Sand is in the forecast this holiday season – and lots of it – as the City of West Palm Beach prepares for Sandi’s return to her waterfront home. Sandi, a 600-ton, 35-foot holiday tree sculpted of sand, is the star of the City’s seasonal celebrations. She returns to the waterfront for the sixth year, as part of the City’s Holiday in Paradise promotion. Sandi will begin to take shape in mid-November and officially begins performing for the public at the holiday tree lighting ceremony on Thursday, November 30, during Clematis by Night.
Sandi’s story will unfold a little more this season. During the tree lighting, Sandi will reveal a “big” part of her personality. Since leaving her waterfront home less than a year ago, Sandi has fallen in love – and has added to her family! Sandi can’t wait to introduce her new love to West Palm Beach – and like everything Sandi does, the newest chapter in her story will be as big as they come.
Recently, the world famous holiday tree took a few moments out of her incredibly busy schedule to let us know a bit more about what makes Sandi what she is!
What is your favorite holiday? Thanksgiving. I’m sculpted to my full fabulous perfection and my lighting crew is putting on the dazzling final touches. Meanwhile, I’m practicing all of my spectacular moves for my debut at the Clematis by Night Tree Lighting
You are known for your unique fashion sense. What is your inspiration? My girlfriends!!!! Hundreds of fashionable female friends give me tips all year long on my @sanditree twitter. Real trees have curves and I’m proud of mine!
What’s your favorite color? Hmmm. So many hues shine on me every night. Such a tough decision…not! Pink, definitely HOT pink!
Mini-golf has become a major attraction in Sandi Land. What’s your handicap? I’m perfect, par for the course.
Of all the Christmas movies out there, which one is your favorite? Elf. I laugh so hard I almost lose a few tons
When you aren’t strutting your stuff on Clematis, how do you spend the rest of the year? Work one month, vacation for eleven. I travel to tropical destinations around the world hoping to make regular holiday trees jealous
Which Christmas carol makes your season happy and bright? All I want for Christmas is you Mariah is my girl. Definitely Team Sandi!
What’s your favorite reindeer game? Trivia! I’m one smart cookie. In fact you will want me on your team when I host Reindeer Trivia Night in Sandi Land on Dec 19th.
Are you and Frosty the Snowman close? Very, I created SnowieVille in Sandi Land so he could get his South Florida style going. He still needs to learn how to keep his curves in our hot sun, though!
What’s the first thing on your Christmas list? Bringing holiday joy and laughs to everyone from my sandy domain on the West Palm Beach Waterfront.
“This is surely one of our most favorite times of the year,” said Mary Pinak, Community Events Manager for the City of West Palm Beach Department of Parks and Recreation. “Sandi’s energy, sassy personality – and the love she gets back from the community – are truly magnetic. People of all ages, from near and far, look forward to her return and to the next chapter in her story. We are especially excited about this year’s theme, which will reveal much more about Sandi’s character. Is she bringing home a sandman? A mini-Sandi tree? Something with feathers? Something with fur? All will unfold throughout November, leading up to the big reveal during the tree lighting.”
Since making her grand entrance in 2012, Sandi has received numerous international and regional awards and accolades, including being named “Best New Event” and “Best Event within an Existing Festival” by the International Festivals and Events Association; and “Most Innovative Project” by the Florida Festivals and Events Association. Sandi has been featured in The Huffington Post, on CNN and The Ellen Show and even has her very own, and wildly popular, Twitter account – @Sanditreewpb.
Sandi’s seasonal supporting cast of activities includes additional sand sculptures in Sandi Land and a backstage peek into Sandi’s “dressing room,” “Glow FORE It” mini golf, “Reindeer Games” Trivia Night, and kids and adults of all ages can enjoy additional holiday cheer by creating their own Florida-style snowman in SnowieVille. Plus, more than a dozen of West Palm Beach’s favorite – and free – weekly and monthly City events will celebrate Sandi, the star of Holiday in Paradise.
