This holiday season, winter comes to the OC, thanks to Absolute Event Solutions’ (AES) much-anticipated and amazing holiday attraction Winter Fest at the OC Fair & Event Center opening December 18 and continuing through January 3. Winter Fest is the all-new family holiday festival filled with a winter-wonderland featuring ice-skating, ice tubing, the world’s largest walk-through ornament, live entertainment, reindeer feedings, VIP private cabanas and more.
“We love creating events that instantly engage and delight guests of all ages,” Mark Entner, Absolute Event Solutions CEO, says. “This is an affordable holiday experience that ensures a fantastic adventure rain or shine, for seventeen days and nights during the traditional holiday school break. The fairgrounds are the perfect venue for Winter Fest, offering both indoor and outdoor space. The majority of the main attractions and entertainment are within buildings, essentially making Winter Fest ‘El Nino-proof.’ We’re thrilled to bring a wintry sense of wonder to Orange County, and we’re inviting the community to join us for what is sure to become an annual tradition.”
Guests of all ages will be filled with fun and glee thanks to this exciting and new winter wonderland that will include the following attractions:
- World’s largest illuminated ornament: guests will pass through Winter Fest’s icy gates into a whimsical wonderland, strolling through the center of the world’s largest illuminated ornament
- Ice tubing: Guests will experience excitement and unlimited access ice tubing down a 130-foot, six-lane ice slide
- Let it snow: guests will be surrounded with a spectacular snow-setting and true holiday experience thanks to Winter Fest’s nightly snowfall and tree lighting ceremony
- Ice skating: the Hangar building inside the fairgrounds will be transformed into an elegant festival space with a massive ice skating rink, where brilliant hanging snowflakes light up the ice below. Onlookers can watch skaters circle the rink while a theater-sized screen will be playing holiday films in the background
- Endless entertainment: guests can enjoy grand-scale fun at more than 30 carnival rides and games, experience glee at the reindeer graham cracker feedings, be entertained by roaming holiday characters, and enjoy performances by singers, artists, and magicians — and even themed-bounce houses for young attendees. Children of all ages can opt for festive face painting, balloon art, and official photos with Santa. Guests can also enjoy rides on the North Pole LTD trackless train
- Sweets and tasty treats: guests can visit Mrs. Claus’ Bakery for sweets and live fudge cutting and cinnamon roll making. Hungrier revelers can enjoy seasonally and internationally inspired foods, including soups in bread bowls, potpies, tamales, Chinese food, crepes, and turkey and stuffing. Traditional SoCal fun foods will also be available, including pizza, tacos, grilled cheese, and BBQ kabobs. Kettle corn and popcorn will be offered for guests on the go, and thirsty festival-goers can indulge in a tempting hot chocolate and martini bar. The OC fairgrounds’ traditional Baja Blues Restaurant will be re-imagined as a snow-covered ski lodge, where guests can enjoy food, libations, and local bands
Winter Fest offers the spirit of the holiday season at an affordable price, with admission starting at only $10 online. All tickets are a fantastic value, allowing unlimited access to tube down the 130-foot, six-lane ice slide (available for guests 42” and taller). Tickets also include one complimentary carnival ride and game in the midway, and access to themed bounce houses for young attendees. Admission also grants time with the most famous couple in the North Pole, allowing guests to meet Santa Claus, enjoy heartwarming tales from Mrs. Claus during story time, and partake in the elves’ arts, crafts, and games in the North Pole building.
Skating is $15 per person including skates and is available on a first come, first serve basis. Skate assists are available for $5. Private, rink-side VIP cabanas are also available for $99 per session, creating a Winter Fest destination for holiday office parties, birthday parties, family retreats, or couples looking for a new way to celebrate date night. Each cabana holds up to 10 guests but can be expanded to accommodate parties up to 100. All cabanas offer a special menu with holiday inspired foods and craft cocktails, and a cabana server to attend to guests’ needs.
Winter Fest casts its icy spell over the OC Fair & Event Center for seventeen days and nights December 18 – January 3. Hours of operation are 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Special hours of operation include December 24 (Christmas Eve) 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and December 25 (Christmas Day) 2 – 11 p.m. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be present at Winter Fest every day and night through Christmas Eve, December 24.
Admission starts at only $10 online (for a limited time). Ticket prices Monday through Friday are $10 online, $15 onsite for children age 4 – 11, and $20 online, $25 onsite for adults. Ticket Prices Saturday and Sunday are $15 online, $20 onsite for children age 4 – 11, and $25 online, $30 onsite for adults. Children 3 and under are free. Tickets on sale now. Adult season passes for unlimited access for all of Winter Fest’s dates are available for $45 advance and online (limited supply); children’s season passes are available for $25 advance and online (limited supply).
For more information on Winter Fest please visit visit WinterFestOC.com.