RIVERSIDE, CALIF. - The AAA Four Diamond, historic Mission Inn Hotel & Spa pays homage to the holidays with its highly anticipated Switch On Ceremony Friday, November 28, kicking off The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights – five weeks of holiday merriment featuring one of the nation's largest holiday light collections of its kind.
Now in its 22nd year, The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights is an annual gift to the community from property Owners Duane and Kelly Roberts who saved the historic landmark in 1992. A beloved Southern California tradition and a not-to-be-missed holiday extravaganza, The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights commences with a celebratory Switch On Ceremony – in which the castle-like, historic hotel is instantly illuminated with more than 4 million holiday lights followed by a full fireworks display – and continues through January 6, 2014.
Highlights of The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights include appearances by Santa Claus, the world's largest manmade mistletoe measuring 12' x 8', horse-drawn carriage rides, fresh snow, an elaborately decorated Christmas tree in the hotel's lobby and delectable holiday confections at the original famous Casey's Cupcakes located at The Inn.
The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights, by the numbers:
- More than 4 million enchanting holiday lights
- 250,000+ visitors from all over the world in 2013
- More than 400 animated figures including angels, elves and carolers
- 10 weeks of round-the-clock preparations orchestrated by a crew of 20
- 22 years running.
"For 22 years, it has brought us tremendous joy in presenting The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights to this wonderful Inland Southern California community," said Festival Founders and Keepers of the Inn, Duane and Kelly Roberts. "Each Festival of Lights is bigger than the one before, and the event remains free as an experience families can enjoy together. Countless thousands of individuals make the yearly trek to The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights, and we are both honored and delighted to welcome every single guest to The Inn."
Whether it's for an annual family tradition, a gathering of friends or a romantic holiday, The Historic Mission Inn makes visits during Festival of Lights unforgettable with holiday experiences for every budget including festive room packages, signature seasonal treatments at Kelly's Tuscan-inspired Spa, shopping at the well-curated Kelly's Boutique, sweet treats from Casey's Cupcakes or dinner at Duane's Prime Steaks & Seafood, a AAA Four Diamond Restaurant since 1996.
The City of Riverside has adopted The Mission Inn's Festival of Lights as a citywide initiative with a vision of a Dickensian holiday spectacle featuring lights and decorations throughout downtown Riverside, an outdoor ice-skating rink on the Main Street pedestrian mall, holiday vendors and family-friendly entertainment.