In addition, Visit Palm Beach’s Waterfront Activity Station, located on the West Palm Beach Waterfront, is offering on-and-off the water activities, including nightly catamaran cruises on the Hakuna Matata from December 1 – 31 from 5 – 6:30 p.m. – complete with hot chocolate, eggnog and holiday cheer; 90-minute walking and biking sightseeing tours through downtown, promising lights and sights on Thursdays at 5:30 p.m.; Discover WPB Art bike tours every Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday at 9 a.m. and daily watersport rentals, including kayaking and paddle boarding – proof that sand is really better than snow. For more information on these events, please call 561-881-9757 or visit www.VisitPalmBeach.com.
For more information about Sandi Land, and other Waterfront events, visit wpb.org/events, call 561-822-1515 or follow the City of West Palm Beach on Facebook @CityofWPB and on Twitter and Instagram @westpalmbch.
****** HOLIDAY IN PARADISE/SANDI LAND SCHEDULE OF EVENTS ******
Monday, November 13 – Wednesday, November 22
Adding a tropical twist to the holiday season, The City of West Palm Beach has created the world’s only 35-ft-tall tree made of 600-tons of sand. Affectionately named “Sandi,” the famed tree is strung with more than 5,000 real lights and is meticulously sculpted over two weeks by Team Sandtastic, a world-renowned group of sand sculptors. Guests exploring the Waterfront – Sandi’s seasonal waterfront home – can go behind the scenes and watch Team Sandtastic beginning Monday, November 13 through Wednesday, November 22. The intricate sculpting and preparation of a synchronized light show all lead up to the City of West Palm Beach’s Holiday Tree Lighting on Thursday, November 30 during Clematis by Night.
Holiday in Paradise On-going Sandi Land Activities
December 1, 2017 – December 31, 2017
Monday – Friday, 6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Saturdays & Sundays, Noon – 10:00 p.m.
West Palm Beach Waterfront
- Glow FORE It Mini Golf
Players can tee it up along the scenic Intracoastal Waterway with 9-holes of glow-in-the-dark mini golf. Competitors can putt around during the day on Saturday and Sunday, or wait until the course lights up at night with neon balls, holes and clubs. Open Monday – Friday from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday noon to 10:00 p.m. Cost: $2.50 per person, per round, Thursday – Sunday. As a holiday gift, the City, in partnership with three local hospitals – JFK Medical Center Main Campus, JFK Medical Center North Campus and Palms West Hospital – will be offering mini golf for free Monday – Wednesday.
Families can create their own life-size tropical snowman with fun mix-and-match pieces. Guests can also take a seasonal selfie and share their tropical snowman with friends up north. Open Monday – Friday from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday noon to 10:00 p.m. Free.
- Sandi’s Dressing Room
Sandi’s Dressing Room is a behind-the-scenes look into the glamourous world of “Sandi,” the star of Holiday in Paradise. Guests can step into her decked-out celebrity dressing room for fun photos and see everything it takes to make Sandi a seasonal sensation. Sandi’s new love will also have some accessories on display. Open Monday – Sunday 10 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Free.
Holiday in Paradise Clematis by Night Schedule
Thursdays; 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. FREE **please note, there is no Clematis by Night on December 28**
West Palm Beach Waterfront
Dubbed the “Hot Spot to Chill” for more than 20 years, Clematis by Night is a free weekly outdoor concert series. The series features live performances by national, regional and local bands, delicious food, chilled drinks and an unmatched ambiance for guests of all ages and interests. Check out the weekly schedule below. Bring your family and friends or meet new ones on the West Palm Beach Waterfront.
- November 30 – West Palm Beach Holiday Tree Lighting at Clematis by Night featuring a variety of entertainment. Special hours from 6:00 – 9:30 p.m.
- 6:00 p.m. – Valerie Tyson Band (R&B/Top 40/Variety) www.valerietysonband.com
- Valerie Tyson Band is a soulful and electrifying band, performing classic and modern music. The band specializes in today’s Top 40 hits, jazz, classic rock, R&B, and reggae. Known to keep the party rocking and the dance floor packed, the Valerie Tyson Band will set the stage for the “big” reveal.
- 7:00 p.m. – Lighting of Sandi, the World’s Only 600-ton Sand Holiday Tree and debut of her new love.
