December 2021
Join us in welcoming the City's new 40' holiday tree, nicknamed "Herald." The official tree lighting will take place on Saturday, December 4, at 6 p.m.
December is now here and with that brings reflection on this past year and excitement for the holidays ahead. Throughout 2021, your City of Murrieta team has adapted to ever-changing safety measures, created engaging events and programs, supported our businesses, and continued to connect in meaningful ways with the community. I am reminded of how resilient Murrieta is and I am certain that we will continue to thrive no matter what 2022 brings our way.

But before the new year begins, we will be busy, and this edition of More Murrieta is packed with important holiday safety information, new services for residents and businesses, and lots of holiday magic you won't want to miss, including the following:

  • Murrieta's Festival of Trees & Tree Lighting
  • Donuts with Santa and Bark-in-the-Park events
  • 2021 redistricting map considered for final approval
  • Tips to stay safe this holiday season from Murrieta Fire and Rescue
  • Murrieta PD shares about keeping your items safe during the holidays
  • Shop Small Murrieta campaign supports shopping local during the holidays
  • Notary services now offered at City Hall
  • And much more!

If you are celebrating this month, I wish you joyous days and moments to cherish in the years to come. It is my hope that this season brings us together and continues to strengthen the incredible community spirit that is so strong here in Murrieta. We really are Connected by Community.

May your days be merry and bright,
Kim Summers, City Manager
2021 Festival of Trees and Tree Lighting

On Saturday, December 4, the City’s Festival of Trees and Tree Lighting event will take place at Town Square Park from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. This is a fun, FREE, family event with vendors, beautiful tree displays, music, crafts, games, and activities, as well as an opportunity for a photo with Santa. The lighting of the City’s official holiday tree will take place at 6 p.m. The announcement for the best decorated trees will take place shortly after the tree lighting.

Please contact staff at (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information or visit our special events website at
Join the City for Donuts with Santa at Three Murrieta Locations

Donuts with Santa will take place on Saturday, December 4, from 9 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. at Copper Canyon Park (23790 Via Alisol), Town Square Park (1Town Square), and Alderwood Park (28610 Baxter Road). Santa, holiday characters, and other entertainment will be on hand. This FREE event is generously sponsored by three local real estate firms: Ennoble, TWG, and Cochren Realty. The event at Alderwood Park will also offer some holiday activities and treats for our four-legged fur companions at a “Bark-in-the-Park” event during the same timeframe. While there is no fee to participate, we ask for a donation of one non-perishable food item that will go toward the City’s holiday toy & food drive efforts. Please contact staff at (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information or visit our website at  
Firefighter Pierce Returns to Duty December 1

We have received official communications from the North Pole that Pierce the Elf will be returning for another holiday assignment with Murrieta Fire & Rescue. Firefighter Pierce is due to report for duty on December 1, and will officially be on duty 24/7 from December 1-24. We will document his daily duties, activities, and possibly a few shenanigans every night at 5 p.m. on social media. Show Pierce a little love and remember to click, follow, and share his posts.

Follow along on Instagram and Facebook.
2021 Redistricting Process Nears Completion

On November 16, Murrieta City Council held a public hearing regarding the redistricting process in order to introduce Ordinance 568-21, which would adopt the district boundaries outlined in Draft Map B. This map was posted on the City’s redistricting webpage ( and made available for public review at City Hall on October 29.
The next public hearing of the redistricting process will be on December 7 at 6:45 p.m. to receive input and adopt Ordinance 568-21. A copy of the full text of the ordinance is available at the City Clerk’s Office at Murrieta City Hall (1 Town Square) or by emailing
Murrieta Fire Wishes Everyone a Festive and Safe Holiday Season

Did you know that home fires peak during the holidays? Murrieta Fire & Rescue encourages residents to practice safe cooking and decorating now and throughout the year. While you plan your holiday menus and décor, also plan for fire safety.
Here are a few tips to follow to make sure this holiday season is filled with good food and safe homes:

  • Candles cause more than 1/3 of home decoration fires. Keep candles at least 12" away from anything that burns.
  • Battery-operated flameless candles are a great option, especially if you have pets or children in your household.
  • When you begin decorating, check your smoke alarms and make sure they are working.
  • Stay home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently. If you leave the kitchen, set a timer to remind yourself food is simmering or baking.
  • Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the stove.
  • Keep pan/pot handles turned toward the back of the stove.
  • Risks to consider when using a turkey fryer:
  • Turkey fryers can easily tip over, spilling hot oil across a large area.
  • Place the fryer outside on a flat surface that cannot burn, such as cement.
  • An overfilled cooking pot will cause oil to spill over when the turkey is placed inside. You can test the level of oil needed by filling the pot with water first and dipping the turkey inside to see how much the water rises.
  • A partially frozen turkey will cause hot oil to splatter. Make sure you thaw the turkey completely before placing in fryer.
  • The pot, lid, and handles of a turkey fryer can get dangerously hot and cause burn injuries.
  • Place the fryer at least 10 feet from anything that can catch fire. This includes anything overhead like your house eaves or branches.
  • Use a fryer with thermostat controls. Without these, the oil can heat to the point of catching fire.

