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Search for Santa's Mouse Scavenger Hunt




San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum and Downtown SLO Partner 

on COVID-Safe Holiday Activity

SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA, December 2, 2020 – Downtown San Luis Obispo has been the region’s destination for making holiday memories for more than 40 years. This year, with COVID safety at top of mind, community partners in Downtown have reimagined the season to keep everyone safe, while still staying festive and encouraging people to support local businesses.  

The San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum has been closed to the public since March 2020, but their creative team has stayed hard at work behind the scenes, and their newest creation is a collaboration with Downtown SLO, the business association whose popular events like Thursday Night Farmers’ Market and the Holiday Parade have been canceled due to COVID. 

“We started planning for the holidays months ago,” said Downtown SLO Bettina Swigger. “Historically, we have given a coloring book to each child who has visited Santa’s House, but this year we wanted to shine a spotlight on all of the wonderful corners of our downtown, so we thought about preparing a scavenger hunt that would entertain children and show them areas of the downtown that they might not have visited before.” 

Swigger contacted Michelle Jenkins, who was reminded of a children’s book from many years ago, Santa Mouse by Michael Brown. Jenkins and her graphic designer, Rachel Lackmann, created eight tiny scenes for the mouse, and The Search for Santa’s Mouse was born.

“The Children’s Museum has spent 2020 reimagining what learning through play means,” Jenkins said. “In addition to adjusting exhibits and the facility, we have transformed how programs are delivered to the kiddos in our community. The Santa’s Mouse partnership with Downtown SLO is the perfect opportunity to cap off a challenging, yet fulfilling, year.”

This free activity book, available at Santa’s House in Mission Plaza and at shops around downtown, features a charming story, and a scavenger hunt with eight clues for kids and families to find together as they stroll downtown. Each activity book features the opportunity to win an annual membership to the Children’s Museum. The Search for Santa’s Mouse is sponsored by the San Luis Obispo Collection.

With beloved family favorites like the Holiday Parade canceled and the Classic Carousel not in operation due to COVID, Downtown SLO and the City of San Luis Obispo has reimagined the Holiday Season for 2020. The new program,  Light Up Downtown, features a dazzling array of lights, temporary murals and instagram pods, all outdoors for COVID safety. A complete schedule of events and more information will be available at  

Additionally, Downtown SLO will offer holiday shopping opportunities that can’t be found anywhere else with a diverse line-up of small shops and national retailers. A full list of our unique shops, including ways to shop online, can be discovered in the Business Directory at

The Search for Santa’s Mouse is intended to be a safe outdoor walking activity. All downtown holiday lights and activities are outdoors and visitors are expected to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines. Wear a mask, do not gather with groups outside your family, and maintain distance from others while enjoying the sights of the holidays in Downtown San Luis Obispo.


About the Partners

About SLOCM: The San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum inspires learning through play for children ages 2–10, and is located at 1010 Nipomo Street in downtown San Luis Obispo. Visit  for virtual programming information and reopening updates.

About DSLO: Downtown SLO is a private, nonprofit 501c6 membership organization working to foster an economically vibrant Downtown. The Friends of Downtown SLO is a private, nonprofit 501c3 charitable foundation supporting a clean, safe, and beautiful downtown. Connect with Downtown SLO on Instagram & Facebook or visit


Contact: Bettina Swigger, CEO, Downtown SLO, (805) 234-9677 & Michelle Jenkins, Executive Director, San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum, (805)545-5874