December Nights in Spanish Village Art Center: The Biggest Celebration of the Year!!!

Friday and Saturday
December 4 & 5
11am – 11pm

Original Paper Tapestry by Sue Britt, Studio 34A, Spanish Village Art Center, Balboa Park, San Diego.

Some 15 years ago I became a member of Spanish Village Art Center. I was new to San Diego…ignorant of much of the tradition. Within a few months, I experienced my first “Christmas on the Prado”…a 22 year tradition. I was overwhelmed! I have participated in 13 more since then…although the name has since been changed to December Nights.

Yet, every week during the year local residents come into my studio in amazement and say “I never knew this place existed!” WHAT… 350,000 people attend December Nights every year. It is the single largest festival of celebration in all of San Diego… and you don’t know we exist?!

Sterling Silver Cuff Bracelet by patio artist Paul Kloppenborg, Spanish Village Art Center.

Since committing to publish this newsletter, I have researched the stories in the past promoting December Nights. To my horror I realized that, at best, we were referred to simply as…”unique gift shopping at the museum stores and with the artisans of Spanish Village”!!! The worst was one article that actually said, “gift shopping at the museum stores and with the artisans of Spanish Village, which feature one of a kind curios”… CURIOS…seriously???!!!

Well, I am here to set the record straight!!! If Balboa Park is the “Crown Jewel” of San Diego, then Spanish Village is surely the “Hidden Treasure!” You can spend your entire December Nights’ experience in Spanish Village and never want for more!!!!

“Bottle with Golden Egg,” by Ceramic Artist Pierre Bounaud, Studio 40 and Potters’ Guild, Spanish Village Art Center.



As you walk down the sidewalk approaching Spanish Village you see hundreds of colorfully wrapped gifts, surrounded by thousands of multicolored lights and 10 ft handmade Christmas trees, each decorated uniquely. As you step onto the patio, suddenly you are hit with the smell of hot apple cider wafting through the air.



Each of our 37 studio is open from 11am to 11pm both nights. Warm lights invite you in. Inside, the artists are there to greet you, to explain their art and to offer you the opportunity to fulfill your gift giving needs with unique, handcrafted items. There are also beautiful handmade ornaments…ornaments you will not find anywhere else!!! In addition to the studio artists, there is a sea of art and artists throughout the patio, all with something amazing to offer.


“Lion Within”, Digital Photograph by artist Mary Ella Bowles, Studio 16B, Spanish Village Art Center.


Enjoy food and drinks in our food court from 3pm – 11pm. The Cravory, Niederfranks’ Ice Cream, Perky Bean Coffee, Seb’s Panini and Crepes, Devine Pastabilities (Torpasta), Swieners, Wicked Maine Lobster and Chris’ Ono Grinds Island Grill are there to tempt your tastebuds!!!



To kill the chill…YUM!!



Live music and entertainment provided by local artists throughout both days and nights.



Visit Santa with your little ones…offering goodies and that “photo op”.


Blue Shell Wall Pocket by Ceramic artist Vicky DeLong, Studio 16B, Spanish Village Art Center, Balboa Park.


Oh…did I already mention that??!! Well, it bears repeating!!!

Yes, Spanish Village has everything you could want during December Nights. Of course, if you hate crowds, don’t care about the lobster sandwiches or hot apple cider and Santa already has your list…you can still purchase the unique gifts created by our artists. Spanish Village is open 7 days a week from 11-4…all of December…and all year! Support local art and local artists this December…and year round!


“Big Wave”, Hand Cast Sterling Silver Necklace by jewelry artist Victoria Ward, Studio 18, Spanish Village Art Center.



Thanks for Listening!
Maureen King
Studio 35
Spanish Village Art Center
Balboa Park, San Diego


Hand Painted Ceramic Tiles by ceramic artist Kathy Waller, Studio 2, Spanish Village Art Center, Balboa Park.
“Flower” necklace by polymer clay artist Ellie Hitchcock, Studio 30, Spanish Village Art Center, Balboa Park.
“Dwelling Place”, original oil by Leonard Carapezza, Studio 26, Spanish Village Art Center, Balboa Park.








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