snow sponsored by the Kiwanis, thank you!) I loved hurtling down the slope on a sled with my daughter last year; we may have crashed into a hay bale at the end. Cold red noses and fingers are warmed up by hot chocolate and other treats offered by over 50 vendors here for this event. Centered around Sunken Gardens and the entire downtown, this year’s event includes bungee jumps, obstacle courses, community entertainment, Santa and Mrs. Claus, and more! I’m also always mesmerized by watching them MAKE the snow. I love sneaking out of my shop to watch them on Palma turn it into a literal wonderland. If you are around earlier in the day, stop to watch them make it from thousands of blocks of ice and a blower. Fascinating. 

Thanks for reading, and thanks for supporting my little eyeglass shop in my little corner of downtown Atascadero! I appreciate you! 


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