Posted Oct 21, 2021 | By Alejandra Cerball

9 Family Fun Things to do in Oxnard During Thanksgiving Break

Here's how to keep the kids entertained during Thanksgiving Break.

Schools out, the kids are home, and it's time to give thanks. Keep the kids entertained this Thanksgiving break with plenty of fun-filled family activities in Oxnard. Whether you prefer to spend time outdoors to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season or want to dive right in and start decorating, here's a list of activities the whole family will enjoy.

1. Plan an adventure at Channel Islands National Park.

Escape the annual Black Friday shopping routine and take the kids on a journey to Channel Islands National Park. The off-season is a great time to visit. Activities include hiking, kayaking, or a guided wildlife tour. Bring your own snacks, and don't forget to pack out what you packed in.

How to Plan Your Trip: Reach any of the five islands by hopping aboard a boat with Island Packers from the Channel Islands Harbor.

2. Get in the Holiday Spirit.

If you love the holidays, start decorating during the Thanksgiving break. The kids can write their letters to Santa while you decide your shopping game plan. Check out our Oxnard Shopping Guide for the best places to shop this holiday season.

Don't miss these top holiday events in Oxnard:

  • Shop holiday goods at Channel Islands Harbor Holiday Farmers Markets in December.
  • See the city's most cheerful neighborhood at Christmas Tree Lane along F & G Streets in Henry T. Oxnard Historic District.
  • Enjoy beautifully decorated Victorian-era architecture up-close on a Heritage Square Holiday Tour.
  • Grab a sampler pack of tamales made by Oxnard's incredible Mexican restaurants from Oxnard Tamale Festival To-Go.
  • Holiday Tree Lighting Extravaganza at The Collection at RiverPark. Kick off the season with an awe-inspiring Tree Lighting Celebration on November 17th from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Collection Park. This festive evening will showcase holiday entertainment provided by Music Freqs including a special performance of the Nutcracker from Ventura County Ballet Company, an extravagant tree lighting and a spectacular firework show.
  • Annual Downtown Oxnard Tree Lighting Ceremony. Mark your calendars for the oldest tree lighting ceremony in town on December 2. Every year, families flock to Plaza Park to watch the 110-ft Christmas Tree light up. Enjoy holiday music, refreshments, and a visit from Santa.
  • Hop on board the Holly Trolley Tours. Get ready to hop on December 14-16 to experience historic Oxnard on a tour that starts at Heritage Square to view Gingerbread houses followed by a visit to Christmas Tree Lane in the Henry T. Oxnard Historic District.
  • Check out the 12th Annual Gingerbread House Exhibit and Tours at Heritage Square Hall to see creative displays of gingerbread creations Dec. 11 & 12, Dec. 18 & 19, Dec. 26 and Jan. 1 & 2 (evening and weekday group tours/ viewing by appointment are available). While visiting, take the guided tour experience of the former houses' exteriors w/select interiors. Check here for details.

3. Enjoy a Day at the Beach.

While California's temperatures cool down during this time of year, it's never too cold to enjoy a day at the beach. Rent a surrey for an afternoon cruise with the family, followed by a picnic with your kid's favorite treats.

Best Beaches in Oxnard to Visit:

  • Silver Strand Beach
  • Oxnard Beach Park / Mandalay State Beach
  • Hollywood Beach

4. Visit Channel Islands Harbor.

Bring the family to Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard to enjoy a fun-filled day on the water. The good news, it won't cost you a fortune to rent a kayak, stand up paddleboard, or an electric boat. Take a Venetian-style gondola cruise launching from Seabridge Marina with Gondola Paradiso. Or, set out on a natural history tour with Channel Islands Kayak Center.

Related: Kayaking in Oxnard: Best Places to Paddle

5. Take a trip to the Farmer's Market.

Stock up on fresh, local ingredients every Sunday at the Channel Islands Farmers Market. The market is open from 10 am to 2 pm, and features live music, entertainment, and dozens of local vendors. When you get home, teach the kids how to make your favorite meal or snack with the ingredients you just bought.