- 8:00 p.m. – Chemradery (Pop-Rock/Soul) www.chemradery.com Chemradery. It’s not a word in the English dictionary, but it might very well make it there if this band has anything to say about it. Led by vocalist Gregory Scot Dyer, and guitarist Ivan Alexander, Chemradery came about when two innovative minds merged their passion for music to create a sound that would not only inspire, but leave a lasting impression; on themselves and the listener. Melodic verses and choruses; simplistic, yet memorable lyrics about the positives and negatives of everyday life, and tasteful instrumentation that tie it all together. The fellowship, interaction, and common bond of everyday people, whose sole purpose is to tell a story through their music; a story that you can’t stop reading. That is Chemradery.
- Special events throughout the evening include:
- A Cappella performances by Generation Gap: four guys and one doll, who harmonize hits from yesterday
- Non-stop family fun in SnowieVille, including special seasonal kickoff activities such as face painting, a visit from Elsa, star of the movie “Frozen,” and even the Grinch. In addition, Santa and Mrs. Claus will also make a special appearance!
- Guests can also shop for one-of-a-kind gifts and treasures in the Holiday Gift Boutique, located in the Lake Pavilion.
- December 7 – Jason K & Signal Fire (Rock)
Jason K and Signal Fire is an exciting and dynamic project conceived out of five other top local bands. Grown tired of the typical guitar-bass-drum format, the band added a killer keyboardist and challenged themselves to bring that big concert feeling to favorite local venues. Jason K & Signal Fire performs cover songs with expert precision, and brings them to the stage with an energy and sonic dynamic that is unmatched. In addition, the band performs its very own compositions, which rival any of the covers in their set!
- December 14 – Business As Usual (Dance/Variety/Pop)
Business As Usual “BAU”, South Florida’s hottest dance party band, plays top-40 music heard over the airwaves.
Attendees will be up and dancing to a wide variety of classic tunes that everyone loves, including pop, rock, disco and R&B. From the ‘60s to the 2000s, “BAU” will keep guests entertained all night long to the music that was and still is the soundtrack of their life.
- December 21 – The Chris Thomas Band (Big Band/Jazz/Soul)
The Chris Thomas Band specializes in the performance of vintage Sinatra and soulful Motown, in addition to current popular songs and holiday favorites, too. Band lead Chris Thomas is an exciting entertainer fashioned in the way of the great performers of years gone by. The Chris Thomas Band is bringing that music back, bigger and better than ever before, to audiences all over the world.
- December 28: No Clematis by Night – Happy Holidays!
Sandi takes center stage for all night music and light shows! Guests are also invited to visit Sandi’s dressing room for a behind the scenes look at the most favorite and famous holiday gal, play a round of Glow FORE it Mini Golf, and join the kids in SnowieVille to make a tropical snowman.
Screen on the Green, featuring an appearance by Santa Claus and the annual “Present Parade”
Friday, December 8 starting at 6:00 p.m.
FREE at the West Palm Beach Waterfront
- While the weather outside is delightful, not frightful, still bring your blanket for a snuggle under the stars during the City of West Palm Beach’s monthly Screen on the Green! The only thing freezing will be the City’s festive selection – “Frozen” – which will leave movie goers singing “Let it Go” instead of “Let it Snow” – an appropriate fit for South Florida. The feature film begins at 6:30 p.m. and as a special gift the City will also be showing “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” beginning at 8:30 p.m.
- For more gifts that keeping on giving, there will also be a special appearance by Santa Claus, from 6 – 8:30 p.m. and the City’s famed “Present Parade” – where children turn into walking presents by decorating cardboard boxes with wrapping paper and ribbon. The parade starts at 8:00 p.m. and takes place around Sandi, the holiday sand tree.
- Full schedule of events:
- 6:00 p.m. – Kids’ activities and Rhythm & Hues Children’s “Present Parade” decorating stations opens. Families are encouraged to arrive earlier and kickoff the festive evening with holiday-themed activities, including by decorating a cardboard box with wrapping paper and ribbon for the annual “Present Parade.”
- 6:00 p.m. – Special Santa sightings are in store for the winter edition of Screen on the Green. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be on site from 6:00 – 8:30 p.m.
