Christmas Tree Lane Opens: Southern California is flush with festive sights come December, but only a few of them remain up all year long. True, the lights of Christmas Tree Lane, Altadena's celebrated thoroughfare of historic deodars, stay off for most of the calendar, but those gorgeous and gargantuan specimens are always there, awaiting their next time to shine. That moment comes, for the 95th year, on Saturday, Dec. 12, along with a daytime Winter Arts & Crafts Festival. Want to see the first lighting of the year? Be on the lane at 6 o'clock.
Hanukkah Family Festival: The Skirball Cultural Center throws a joyful gathering full of tunes -- hello, Lisa Loeb -- and dance -- greetings, S.H.I.N.E. Mawusi -- and plenty of art- and craft-makery. The café at the Mulholland Drive institution is serving up latkes and jelly doughnuts, and there are beautiful menorahs to see, too. The Festival of Lights is entering its second weekend, so revel in community and stories and history and the coming-together-ness of family/friends. Oh, and, yes, you can revel in a jelly doughnut or two, too.
Cirque du Soleil at Dodger Stadium: It's opening weekend in LA for the steampunkiest, flip-tastic-iest, clowns-and-mystery-iest marvel currently on tour. The brass-and-feats extravaganza is the 35th production from the wonder-making Montreal company, and its funky Victorian flair, and music-box-y sweetness, is worn like a lacy handkerchief on its velvet sleeve. That it all happens under a big striped big top just makes it even more magnifique. Through Feb. 7, 2016
What to do, where to go and what to see
King Harbor Holiday Boat Parade: One has to ponder what all the fishies out the Pacific think of the second and third weekends of December, when coastal towns and harbors up and down the coast string up lots of bulbs on their boats. They have to like it, we'd guess -- surely groupers like glow and sharks like sparkle -- and we on the shores get to enjoy it, too. Make for King Harbor Marina in Redondo Beach on Saturday, Dec. 12 for some of that holiday, water-reflected pizzazz. It's a stunner of a sight.
Point Fermin Lighthouse Decorations: The San Pedro landmark is turning 141 this month, and, my, is it looking as spry and as gussied-up as ever. Want to see for yourself? Make for the handsome historic building on Saturday, Dec. 12. The boughs and bows will be about, lending the lighthouse an air of a bygone holiday. The fact is that you'll never be a lighthouse keeper circa Christmas 1909, a perfectly dreamy setting from a novel, but you can play at the idea, for an hour or so, in a seasonal and stately setting.