It's free, it's ginormous, it's overflowing with stars (on trees) and stars (on stage, talking and singing) and the faux snow that falls, even on a warm Southern California night? Makes everyone giggle like sugared-up tots while they dig around various bags for their camera phones. It's the Grove's annual tree-lighting -- the 7th lighting celebration, if you can believe it -- and, no surprise, there's bunches going on.
The Band from TV -- which includes Greg Grunberg and Adrian Pasdar of "Heroes" -- will be rocking the stage, as will Natalie Cole (we're hoping she'll cover her "The Christmas Song," a carol long associated with her dad Nat). Jon Lovitz is hosting, and Heidi and Spencer? Oh, they'll be there. Believe it. (One note: Hugh Laurie, initially slated to appear, will not be attending.)
Feels like, in fact, everyone who has a zip code starting with a "9" will be there, so best get there extremely, are-you-sure-we're-not-too-early early, because once the last person scoots in that can fit, The Grove is shutting down entry. No tears, no "I know Rudolph," no pleading; you won't get in if the place is full. The major extravaganza in a night packed with extravaganzas is the lighting of the massive tree and Santa's arrival, so be sure to get there in plenty of time with hours to spare. Would you want to make Santa miffed for missing him? We thought not. Sunday, November 23. 7:30PM (early arrival recommended). 189 Grove Drive, Los Angeles. 323-900-8080