“Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat!” Remember that little jingle? In six months time it will be raising-the-roof on radio stations all over town. Yep, six months from today is Christmas. Delightfully that means thousands of colored lights will cover houses, buildings, boats, but none quite as wonderfully robust as those displayed at the Riverside Mission Inn…ah, Christmas in Riverside.
Although I have never heard any friends discuss the latest recipe for goose, and have never had it myself for Christmas dinner or any other meal, I long for the nightly (well, maybe not exactly nightly) drives with Spaceman in pursuit of Christmas light decorations. More is my desire as you really cannot have too many lights up at the holidays. Thankfully the Riverside Mission Inn realizes this and steps up for those who haven’t quite gotten it yet.
Lest you think lights are the only draw here, the area around the Inn becomes a winter wonderland with an outdoor ice skating rink, strolling carolers dressed in Dickens’ attire, hot chocolate stands, sweet treats. It’s all so wonderfully over-the-top American! Happily this year we are spending the holidays in the states so we can thoroughly enjoy all the revelry.
(front child clinging to rail while red shirt child being pulled round in terror, or fun?)
Away from Christmas lights, The Mission Inn still has it going on with an outstanding spa and their own chapel where the altar is covered in gold leaf and the mosaics are made of Tiffany glass.
Some fun trivia:
- The Inn is a National Landmark building and hosted President Ronald Reagan during his honeymoon (eight other presidents have visited as well).
- The Inn is the muse for Anne Rice’s book Angel Time and the lyrics for Carrie Jacobs-Bond song A Perfect Day
- The Inn (to my cousin’s delight, I am sure) is rumored to have a ghost roaming the premises.
Details: The Mission Inn Hotel and Spa, 3649 Mission Inn Avenue, Riverside, CA 92501, www.missioninn.com