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Activities you don't want to miss this holiday season

Dave Robles

"When you have roots in a community, you love to help it grow. Mine run deep." The Los Angeles area has been my home since birth...

"When you have roots in a community, you love to help it grow. Mine run deep." The Los Angeles area has been my home since birth...

Nov 30 9 minutes read

Activities you don't want to miss this 

holiday season

Tomorrow is December 1st, time to get your seasonal fun on the calendar. Here are some local favorites.

*** Many of these activities require advanced tickets and often sell out so plan early.

Holiday Lights

Enchanted: Forest Of Light
Descanso Gardens, La Cañada Flintridge

This interactive nighttime experience offers a stunning display of holiday color as you walk through over a mile of some of the Gardens’ most beloved areas. Tickets have a timed entry and must be purchased in advance. Open daily until January 7, 2018.

Drive Through Christmas Tree Lane!

Christmas Tree Lane is one of Southern California’s most celebrated areas during the holidays! The mile-long drive in Altadena features some of the best holiday lights anywhere.

Holiday Light Festival Train Ride
Griffith Park, Los Angeles

The festive one mile train ride through Griffith Park is just $4 per person and riders will experience tens of thousands of lights to get you in the holiday spirit. The train ride can be experienced now through December 23, 2017 and from December 26 – December 28, 2017.


Moonlight Forest

301 N. Baldwin Ave. Arcadia

Los Angeles Arboretum and Botanic Garden, is the unforgettable Moonlight Forest. The breathtaking fantasy of light will transform the Arboretum like you have never seen before. You will be mesmerized by the magnificent lantern art that represents exotic animals, shimmering flowers, whimsical pandas, soaring dragons, and other fantastic creations. The illuminating entertainment of the Moonlight Forest is perfect to enjoy with friends and family. Friday, October 26, 2018 - Sunday, January 06, 2019  -  5:30pm - 10:00pm

L.A. Zoo Lights

Glowing animals welcome you on an unforgettable nighttime journey that includes giant illuminated snowflakes, a disco ball forest, a whimsical herd of animated elephants, and a twinkling tunnel filled with dynamic swirls of color. L.A. Zoo Lights is a not-to-be-missed nighttime holiday light experience and has glowed brighter each year since its debut in 2014. This year’s event features a dazzling new area to explore, luminous new displays, and reimagined favorites. November 16, 2018 – January 6, 2019 Closed Nov 22, Dec 24, and Dec 25 6-10 p.m.

Ice Skating

Pershing Square Ice Rink
Pershing Square

Pershing Square’s ice rink is a favorite for Southland skaters who like to show off their skills in front of moderate to large crowds enthusiastically taking in all of the sliding on this particular frozen ground. The temporary venue stays busy in downtown Los Angeles until January 15 2018, so get your blades ready (or rent them on the spot) for fast and furious one-hour sessions at this popular rink that doesn’t disappoint even the most uncoordinated ice queen or ice king. Open till January 15, 2018.

The Rink in Downtown Burbank
Corner N 3rd St. and E Orange Grove Ave, Burbank

The outdoor ice skating rink will feature not just skating, but fundraising events and special performances too. Transforming the corner of North 3rd Street and East Orange Grove Avenue into a winter wonderland, skaters of all ages are welcome and will get to take part and enjoy the $10 unlimited skating. Take part in curling, as well as skating lessons, too. Open daily until January 7, 2018.

L.A. Kings Holiday Ice

800 W Olympic Blvd , Los Angeles

The annual L.A. Kings ice skating rink once again returns to L.A. Live. Skate around the dazzling Christmas tree that stands in the middle of the outdoor rink, and take in an LED holiday light show on the huge screens around the plaza.

Holiday Theater and Concerts


58th Annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration
Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles

Marking it’s 58th year, the holiday gathering at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion hosts an afternoon of performances on December 24, 2017 that range from traditional choirs, to Dixieland blues ensembles. Over the course of the free, open to the public afternoon, the Korean, Chinese, Mexican, Filipino, and Cuban communities of Los Angeles will all be represented with highlighted performances, showcasing their own cultural celebration of the holiday season.

Bob Baker’s ‘Nutcracker’

Pasadena Playhouse, Pasadena

Nov 30 2018-Dec 30 2018

The beloved Bob Baker Marionette Theater may be leaving behind its longtime home, but it’s not ditching its annual holiday production. For the first time since opening in 1969, the charming play and its 100-plus handmade puppets move off-site with this staging at the Pasadena Playhouse.

‘A Christmas Carol’

A Noise Within, Pasadena

Even the grumpiest of list-makers at yuletide has to include a production of Dickens’s most beloved tale of becoming a better person. Geoff Elliott and Julia Rodriguez-Elliott direct this production, with costumes by the imaginative Angela Balogh Calin, starring Elliott and his fellow resident artists of A Noise Within theater company—all ranking among L.A.’s best classical actors—staged in ANW’s spacious house with perfect sightlines from every seat, even for the kids. December 1 2018 to December 23 2018

Holiday Sing-Along

Walt Disney Concert Hall, Downtown

Strike the harp and join the chorus with the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Holiday Sing-Along at Walt Disney Hall. The seasonal program offers two performances, with a special guest to-be-named taking the stage to recite holiday poems. A festive sing-along of holiday classics by the Angeles Chorale will include provided lyric sheets—just in case you forget how many fa-la-la-las are in “Deck the Halls.”   December 22, 2018



Las Posadas
Olvera Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012

This yearly event is a nine-night re-enactment of the journey of Mary and Joseph. Each night families will enjoy singing, a candlelight procession, and a children’s piñata breaking. Las Posadas is scheduled for December 16th through December 24th from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm.

Winterfest at Santa Anita Park
285 W. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007

The infield area of the Santa Anita racetrack has been transformed into a Winter Wonderland for the 1st Annual Winterfest! Families can go ice skating, ride in a horse-drawn carriage, check out the petting zoo, hear holiday music, bounce in the inflatables, visit Santa and enjoy holiday treats. It’s $5 to get in and parking is free. Check website for ice skating and other event ticket prices.



Botanica Community Gift Market

Botanica, Silver Lake

Dec 2 2018

Silver Lake's darling restaurant and pantry shop is throwing its first-ever holiday market, and the team is celebrating vendors from the community. Want to shop local? Here are the cute, curated and L.A.-made gifts you've been looking for: ceramics from Paperclip Pottery, natural cosmetics by Paige Wentling, wreaths and bespoke bouquets from Whit Hazen, aprons, table linens and more from Suay Sew Shop, and a selection of novels, cookbooks and children's books from The Lev. While you're there, you might as well pick up a few spices, cookbooks and aprons for yourself. You've earned it.

Renegade Craft Fair

Los Angeles State Historic Park, Chinatown

Dec 8 2018-Dec 9 2018

Any crafter worth her weight in cashmere yarn knows that Renegade Craft Fair is the fair all other fairs aspire to. Renegade hosts an epic holiday fairs in wintertime to help you check everyone off your gift list—including yourself.

Echo Park Craft Fair

Mack Sennett Studios, Los Feliz

Dec 8 2018-Dec 9 2018

Reserve a spot in your weekend for the latest installment of this Pinterester’s Utopia. Hosted at Mack Sennett Studios, the Echo Park Craft Fair returns, welcoming artsy Eastsiders for a feast of hand-dyed clothing and delicately concocted bath oils, one-of-a-kind ceramics, weavings, jewelry and beyond.

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