LA County

Free Tradition: LA County Holiday Celebration

Dance, drums, mariachi, and more return to Dorothy Chandler on Christmas Eve.

Lists, as a rule, rule the week of Christmas, with rosters of recipes and tallies of gift cards and schedules of family visits and menus of menus crowding at the edges of our already fully festooned, can't-fit-another-thing lives.

Which makes the annual present from the LA County Board of Supervisors to the people of the region extra awesomely, ease-of-minded-ly special. There are no reservations or tickets to pick up or seats to select at the LA County Holiday Celebration, the mega music-dance-everything treat ready to roll at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on Thursday, Dec. 24.

There's nothing to fret or fuss over, in fact. You can show whenever, leave whenever, and pay nothing to do so, all while enjoying some of the area's finest sounds and performance in one of the area's finest venues. It's a Christmas Eve treat that's marking its 56th year, and it leaps in honor of the 2015 holidays from 3 p.m. to 6 o'clock in the evening, which means you can attend but still make your family dinner or your friend's luminaria-making party or, if you must, the mall at the very last minute.

On the grand stage? The Albert McNeil Jubilee Singers, Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles, Palmdale High School Choral Union, Korean American Youth Performing Artists, and Spanish Harlem Orchestra.

Plus the oh-so-important oh-so-many-more artists set to sing and twirl and entertain.

Do attendees typically line up well in advance of the 3 o'clock start time? They do. Consider that the festive, be-entertained delights rev up on Music Center Plaza at half past noon, so do not doubt that the whole queue gets going early.

Do people really come and go? It's absolutely A-OK and no one will give you the eye, as it is expected and allowed.


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Do some stay for the whole shebang? It's tradition for many Angelenos and their families.

Does the whole no-admission-needed, no-reservations-required vibe take a way an iota of the seasonal stress? We can't promise that, nor that you won't pay for parking, depending on how you get downtown and where you put your vehicle. We can say, though, that pausing on Christmas Eve to soak in some splendor, amid the rush, has worked for thousands of locals for well over a half century. 

Calming, joyful, LA-rrific, full of trumpets and carols and the frippery we desire by this point in the big push to the end of the year. Who wouldn't love such a bonbon delivered direct from LA County?

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