For four decades now, Balboa Park has been a place where San Diego officially kicks off the holiday season.
The December Nights event is today and tomorrow and hundreds of thousands of people will be there over the two days as they get into the Christmas spirit.
Celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, the annual event has not been without controversy.
And it had to do with its name. Up until 2003 it was known as Christmas on the Prado. But the city decided to change the name of the event to December Nights. City leaders were happy because it made the event more inclusive and would attract even more people.
But many many people were not happy, not happy at all. Removing the word Christmas from the name of the annual event that featured choirs and Christmas carols along with of course Santa and his reindeer was an outrage to many San Diegans back then.
They argued that changing the name to something like December Nights was part of the politically correct war against Christmas.
The argument simmered down after a while and December Nights has indeed grown over the years in the amount of events and the amount of people.
And for the last four years, there has been a Christmas on the Prado event held before December Nights at the Organ Pavilion by the San Diego Children’s Coalition and Christmas Center Committee which was held a week ago.
But in the end, no matter what name you give to holiday events, if you believe in the true meaning of Christmas, it doesn’t change a thing.