Craig Smith

Craig Smith is the executive director of the Downtown Napa Association.

J.L. Sousa/Register

Just a reminder that Saturday is the day. Gather your ghosts and goblins and head to downtown Napa, from noon to 3 p.m. If you see black and orange balloons in front of a store, consider it a personal invitation to come in and beg for a treat.

The merchants are a friendly lot – not a lot of begging will be necessary. Also, the photo opportunities that the Bank of Napa staff is preparing will delight everyone. Even if you don’t have kids, come on down and check out the costumed ones, and say hello to the bank staff.

Ho, Ho, Ho?

Yes, it seems early to be talking about the Christmas parade, but some Napans build amazingly elaborate floats and need the time to prepare. This year’s parade is Saturday, Nov. 28 at 5 p.m., rain or shine. The theme is “Have a Holly Jolly Christmas,” which should give float creators a lot to work with. If you’d like an application, visit, call me or send an email.

Speaking of Christmas

Napa Valley Traditions, at the corner of Main and Pearl, makes a very big deal out of the season. An entire room, about a third of the store, will open tomorrow as the holiday room and features everything from tree and home decorations and ornaments, to great gifts.

Owner Cheryl Richburg said that Traditions has been doing this for more than 20 years, and she loves it. “Christmas has always been my favorite holiday, and being able to do this makes it that much more fun.”

The Traditions holiday room includes areas with reoccurring themes, such as woodland, Santa, peppermint, nativity and wine accessories. You can buy everything you need at once, or build on a collection over the years, taking advantage of new products that Richburg orders every season.

A new theme is featured each year, and this time it’s about table-top trees, from classic to contemporary designs, and from six inches to four feet in height. If for no other reason, walk through the holiday room just to get your seasonal spirit flowing.

And Saturday only, Traditions is featuring a pre-Christmas sale, with some items 50 to 75 percent off. All Halloween items are 50 percent off Saturday and Sunday. That is Saturday only though, and strictly between us.

Traditions opens at 7:30 a.m. Monday through Friday, at which time you can purchase one of Chuck’s (Richburg’s brother) famous muffins and a cup of coffee or tea as you browse. Saturday and Sunday opening at 10 a.m.

Shop in your pajamas

Or wear whatever you want. You can now visit Napa Bookmine online, and order new books to be delivered or that you can pick up at the store, at 964 Pearl St. Look for online used book shopping, coming soon. You can also shop in person daily. Clothes are highly recommended if you do.

See you downtown!

Craig Smith is the executive director of the Downtown Napa Association. Reach him at 257-0322 or


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