events in santa barbara, ca near hotel indigo at the state house

Third Thursday Studio: Assume Dada Focus

Thursday, November 17, 2016 - Thursday, November 17, 2016  
More than just boring ol' Word with Friends! Combine your love for art and words with games and activities focused on words, poetry, mots trouvés, and other Dada-inspired creative endeavors. Director of Engagement Monika Molnar-Metzenthin will beon hand to lead the activities and keep wine glasses full.
Location: Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara Time: 6p.m.
Photo: Courtesy of MCA Santa Barbara

64th Annual Downtown Santa Barbara Holiday Parade

Friday, December 2, 2016 - Friday, December 2, 2016  
Officially kicking off the holiday season, the signature Downtown Santa Barbara event brings a colossal contingent of high-stepping marching bands, fabulous holiday-themed floats, spectacular performance groups, local personalities, and a celebrity Grand Marshal. More than 65,000 spectators line State Street each year in anticipation of Santa Barbara's only nighttime parade. It will begin at 6:30pm at State and Sola Streets and concluceds at Cota Street.

Photo: Courtesy of

Marc E. Bassy

Wednesday, December 7, 2016 - Wednesday, December 7, 2016  
As a songwriter for artists like Chris Brown and Sean Kingston, San Francisco-raised Marc Griffin is an experienced pop music craftsman. But as Marc E. Bassy, solo artist, he's a forward-thinking R&B auteur with more of an ear towards the genre's growing experimental fringe. Only The Poets, Vol. 1, his new solo debut mixtape-EP (out July 29), features psychedelic, distinctly modern-sounding productions alongside hooks that could have come from any period in contemporary R&B history. Atop it all is his voice, an affable croon that tiptoes the ever-blurring line between rapping and singing.

 Velvet Jones

Photo: Courtesy of Nightout Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara Festival Ballet Presents: The Nutcracker Gala

Saturday, December 10, 2016 - Saturday, December 10, 2016  
Enjoy a performance of The Nutcracker as well as a gala that will take place directly after in the Arlington private courtyard. There will be raffle tickets available at the Arlington as well as fantastic prizes. This event will benefit a non-profit organization. This year, there will be a sugar plum fairy is the principal dancer from the Boston Gallet and a cavalier from the NYC Ballet. This is going to be a magical event!

 Courtesy of Nightout Santa Barbara

31st Annual Parade of Lights at the Harbor

Sunday, December 11, 2016 - Sunday, December 11, 2016
The 31st annual Parade of Lights activities will begin at 3pm. At 5:30pm the annual boat parade will begin as 20-30 boats motor, sail, and paddle the Santa Barbara Coastline. Fireworks begin at 7pm. Best viewing locations include Stearns Wharf and the Santa Barbara Breakwater.  Judging takes place at Stearns Wharf and boats are awarded cash and prizes in five categories.

Photo: Courtesy of

Brian Setzer Orchestra Holiday Show

Monday, December 19, 2016 - Monday, December 19, 2016  
The iconic guitarist, songwriter, vocalist and three-time Grammy-Award winner Brian Setzer and his 19-piece orchestra whip up a huge dose of retro holiday cheer with their Christmas Rocks! The acclaimed show also features music from their latest Christmas album. Consistently cited as one of the world's greatest living guitarists, Setzer's trademark guitar work and vocal stylings are matched with the orchestra's rockin' big-band horn arrangements- an unbeatable combination guaranteed to rock you into the holiday spirit.

Photo: Courtesy of

Nihonmachi Revisited

Nihonmachi Revisited: Santa Barbara's Japanese American Community in Transition, 1900-1940

Head to the historic El Presidio de Santa Barbara site to experience not only the Spanish history of Santa Barbara, but Asian American as well. This insightful exhibition highlights our historic Nihonmachi (Japan Town) with a collection of obscure photographs and accounts of daily life from local residents and families as well as fragments of elegant, Japanese ceramics excavated on site.

The museum is open daily from 10:30am–4:30pm at 123 E. Canon Perdido Street in downtown Santa Barbara. For more info please call 805-965-0093 or visit their website.

Japanese Imari plate, El Presidio de Santa Barbara State Historic Park Archaeology collection,. Photo by Anne Petersen.

First Thursday Art Walk

Whole Year

The first Thursday of every month, 5–8 p.m.

An evening of art and culture in downtown Santa Barbara. On the first Thursday of each month, participating museums, galleries and art-related venues offer free access to visual and performing art in a fun and social environment. 

Image Caption: Julia Barbosa Landois, Culo de Oro/The Golden Ass, 2011, Performance still. Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum, Courtesy Walley Films. 


Beachside Art Walk

When: Every Sunday
Local artists and artisans display their work by the beach alongside Cabrillo Boulevard, just east of Stearns Wharf. 

Time: 10am- 4pm