6. Visit the Oxnard Performing Arts Center.

Enjoy local cultural and community events with your family at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center. Click here to check out the latest events, including various dance classes, music, and exercise classes the entire family will enjoy.

7. Plan a self-guided art tour.

Explore local art, murals, sculptures, and installations by local artists in Oxnard. Bring your camera and snap a selfie in front of the murals and artwork. Don't miss the new 3-story tall "Growth" mural at Oxnard City Hall by Mauricio Ramirez, featuring Oxnard-born rapper Anderson .Paak.

8. take a cookie making class.

Local business Profesh Cookies creates DIY cookie kits which include baked cookies, icing and sprinkles all packaged together that are great for kids, families and friends. In-person classes are typically held at Strey Cellars and will resume when gatherings are permissible. Virtual classes are available to be booked for Thanksgiving 2020 with cookie design expert Christy Jones.

9. Enjoy a Thanksgiving Feast.

Dine out, or order a Thanksgiving feast to-go from these incredible restaurants in 2021:

  • La Dolce Vita 1901 has curated a holiday menu that will exceed your expectations. Pre-order your meal by Friday, November 19 at 8 p.m., and enjoy Thanksgiving in the comfort of your home. For parties of 6+, LDV offers a perfectly prepared feast in a beautiful setting on their covered patio or in one of their dining rooms from 1 pm to 6 pm on Thursday, November 25th.
  • Coastal Grill at Embassy Suites by Hilton Mandalay Beach Hotel & Resort is seating guests on Thanksgiving Day from 12 pm-9 pm for $55 per person. ⁠⁠The three course meal will include butternut squash soup, roasted turkey with sweet potato mash, ginger pumpkin cheesecake with caramel and other tasty options.
  • The Raven Tavern is accepting orders for meals to-go through November 19. Meals are $195 and feed 6 to 8 people.
  • Honey Cup Coffeehouse & Creamery is baking mini pumpkin pies for the holiday season. Yum!
  • Tierra Sur at Herzog is offering a 3 course Thanksgiving feast for $125 per person. The menu includes tasty options to choose from but not limited to Salmon Tart, Turkey, Halibut, Prime Rib and Coconut Pumpkin Chiffon Pie! Reservations are available between 12 pm and 7:30 pm.
  • The Waterside Restaurant is serving a Thanksgiving meal with a lot of options to choose from. Enjoy their orange glazed ham with scallop potatoes or cedar plank ham with mashed potatoes and raspberry glaze as well as other delicious main entrée options. Don't forget the dessert choices such as pumpkin tiramisu, pistachio semifreddo and more! Hours of operations are 11 am to 8 pm.

Conclusion: Family Activities During the Thanksgiving Break

Whether you decide to spend the holiday break enjoying outdoor or indoor activities, use these ideas to keep the kids entertained while they're out of school. Download our Oxnard Visitors Guide for top tips on the best things to do, places to eat, and fun local events.

There is so much to be thankful for in Oxnard. Here are the top 10 things we are grateful for:

1. Beautiful weather year round to enjoy a day on the water in Yachtsnard.

2. Always good vibes when enjoying a fun, safe night out.

3. A delicious culinary experience; from taco trails to fresh seafood.

4. World class boxing; Oxnard has the true "Boxnard" experience.

5. Amazing surf & multiple beaches to choose from.

6. A boat ride away to the Channel Islands National Park.

7. Picturesque places to get married.

8. Home to top festivals in the nation, like the California Strawberry Festival.

9. Fun activities to participate in, such as Sea Dog Yoga.

10. Beautiful, local artists art scattered around town.


About the Author:

Alejandra Cerball (Journalist | Travel Writer)

Alejandra Cerball is an award-winning journalist, writer, and editor of alexcerball.com, a Travel + Lifestyle online destination filled with compelling and honest travel tips + resources. On her blog, Alex shares inspiration for your bucket list, family travel + adventure itineraries, and style guides to help you pack for your next trip.

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