57th Annual LA County Holiday Celebration: Mariachi music, choir presentations, handbell-lovely tunes, traditional Korean dance, brassy songs, and Mexican ballet folklorico are all on the big stage at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion during this three-hour extravaganza. It is, as always, a spritely gift to Southern Californians from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, which means you don't have to pay a thing to enter the grand hall (and stay as long as you like). Hours? Plan your Hanukkah or Christmas Eve outing a bit later and head downtown from 3 to 6 o'clock on Saturday, Dec. 24.
Winter Fest: It's all coming up snowflakes at the OC Fair & Event Center, and lights, and hot cocoa, and the other heart-glittery staples of the season. Head to Costa Mesa for tubing, rides, noshing and other traditional to-dos that fold into our festive longings for the touchstones of wintertime. Is it open on Saturday, Dec. 24 and Sunday, Dec. 25? Indeed it is, but ponder getting those tickets in advance.
That Seasonal Sparkle: Southern California is famous for its sunshine, but it also knows how to go the glittery route when the yuletide draws near. Which neighborhoods will you call upon to see some bulb-based glow? Look to Sleepy Hollow, Upper Hastings Ranch, and other see-'em-from-space (or nearly) spots around the region.
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Las Posadas: Olvera Street is the setting for many special gatherings during the year, but one of the most song-filled and historic gatherings happens over several nights ahead of Christmas Eve. It's the story of Mary and Joseph and the search for a place to stay the night, and several people join in to sing, stroll, and pay reverent homage to the meaning. Want to see this venerable walk? Make for the historic quarter nightly (through Dec. 24).
Caroling Around Town: While some of the major sing-along opportunities have bid their goodbyes for 2016, there are still places to hear festively dressed singers crooning the classics around SoCal. Look to the Lawry's restaurants, which feature Victorian-attired carolers, or the Original Farmers Market, where Dickensian carolers shall stroll from noon to 3 p.m. on Christmas Eve.