December 8, 2017

The Sounds of Christmas at the Candlelight Pavilion in Claremont

IMG_3974Officially Christmas may be 18 days away, but for my 51 Daytripper Tours passengers and I, Christmas was already here as we journeyed north to hear The Sounds of Christmas at the Candlelight Pavilion in Claremont, CA. With David Lisi behind the wheel, we knew we were in good hands especially with the high wind conditions on the highways of southern California. In fact, by the time we reached our morning comfort stop in Murrieta, we could see the dust swirling in the air and tumbleweeds blowing across the road. Fortunately, at this time, there were no wildfires nearby. We continued north into the Inland Empire of Riverside County to the charming town of Claremont, 30 miles east of downtown Los Angeles in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. In 2007 Claremont was rated by CNN/Money Magazine as the fifth best place to live in the US and was the highest rated place in California on the list. Due to its large number of trees and residents with doctoral degrees, it is sometimes referred to as “The City of Trees and PhDs.” IMG_3986Claremont is one of the few remaining places in North America with American Elm trees that have not been exposed to Dutch Elm Disease. The stately trees line Indian Hill Boulevard which we drove down on our way to the dinner theater. About half of our passengers had been here before and knew the caliber of cuisine and entertainment we were about to experience, but for the rest, I informed them that the shows here are known for the same quality as Broadway shows that you’d see in downtown L.A. The gourmet food prepared by the executive chef and served by his formal wait staff ranks the Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theater as a fine food restaurant that rivals any fine dining establishment in Los Angeles and San Bernardino. We had our choice of traditional holiday slow roasted tri tip served au jus, cranberry orange marinated chicken breast wrapped in a puff pastry, grilled salmon fillet with citrus garlic butter and roasted red pepper cream sauce or farfalle pasta served with sun dried tomato cream sauce. Yum! Dessert was served at intermission. Our choices were sugar-free carrot cake, sugar-free blueberry cheesecake, gourmet mousse cake, or gourmet cheesecake. Needless to say, no one left IMG_3983hungry! After a lovely performance by pre-show guitarist Michael Ryan, the lights lowered and the show began! In 1985 The Candlelight Pavilion hosted its first Christmas show, and for more than 30 years they have continued the tradition of writing and producing each of their Christmas shows with a focus on the spirit of the season and bringing family and friends together. The large cast was energetic with much singing and dancing as the storyline unfolded. The second half was virtually brimming with Christmas cheer as Santa and Mrs. Claus came on stage to join in the song. Children were welcome on stage as well, sitting on their laps and gazing at them with eyes of wonder. We laughed, we applauded and we left the Candlelight Pavilion with full tummies and full hearts filled with the spirit of the season!
IMG_3987IMG_3312– Pat Brown
Tour: The Sounds of Christmas at the Candlelight Pavilion
Date: December 7, 2017


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