California dreamin' can soon become a reality.

By Rachel Chang
May 19, 2021
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California is looking ahead to its official reopening on June 15 by showcasing some of the best that the Golden State has to offer. To celebrate its comeback, Visit California is giving away exclusive travel, dining, and entertainment experiences, including Disneyland vacations, a behind-the-scenes tour with the San Diego Padres, Marriott International road trips, a dinner by celebrity chef Curtis Stone, and even micro weddings at Carneros Resort and Spa in Napa Valley.

It's all part of the Dreaming on in California initiative to encourage Americans to make up for major milestones delayed by the pandemic. "California has always been a place of endless possibility, and the state's unmatched scenery will provide the perfect backdrop for these long-overdue celebrations," Visit California's president and CEO Caroline Beteta said in a release.

Mickey Mouse at Disneyland
Credit: Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort

U.S. residents over the age of 18 can enter by sharing the milestones and celebrations they missed out on during the pandemic and the impact it had on their lives. Submissions will be accepted until 11:59 PT on May 24, 2021. Bonus points will go to those who also add photos and video links to tell their stories.

The selected winners will then have their do-over California adventures from June 21 to 25. Stone will kick off the week by whipping up a sunset dinner for 10 to 15 couples who missed out on anniversaries or other milestones, while the Padres will help two families reunite with a Petco Park stadium tour, tickets to the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, and an Omni San Diego Hotel stay on June 23. And on June 25, Carneros Resort and Spa will host 10 individual micro weddings or vow renewals with up to 20 guests at its new wedding venue, Hilltop Lawn.

Couple getting married at Napa vineyard
Credit: Courtesy of Carneros Resort and Spa

Also during the week, three families of four will get a Disneyland Resort package, which includes two nights at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, three-day Park Hopper tickets to both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park, a one-day Disneyland Resort VIP tour, and a $100 Disney dining card.

Two other groups will receive customized luxury road trips, with car rentals and stays at Marriott International. One group will explore Northern California, spending the nights at Monterey Marriott, JW Marriott San Francisco, and San Francisco Marriott Fisherman's Wharf, while the other will experience Southern California at JW Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE; the JW Marriott, Anaheim Resort; and The US Grant, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Diego. (Note: Airfare is not included for any of the packages, and specific details will be revealed on June 1.)

Aerial view of San Diego Padres Field
Credit: Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres

California has had a relatively low rate of COVID-19 cases in recent weeks, with the current daily average of 1,348 positive cases representing three people per 100,000, according to data from The New York Times. Even so, it's taking a more cautious approach than other states, keeping mask mandates in place until its reopening date on June 15, according to The Los Angeles Times.