Rain -- and the threat of rain -- did not dampen the happiness and wonder of the holiday season for Martinez and Pleasant Hill residents during each city's kickoff events. In Pleasant Hill on Nov. 28, members of the Studio A dance group, top left photo, line up to take the stage, including from right, Kiara Rizzuti, Mackenzie Canton and Issa Gianatiempo, all of Martinez; Ashley Wu, of Lafayette; and Grace Leimpeter, of Pleasant Hill. The fifth annual Light up the Night celebration downtown also included a tree lighting, top middle, where Venessa Ontiveros, 6, of Pleasant Hill, sits atop her dad Jose's shoulders to get a better view. And Fancy Ferriage by Horse and Carriage of Martinez, top right, takes visitors on horse-drawn carriage rides. At the Martinez Holiday Frolic and Snow Park event Nov. 30, the Holiday Light Parade was canceled due to weather, but that left more time for children to visit with Santa Claus, above, like April Hoskins, 6, left, and her twin sister Alivia. The snow park was moved inside where kids such as 4-year-old Drake Watson of Martinez, left, took to the slopes for a downhill adventure on real snow, trucked in for the event.



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