University City’s Christmas Tree and Menorah Lighting has become an annual tradition for the community. Paired up with the Dinner with Santa at the Standley Park Recreation Center, this year the lighting will be on Dec. 13. Dinner with Santa starts at 5:15 p.m. Offered by the University City Parks Council, the dinner is catered by Lorna’s Italian Kitchen, and the family-friendly prices are: $7, for ages 12-and-up; $3, ages 2-12; ages 2 and under eat free. The official Christmas Tree and Menorah Lighting Musical Program begins at 6:30 p.m. and is organized by the University City Community Association. The Standley Middle School Band ushers in the holiday spirit, followed by performances from: UC Girl Scouts, Doyle Elementary Kindergarten Singers, University City High School Choir, and the Our Mother of Confidence Children’s Choir. There will also be a special performance by Tom Ventimiglia, singing his own Hanukkah song.
The evening is supported by a donation from Costa Verde Regency Centers, and SANDAG donated the lighting. The local Vons on Governor Drive is providing cookies, and the Coffee Bean, in the same center, is making nice, warm hot chocolate. The folks from San Diego Fire Rescue will be around, and they’re always a big hit with the kids. Crafts will be available throughout the night, too. Big thanks to event chair Darlene Ventimiglia, who has organized the lighting and dinner for decades, with help from Barbara Henshaw.
And the biggest treat for the kids is the visit from jolly Saint Nick. Santa will be there to take photos with the children and their families. Come out and enjoy the dinner, music, refreshments, crafts, the magical lighting of the menorah and Christmas tree, and the community holiday spirit.
For more info, call the Standley Rec Center at 858-552-1652. Standley Park is located at 3585 Governor Drive, between Standley Middle and Spreckels Elementary schools.
The University City High School PTSA is holding its annual Adopt-A-Family program, whereby selected student families are provided gifts and food items to help them celebrate the holidays. To make a donation, go to uchsptsa.org. To coordinate adopting a family or providing gifts or gift cards, contact [email protected].
EdUCate! recently received an anonymous $10,000 gift that will go directly to teacher and principal grants at all five UC public schools – Curie, Doyle, and Spreckels Elementary, Standley Middle, and University City High schools. The grants fund vital needs such as Mending Matters, a mental health program at the high school, schoolwide e-learning subscriptions and Spanish language learning programs.
The EdUCate! Foundation for University City Public Schools raises money to help bridge the gaps in school funding. All donations are welcome and needed. A year-end gift to EdUCate! keeps contributions local and strengthens the local community and schools. Go to uc-educate.org for more information about EdUCate! and to make a donation.
Join Chabad of University City for their 32nd annual public menorah lighting at Westfield UTC, 4545 La Jolla Village Drive (at Genesee). It will be held Dec. 22, from 6-8 p.m., at Palm Plaza by the food court. Jelly doughnuts, Hanukkah￼gelt, dreidels, crafts for kids, Hanukkah￼music and more. For more information, call 858-455-1670 or email￼￼. The Chabad Center of University City is located at 3813 Governor Drive and its website is chabaduc.org.
UCHS MARCHING BAND
Congratulations to the University City High School Centurion Sound Marching Band and Color Guard on their first-place finish in the Southern California School Band & Orchestra Association Championships held in Downey, California on Nov. 16. The Color Guard also won the award for best performance among all schools. Twenty-five schools competed in the SCBOA 2A Division, and UCHS was the only 2A school from San Diego County who qualified to compete in this final tournament of the season. The UCHS music program is under the direction of Brandon Corenman and supported by Principal Jeff Olivero and Booster parents.