Free Film, Festive Pasadena Tradition

"A Christmas Story" is this year's family-nice selection.

We're apt to forget appointments of all sorts, and promises to pick up a sack of flour for our neighbor, to make up for the one we borrowed, and we often forget where we stashed the holiday ribbon from last year's wrap-a-thon.

But none of us, not one, is apt to forget the fact that there's a free movie screening, each and every year, in the same spot, and about the same time. And if it arrives during the season of go-go-go, just when we all could use something that's a) free and b) makes us slow down?

Well, even better.

So you likely already know where we're going with this: The Pasadena Playhouse District will once again present its free Saturday morning Christmas film screening at the Laemmle Playhouse 7 on Saturday, Dec. 14.

This year's film? Beware of icy poles and double-dog dares: It's "A Christmas Story."

But it isn't just the free screening of a popular classic that makes the Playhouse's annual shindig oh-so-well-attended. Santa makes a show-ho-ho-ing, and there's an ugly sweater contest, too, with some solid prizes (a gift card to Target, which happens to be a couple of doors down). Entertainment and crafting in the Vroman's courtyard are on the festive roster as well.

And best of all? It's a way to gather foodly donations for the Los Angeles Regional Foodbank. Show with three or more cans and nab a small popcorn voucher.


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It's nice. And it's nice of the Playhouse people to do this each and every year (we're now in year 7). There are grown-up holiday parties and kid holiday to-dos but few that dovetail in the happy middle. Fewer, still, that are free, actually. And even fewer boast the laughs "A Christmas Story" delivers.

Surely you and the tots can guffaw at the department store Santa scene together? If they haven't seen it yet, they seriously need to (and you do, too, to bid goodbye to all of those holiday stresses for an hour or two).

"A Christmas Story" screens at 10 a.m. on Dec. 14.

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