For several years, residents in the Seaside Ranchos neighborhood in Torrance have elaborately decorated their homes for the holidays. The annual neighborhood coordinated light display in the Seaside Ranchos area of Torrance is not a city-sponsored nor a city-sanctioned event. The decision to do, or not to do, these displays is entirely upon each of the homeowners and the City is not in any way involved in that decision-making process. Over the years, this neighborhood event has attracted large crowds and has created potential safety hazards. Although not a City event, the City of Torrance does have an obligation to address public safety concerns. This page is meant to answer questions for both residents and visitors related to the Seaside Holiday Lights Display.
Residents and Visitors: Please be aware that on November 27, 2019, City Staff will be implementing the following health and safety measures as directed by City Council:
- Place 20 additional trash bins for the 2019 Seaside Ranchos Holiday Lights Display. The trash bins will be marked as "Holiday" bins and will be emptied on Mondays and Thursdays throughout the display period. Please be respectful of the Seaside Ranchos Neighborhood and please place all waste in trash bins.
- Place approximately 60 waterproof temporary NO STOPPING signs along the streets as shown below in the Parking Restriction map. The signs will read as follows:
TEMPORARY NO STOPPING
Dates - 11/29/19 thru 1/1/20
Time - 5 P.M. to 10 P.M.
City of Torrance Public Works Department
- For traffic control purposes, two illuminated message boards will be placed on Pacific Coast Highway to inform visitors that traffic delays are expected ahead. The message boards will be placed at PCH and Robert Road for eastbound traffic and at PCH prior to Calle Mayor for westbound traffic.
2019 Seaside Ranchos Neighborhood - Parking Restrictions
There are temporary NO STOPPING signs placed on some residential streets from 5:00-10:00pm for the duration of the Holiday Lights Display. No stopping or parking will be allowed where these signs are posted. This is for safety reasons, to ensure that emergency vehicles may access the neighborhood, if needed. The dark black line in the map above indicates where parking will be restricted for the 2019 season.
Holiday Lights FAQs
Is the holiday light display a City event?
No. The annual neighborhood coordinated light display in the Seaside Ranchos area of Torrance is not a city-sponsored nor a city-sanctioned event. The City has no role in coordinating or planning this resident-led event. The decision to do, or not to do, these displays is entirely upon each of the homeowners and the City is not in any way involved in that decision-making process. The City has no role in coordinating or planning the displays, including when the dates and times that the lights are turned on/off. Also, the City cannot shut down or prevent the light display from occurring.
What has the City done to reduce traffic congestion and improve public safety?
On August 13, 2019, the Torrance City Council approved the following measures for the 2019 holiday season:
- Take traffic counts before and during the 2019 Seaside Ranchos Holiday Lights Display.The results will be shared when Staff updates City Council on this matter, in the first quarter of 2020.
- Place temporary “No Stopping” signs on one side of the street in the Seaside Ranchos neighborhood all season during the holiday lights display from 5:00pm-10:00pm to allow for emergency vehicle access.
- Provide twenty (20) additional trash bins for the 2019 display, and to coordinate additional sanitation pick-ups as needed.
- Provide two (2) illuminated light boards to assist with traffic control and inform visitors of parking restrictions.
- Place permanent Stop Signs at busy intersection(s) to help appease traffic congestion.
- Return to City Council in the first quarter of 2020 to report on the 2019 display.
- Create informative webpage to be added to the City of Torrance website.
Please note that presently, one-time funds are available in the Public Works Operating Budget. On-going funding will require budget action as part of the Fiscal Year 2020-2021 budget process.
Are there restroom facilities available during the holiday lights display?
No. The holiday light display is not a city-sponsored nor city-sanctioned event. The City has no authority to regulate whether the event occurs or not. The City does not pay for or provide this type of amenity for a non-city sponsored/sanctioned event.
What permits do I need if I am a homeowner in the Seaside Ranchos neighborhood and wish to sell food items from my home during the Holiday Lights Display?
Please read this entire page carefully before determining which permits you should apply for. There are three permits that pertain to selling food from your home. Two permits are issued by the City of Torrance and one permit is issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (“County”). The two permits issued by the City of Torrance are (1) City of Torrance Business License and (2) Home Occupation Permit. These two City-issued permits are required for all resident-vendors.
The third permit is a Cottage Food Permit. This permit is issued by the County. There are two classifications for this Permit: Class A and Class B. Specifications for each classification can be found on the County’s website. Questions regarding this permit need to be directed to the County. The City does not issue this permit. If you are selling baked goods produced in your kitchen and/or repackaging food items produced outside of your kitchen, a Cottage Food Permit is required. If you are only re-selling packaged food items, a Cottage Food Permit is not required.
The pro-rated cost for a City of Torrance Business License for the 2019 season is $92.75. There is no charge for a City of Torrance Home Occupation Permit. Please read the County’s webpage thoroughly to determine which Cottage Food Classification, if any, you need to apply for. The County’s current fees are listed on their webpage as well.
What type of permits do residents need if they are only reselling packaged food that was bought at a bakery or store (such as a market, Costco, Sam’s, Smart & Final, Target, etc.) and NOT baking or repackaging food?
The two permits issued by the City of Torrance are (1) City of Torrance Business License and (2) Home Occupation Permit. These two City-issued permits are required for all resident-vendors, even if you are only reselling packaged foods. A Cottage Food Permit is not for reselling food. Its purpose is for a person to be able to make approved Cottage Food items and sell either from their home or at a community function. Repackaging food, however, would require a Cottage Food Permit. Clarification on repackaging food is available on the County’s website.
May a Cottage Food Operator sell cottage foods that were produced in another home kitchen or establishment?
Per the County, if a resident is selling foods that originated from another kitchen, then each of those homes would need their own, respective Cottage Food Permit. In short, all participants and the homeowner would need a Cottage Food Permit.