Enjoy Union Fun by the Bay this Holiday Season

By Tim Paulson, Executive Director San Francisco Labor Council and Cherri Senders, President Labor 411

As we digest the bitter national election, we must acknowledge that the holidays are here, and Bay Area residents have more than earned the opportunity to enjoy the yuletide spirit.

The City by the Bay has long been one of the most passionate and engaged union cities in the United States, and 2016 was a momentous year for workers. In addition to voters passing Proposition W for a Free City College, the San Francisco Labor Council supported a Labor in the Schools pilot program, lobbied for a citywide project labor agreement policy and saw the continued success of local hiring ordinances, providing the city with a healthy and diverse local economy.

Whatever the season, visitors to San Francisco can enjoy all sorts of fun cultural events. With the holidays in mind, the venues and events below have something for everyone, whether it’s an all-time favorite like the Nutcracker or something new like the Reindeer Romp at the zoo. And they’re all union staffed, so you know you’ll be supporting good jobs at the same time!

Happy holidays!

1. San Francisco Ballet – Nutcracker

• When: Dec. 10 – 29
• Where: War Memorial Opera House
301 Van Ness Avenue (in the Civic Center)
San Francisco, CA 94102
• What: “On Christmas Eve 1944, the audience at San Francisco’s War Memorial Opera House experienced the American premiere of Nutcracker. An instant sensation, the ballet launched a national holiday tradition.”
• More info here

2. San Francisco Zoo – ZooLights and Reindeer Romp

• When: ZooLights: Dec. 16-30; Reindeer Romp: Now thru Jan. 1
•  Where: San Francisco Zoo
Great Highway
San Francisco, CA 94132
• What: ZooLights: “ZooLights 2016 takes you on a magical trip to a destination like no other – with Santa Claus, reindeer and a holiday marketplace with food and seasonal delights. Lovely music from carolers will fill the air and bright lights will shine the way as you leave the city behind and retreat to a holiday hideaway.”
Reindeer Romp: “Celebrate the holiday season by visiting the animals who help Santa deliver presents to all the children in the land.  Learn what they eat (besides carrots and cookies on Christmas Eve) and see what they look like up close and on the ground.”
• Unions: UNITE HERE, Teamsters
•    More info on ZooLights here and Reindeer Romp here

3. Orpheum Theatre – Irving Berlin’s White Christmas

• When: Dec. 14-24
• Where: SHN Golden Gate Theatre
1 Taylor St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
• What: “Irving Berlin’s White Christmas tells the story of a song-and-dance team putting on a show in a magical Vermont inn and falling for a stunning sister act in the process. Full of dancing, laughter and some of the greatest songs ever written!”
• Union: IATSE
• More info here

4. Six Flags Discovery Kingdom – Holiday in the Park

• When: Now thru Jan. 1
• Where: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
1001 Fairgrounds Drive
Vallejo, CA 94589
• What: “Gather with your loved ones to enjoy sparkling lights, festive decorations, alluring scents and seasonal treats, playful activities, breathtaking rides, and heartwarming shows, including your favorite animal presentations.”
• Union: IAM
• More info here

5. San Francisco Symphony – Holiday Performances

• When: Various dates in December
• Where: Davies Symphony Hall
201 Van Ness Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94102
• What: Multiple holiday performances including Handel’s Messiah, The Snowman: A holiday film with the San Francisco Symphony and A Charlie Brown Christmas – Live!
• Buy tickets here

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