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Lighting of the Snowmen set for Dec. 8

ONE YOUNG ADMIRER had to get up close and personal with one of the snowmen. Index-Tribune file photo

ONE YOUNG ADMIRER had to get up close and personal with one of the snowmen. Index-Tribune file photo

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The ninth annual Lighting of the Snowmen at Cornerstone moves to 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8.

Come out and be the first to see what the Snowmen are up to this year. Festivities include photos with Santa on the Big Blue Chair, a special holiday performance by the Sonoma Ballet Conservatory, live music with the Sean Carscadden Trio in the snowflake-filled courtyard, the new Napa Valley Toy Company, Petaluma High School Choir singing classic Christmas carols, a free gift wrapping station for Cornerstone purchases (available through Christmas), wine tasting in three locations, a traditional German Beer Garden with a variety of beers and sausages, classic holiday films in the Olive Grove Cinema and much more.

Admission to the Lighting of the Snowmen is free but because of overcrowding, parking is $5 a car with 100 percent of the proceeds benefiting the Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance.

Overflow parking is available two minutes down the road at Jacuzzi Winery with a shuttle to and from the event leaving every five minutes. The Lighting of the Snowmen has become a favorite holiday tradition in Sonoma.

In addition to wine, food, fun and live music, during the Lighting of the Snowmen event, Cornerstone is hosting a benefit to support the Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance. An arms length of tickets for a variety of children’s events will go a long way for $20.

Swap benefit tickets for gingerbread men and women to decorate, hot chocolate, face painting by Popo the Clown, kid’s holiday crafts, grab bag gifts, wacky holiday games, cotton candy, popcorn balls and more. All proceeds from the benefit ticket sales will be donated to the Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance.

In addition to all of the special events and ongoing holiday extras at Cornerstone Sonoma, there will also be a complimentary gift-wrapping station available each Friday, Saturday and Sunday starting Thanksgiving weekend and running all the way through to Christmas. Shoppers can have their gift purchases classically wrapped in an iconic Tiffany blue box. Naturally, because of the size of many of the sculptures, art objects and other large items, these cannot be included for wrapping. Additionally, musical groups and choruses will be at Cornerstone on weekends to entertain the guests with holiday carols.  Cornerstone is located at 23570 Arnold Drive. For information, call 933-3010 or see cornerstonegardens.com.