Palm Springs Has a Heart for the Holidays!

Nothing says holidays more than children, pets, and giving to charity—and, of course, Santa Claus and Christmas trees! Here’s a quick recap of our favorite upcoming events this month, and all for a good cause!

The 14th Annual Christmas Tree Lane Silent & Live Auction Party benefitting ACT for Multiple Sclerosis, Friday, December 5th at 5 PM at Hard Rock Hotel, Palm Springs, 150 S. Indian Canyon, Palm Springs, CA. ACT for Multiple Sclerosis is a local charity that provides free services for Coachella Valley residents diagnosed with this incurable disease.  This is the Silent & Live Auction Party where attendees can ooh and aah, mingle and bid on the myriad trees themed for celebrities and designed by some of Southern California’s finest designers.  Started by Merv Griffin at the Merv Griffin Hotel (now the Parker Palm Springs), the tradition is kept alive by ACT for MS founding president Gloria Greer and Christmas Tree chair Linda Williamson.  Traditional Celebrity Host for the annual party is entertainer Jack Jones. This year’s Celebrity Hosts are TV and stage star Ruta Lee and comedian/impressionist Scott Record. They will be accompanied by Bill Marx on piano. Celebs confirmed include NY Broadway star Carol Channing, football and action star Fred “The Hammer” Williamson (his tree is dedicated to the Greatest Generation), author and screenwriter Andrew Neiderman, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Lisa Vanderpump, KPSP Local broadcaster Patrick Evans,  Jazz singer and radio host Jimi “Fitz” Fitzgerald and Palm Springs’ very own Bella DaBall. Other trees up for auction include Palm Springs Mayor Steve Pougnet, local resident/singing star Barry Manilow with Lucie Arnaz & Lawrence Luckinbill and a tree honoring our firefighters, filled with black and white plush Dalmatians.  A special mini tree boutique includes candy and toy trees and holiday wreaths.  Cost is $35 for general admission; $100 for VIP seating.  Includes wine bar and passed hors d’oeuvres. Come join us at the Hard Rock Hotel Palm Springs, downstairs ballroom. Tickets and more information: or call 760-773-9806.

There is nothing more iconic than a puppy or kitten for Christmas. However, these furry friends need a lot of loving, nurturing and care. Palm Springs is lucky to be a resort, but at the same time, some snowbirds get adorable puppies and kittens and then discard them after a few months when it’s time to depart.  Our local shelters are full of these wonderful, abandoned creatures.  Animal Samaritans, a local charity based in Thousand Palms, is holding its 14th Annual Walk for the Animals at Palm Desert Civic Park on Saturday, December 6th; registration is at 9 am; the walk activities are from 10am to 2pm.  Walkers (individuals and in teams) collect donations.  There is a short walk, as well as a longer walk—approximately one mile around the park perimeter.  All animals must be on a leash and friendly.  Admission is free. There will be food vendors and “Be kind to Animals” student artwork contest. Please visit for more information.

Santa Fly In at the Palm Springs Air Museum, 745 N. Gene Autry Trail, Palm Springs, CA 92262. On Sat, Dec. 13 at 1pm, Santa flies into the Palm Springs Air Museum tarmac bringing goody bags for all the girls and boys!  All children 12 years old and younger are admitted free of charge when accompanied by at least one paying adult. Kids will meet Santa under the wing of a vintage warbird and will receive a free goody bag. All children will have a chance to meet Santa—be sure to bring your cameras!  Before or after seeing Santa, visit the three hangars filled with vintage aircraft from World War Two, Korea and Vietnam. Most of the planes inside the hangar are in flyable condition.  Santa will arrive in an open biplane “Stearman.”  Biplane rides are for sale, no reservations needed for $150 per 15 minute ride (after museum admission).  Santa visits are included with regular museum admission, which ranges from $9 to $16. There are also special family rates available. Tickets and more information: or call 760-778-6262.

Happy Holidays, Palm Springs!

About David J Castello

David J Castello is the Editor-in-Chief and Chief Operating Officer for the Castello Cities Internet Network (,,, etc). His debut novel, The Diary of an Immortal (1945-1959) was published in 2016.

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