Murrieta Fire & Rescue encourages everyone to make safety a priority in the kitchen at Thanksgiving and all year long. Happy Thanksgiving!
Holiday Safety Tips from Murrieta PD

The Murrieta Police Department wants to ensure that the community enjoys a fun and safe holiday season. Here are tips to stay safe at home and while out and about shopping in the community.

If you plan on traveling:
  • Don't post on social media about traveling out of town. Thieves will know you are not home.
  • Set your alarm if you have one.
  • Have a friend or neighbor keep an eye on your home while you're away. This includes picking up mail and newspapers and bringing in trash cans.
  • Put your lights and TV on a timer or use an app to schedule them to turn on when someone would typically be home.
  • Disable your garage door opener emergency release and lock the garage door.

At home:
  • Request a signature for packages if possible.
  • Ask a neighbor to bring packages inside if you won't be home when something will be delivered.
  • Have items delivered to your work if possible.
  • Request in-store pick up if available.
  • Have items delivered to a PO box or U.S. Post Office location if you can.

When shopping:
  • Never leave your purse or wallet unattended.
  • Save receipts and use one or two debit/credit cards so you can track purchases (and check for fraud) easily.
  • Lock car doors.
  • Don't leave shopping bags in view inside your vehicle.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.

If you suspect something suspicious, whether at home or while out in the Murrieta community, don't hesitate to call Murrieta PD at (951) 696-3615.
Shop Small Murrieta Effort Supports Local Businesses During Holiday Season

Shopping local has big rewards and the City of Murrieta and the Murrieta/Wildomar Chamber of Commerce have launched a #ShopSmallMurrieta campaign to encourage residents to shop local this holiday season.
The City went out to a variety of local businesses to capture the video above and highlight that holiday shopping can mean shopping at stores, for services, or experiences. Do you want to support your favorite local businesses? Take a photo while you are out shopping and post it with the hashtag #ShopSmallMurrieta and tag both the City of Murrieta and the Chamber in your posts on Facebook or Instagram and we will share, multiplying the local business love.
“The City of Murrieta is proud to be an advocate for our small businesses so they can continue to strengthen our community. Each one of us can make a difference this holiday season. Let’s shop small, Murrieta!” emphasized Scott Agajanian, Murrieta’s Deputy Director of Economic Development.
Small businesses across the United States are a driving force in the national economy and were responsible for a total of 65% of new jobs from 2000 to 2019 according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. In Murrieta, there are more than 5,000 small businesses that create jobs, boost our local economy, and preserve our community’s feel. 
During the pandemic, most small business owners had to adjust the way they did business to stay open. Many of them used social media to connect with the community and encourage them to shop local. The City of Murrieta and Murrieta/Wildomar Chamber of Commerce encourage the community to demonstrate their support for Murrieta businesses during this holiday season and spread the word through their social media posts. It’s a simple way to show your support and is a no-cost marketing tool for local businesses.
“Supporting the small businesses in our community is crucial, especially with everything small business owners have had to endure in the past 20 months. This holiday season we want to remind shoppers that when they choose to shop small, they make a big impact on our local business community,” shared Patrick Ellis, President/CEO of the Murrieta/Wildomar Chamber of Commerce.

For the latest business news and resources, visit the City's Economic Development website at
Library Offers Unique Items for Check Out, Free Programs for All Ages, and Wishes Everyone a Happy and Safe Holiday Season

The Murrieta Public Library is excited to offer new and unique items for check out at our recently created “Library of Things.” In addition to musical instruments that we have been offering for several years, patrons can now check out a variety of objects, such as an LED projector, Nook eReaders, Roku 2 players, Playstation Classic, and more! These items can be checked out and returned to the Adult Reference Desk.
The Children’s Services Department will host a STEAM event on December 9 at 4 p.m. Attendees can create a light-up holiday tree or gingerbread friend, with additional preschool-age crafts available for younger children.

The week of December 6, the Adult Services Department will be offering a Holiday Pine Cone Ornament Craft Kit. This two-ornament kit is a family craft. They will be handed out at the Adult Reference Desk while supplies last.
The Library will be closed to the public from Friday, December 24, through Sunday, January 2. From all of us at the Murrieta Public Library, we wish you and yours a safe and joyous holiday season and a prosperous and peaceful new year!
To stay current with what’s happening at the Murrieta Public Library and have a chance to win a prize every month, sign up for the Library’s monthly newsletter. Please visit to sign up. As always, the staff is available to answer questions via phone Monday through Saturday during regular hours by calling (951) 304-BOOK
City Updates Slurry Seal Website Weekly Highlighting Upcoming Slurry Seal Work

The 2021 slurry seal program is in full swing! The City of Murrieta Public Works team began the 2021 project in October and by the finish of this year's work, it will have made a positive impact on over 10 million square feet of local roads. So far, we have received a great response from Murrieta residents.