- 6:30 p.m. Frozen Movie (PG) – When their kingdom becomes trapped in perpetual winter, fearless Anna (Kristen Bell) joins forces with mountaineer Kristoff (Jonathan Groff) and his reindeer sidekick to find Anna’s sister, Snow Queen Elsa (Idina Menzel), and break her icy spell. Although their epic journey leads them to encounters with mystical trolls, a comedic snowman (Josh Gad), harsh conditions, and magic at every turn, Anna and Kristoff bravely push onward in a race to save their kingdom from winter’s cold grip.
- 8:00 p.m. – Rhythm & Hues “Present Parade” begins and goes around Sandi, the star of Holiday in Paradise.
- 8:30 p.m. Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) Movie (PG) – In this live-action adaptation of the beloved children’s tale by Dr. Seuss, the reclusive green Grinch (Jim Carrey) decides to ruin Christmas for the cheery citizens of Whoville. Reluctantly joined by his hapless dog, Max, the Grinch comes down from his mountaintop home and sneaks into town to swipe everything holiday-related from the Whos. However, the bitter grump finds a hitch in his plans when he encounters the endearing Cindy Lou Who (Taylor Momsen).
West Palm Beach GreenMarket
Every Saturday; 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. FREE
West Palm Beach Waterfront
The West Palm Beach GreenMarket is the area’s first and premier green market located on the scenic West Palm Beach Waterfront. Visitors can find unique holiday gifts while shopping at more than 90 vendors, featuring the freshest and most unique offerings, including local produce, plants, exotic flowers, herbs, baked goods, gourmet foods, teas, coffee, specialty pet products and much more. The GreenMarket also features live music, free activities for kids – and extra holiday cheer for the Sandi Land season, plus plentiful green space and seating for a morning of fun and relaxation.
Special GreenMarket activities during December include:
- Sandi Paws – Saturday, December 2 and Saturday, December 9 – You might have heard of Santa Claus, but have you heard of Sandi Paws? A new charity element to the more than month-long Holiday in Paradise celebration, this year Sandi will be debuting “Sandi Paws,” placing a focus on pets. In partnership with several local animal rescue organizations, including Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League and Big Dog Ranch Rescue, Sandi will celebrate the season and give holiday cheer to pets, too. On two Saturdays in December, guests can adopt a furry friend on-site at the GreenMarket. Word on the street is that cats and dogs will be “ho, ho, home” for the holidays.
- Historical Walking Tour (at 10:00 a.m. “By the Banyan”) – Saturday, December 2, and Saturday, December 16 – Due to popular demand last season, historical walking tours are back with regularity. The tours will begin “By the Banyan” at 10 a.m., will last approximately an hour-and-a-half, and end at the Johnson History Museum. They will be amplified this year, to accommodate for larger groups, and will be led by architect and historian Rick Gonzalez. The cost is $10 per person and require a minimum of 10 reservations. Visitors can learn more and purchase tickets by visiting www.hspbc.org/events/#historytours or calling 561.832.4164 ext. 2. Proceeds benefit the Historical Society of Palm Beach County.
- Holiday Booth Decorating Contest – Saturday, December 16 and Saturday, December 23 – In the spirit of the season, all vendors – more than 90 this year – will be encouraged to decorate their booths and compete for first place in the annual Holiday Booth Decorating Contest. In order to cheer on their favorites, visitors will need to show up and vote.
The Palm Beach Post Sunday on the Waterfront: Aloha Islanders Holiday Spectacular
Sunday, December 17; 4:00 – 7:00 p.m.
West Palm Beach Waterfront – Palm Stage (by Sandi)
- Aloha Islanders Hawaiian Entertainment was established in 1999 and is now the premiere Polynesian entertainment company in South Florida. The vibrant, high-energy and authentic Polynesian show is popular with guests of all ages, and is consistently the most popular The Palm Beach Post Sunday on the Waterfront show annually. Families from all over travel to downtown West Palm Beach for this annual, tropical holiday tradition, where the Islanders take the audience on a journey through Polynesia using pulsating drums, beautiful hula dancers and exciting Samoan fire knife dancers to make guests feel truly transported. The show is an action packed non-stop revue of dances from Hawaii, Tahiti, Samoa and New Zealand. Sit back, relax and enjoy this journey through Polynesia. ALOHA!
- A highlight – and a do-not-miss of the show – is the “Big Kahuna” – where one lucky male fan is pulled on stage and dressed in traditional hula garb, including a coconut bikini top and traditional grass hula skirt!
- In addition, guests can participate in a Conch Blowing Contest, where the City awards prizes – and anyone from the audience can participate (with advanced registration required on-site). The Aloha Islanders men give a conch blowing demonstration prior to the contest to help the contestants learn – and then they put their skills to the test!
Reindeer Games Trivia Night
Tuesday, December 19; 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
- Calling all trivia champs… the City of West Palm Beach is inviting the public to test their knowledge and enjoy a fun-filled evening of holiday-themed trivia down on the Waterfront. Trivia starts at 7:00 p.m. and the City will offer prizes to the trivia champs!
Final Sandi sighting – New Year’s Eve day and night
Sunday, December 31; all day and night
- Sandi Land fans are encouraged to see Sandi off on New Year’s Eve, the last day and night she and her new love will be stationed on the Waterfront. Guests will be able to enjoy all activities until 10 p.m. and light shows until 12 midnight before welcoming in 2018!
******* OTHER CITY HOLIDAY IN PARADISE EVENTS AROUND TOWN ******
Sandi shares the limelight with unique holiday happenings in downtown West Palm Beach, Northwood Village and the Historic Northwest District.
The Northwood Village Funky Holiday Tree Lighting features the illumination of an artistic holiday tree made completely from wood at 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 2nd. During the event, a children’s choir from St. Ann Catholic School will perform. There will also be a Christmas tree lot to benefit The Hurricane Relief Fund and toy drive for the children of St. Mary’s Medical Center. Slated for Friday, December 29, Art Night Out will unveil the second installment of the ART SQUARE exhibit by artist Amy Allison. Enjoy music performances by local artists, craft vendors from all over South Florida, unique boutiques, restaurants and galleries.
The Historic Northwest District will be a Winter in Paradise with a flurry of free, fun activities including cookie and ornament decorating, live performances from U.B. Kinsey/Palmview Elementary School of the Arts and tasty holiday treats. This free community event takes place in the park across from the Sunset Lounge between on Friday, December 8 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. with the tree lighting at 6:30 p.m. sharp. The Sunset is the site for the Holiday Soiree @ the Sunset Lounge on December 21 from 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. Guests are invited to this famed location for a festive, free R&B concert and delicacies from Trindy Gourmet.
Sandi Land Holiday in Paradise Sponsors-to-date Include: JFK Medical Center Main Campus, JFK Medical Center North Campus and Palms West Hospital, Discover the Palm Beaches, Community Redevelopment Agency of West Palm Beach, The Palm Beach Post, Palm Beach Daily News, 97.9 WRMF, SUNNY 107.9, 103.1 WIRK, X 102.3, Beatz 96.3, News Talk 850 WFTL, 640 Hurricane Sports Radio, Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League, Rhythm and Hues, West Palm Beach Marriott, WPBF News 25, Schumacher Automotive, Palm Beach Outlets, CityPlace, Palm Beach Medical and Vital Health Chiropractic.
Partners-to-date include: West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority, West Palm Beach Arts & Entertainment District, Visit Palm Beach, Northwood Village, Northwood Village Main Street, Historic Northwest Neighborhood and the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County.
About the City of West Palm Beach Community Events Division
Recipient of more than 275 international, national and regional awards for innovative programming, the City’s Community Events Division is responsible for every detail for hundreds of events in West Palm Beach each year. Award-winning events include the weekly concert series, Clematis by Night, the popular GreenMarket, Sunday on the Waterfront, Screen on the Green, Sandi Land as part of Holiday in Paradise and 4th on Flagler as part of Summer in Paradise. The Division is also responsible for scheduling and coordinating nearly 100 events produced by outside promoters. For more information about events and programs in West Palm Beach, please visit www.wpb.org/events.