The Murrieta Streets webpage is updated weekly with the upcoming slurry seal schedule. If you'd like to know more about the project and whether your residential street will be done this year, visit the Murrieta Streets webpage at It is updated with scheduling information weekly.

If your street isn't completed this year and wasn't completed in the previous cycle either, the next phase of the project will begin in October 2023. The goal is to complete slurry seal projects every two years so that all City-maintained local roads receive slurry every six to eight years.

If you have any questions, please contact Project Manager Brian Crawford at (951) 461-6047.
Bringing Holiday Magic to the Community this Month!

Letters from Santa
This year, parents will be able to download letters from Santa to print out in the comfort of their home. Simply go to the City’s website at to view the letter options. Letters will be available for download starting Wednesday, December 1. In addition, call the Santa Hotline (951) 461-6086 to get a special message from the big guy himself!
Holiday Magic Showing of "Elf"
Don’t be a cotton-headed, ninny muggins! Join us on Sunday, December 5, for the FREE movie-in-the-park showing of "Elf" at Town Square Park (1 Town Square). Showtime is at 6 p.m., but come early to visit the vendors, complete a craft, or play some games. Remember to bring your chairs and blankets and dress warm…PJs or Buddy the Elf attire are encouraged! Please contact staff at (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information or visit our website at

Holiday Home Decorating Contest
Register your home or block for the Murrieta holiday home decorating contest by visiting City’s website at Enter by 4 p.m. December 5. Maps of homes will be available on the website by 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, December 8, along with a survey for you to vote for your favorites. Winners will be announced and posted once the votes are tallied. Entries must be located within the Murrieta city limits. Please contact staff at (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information or visit the City's website at
Holiday Toy and Food Drive
These past eighteen months have been tough…for some more than others. The City of Murrieta would like to provide an opportunity for the community to come together and provide new, unwrapped and non-perishable items through its annual Toy and Food Drive. The Parks and Recreation Department will be on hand to take your donations drive-thru style on Saturday, December 18, 2021 between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Community Center, 41810 Juniper Street. Place your donated items in your vehicle’s trunk and enter the parking lot on Juniper Street across from Fire Station #1. Pop your trunk when you stop at the donation point and staff will collect the items. All donated items will go to local food pantries and families in need for distribution to the Murrieta community. Please contact staff at (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information or visit our website at
Alternative Recreation Program
The City’s Alternative Recreation Program offers activities for special needs adults 18 years and older. The highlight event for December is their “Snow Much Fun!” party on Friday, December 10, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Community Center multi-purpose room. The cost for participants is $2 and caregivers are free. Please bring a $10 gift card from your favorite restaurant or store to exchange in the “gift card game.” Contact staff at (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information.
Lights for Life Run/Walk
The Murrieta Police Department and Lights for Life (Project 99) have partnered to co-host a 5K run/walk to raise awareness about the negative consequences of teen suicide. The race is scheduled to take place in and around Town Square Park on Saturday, December 11. Additional information is available on their website at
Holiday Hours
The Community Center, Senior Center, and Youth Center will be closed from Friday, December 24, 2021, through Sunday, January 2, 2022, reopening Monday, January 3, 2022. Opening times vary. Please call (951) 304-PARK (7275) for additional information. 
City Hall Now Offers Notary Services

Beginning this month, Murrieta residents and businesses are able to have their items notarized conveniently at City Hall. The cost is $10 per signature.

Please call City Hall at (951) 304-CITY (2489) to schedule an appointment.
City Partners to Host Blood Drive on December 8

Did you know that every two seconds someone is in need of a blood donation?

To help with our community blood stores, Assemblymember Kelly Seyarto is partnering with the City of Murrieta and the American Red Cross for a blood drive.

It will take place at Alderwood Park Clubhouse (28610 Baxter Road) on December 8 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. To sign up to donate, please click here.
City Hall Closing December 24 - December 31

In order to allow for time off, City Hall will be closed to the public from Friday, December 24, through Friday, December 31. Many staff will still be working and a variety of services are still available on our website at

We appreciate the community's understanding and look forward to serving everyone as 2021 comes to an end and in the new year to come!
Through June 30, 2022, we will be honoring 30 years of cityhood with weekly #throwbackthursday posts and a growing collection of photos and stories at

Check in often for a trip down memory lane.
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