Santas and carols and reindeer, oh my!  It’s time to pack in all the Christmas festivities you can before Santa goes back to the North Pole for a whole year.  You can sing along with Mary Poppins herself, join a Posadas procession, mingle with marionettes, hear a Christmas concert or go back to old Bethlehem.  We’ve got our favorite Nutcracker, everyone’s favorite Elf and gingerbread treats.  And celebrate Winter Solstice with a wonderful walk.  Where will you be?

LAB-Nutcracker

Downtown

Holiday Sing-Along with Julie Andrews
Kids love belting out holiday classics.  Parents get a kick out of singing along with special guest Mary-freaking-Poppins!  The L.A. Phil makes a pretty great back-up band, too. Sat., 11:30 a.m. & 2:30 p.m. Downtown. $35.50-$89.50. All ages. Event details.

Las Posadas at Olvera Street
This nightly presentation of the nine-day journey of Mary and Joseph is portrayed with singing, entertainment, ballet folklorico and a candlelight parade. A piñata for the kiddos ends the festivities.  Fri. – Sun., 6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Downtown. Free. All ages. Event details.

Eastside

Bob Baker’s “Holiday Spectacular”
Whatever winter holiday you celebrate you’ll find just the thing as you take a magical holiday journey with over 100 marionettes celebrating everything from Chanukah to a trip to Santa’s workshop.  Sat. & Sun, 10:30 a.m. Eastside. $20. Ages 2 and up. Event details.

Westside

“Elf” at the Aero
Has it been ten years already since we fell in love with Will Ferrell’s Buddy the elf?  Yes, we’re that old.  Time to share it with the kids, and no better way than on the big screen. Sun., 7:30 p.m. Santa Monica. $11-$13.  Ages 5 and up. Event details.

Los Angeles Ballet’s “The Nutcracker”
While we love pretty much every and any production of the Nutcracker, this traditional presentation is our favorite.  And this weekend it’s at Royce Hall, a stellar venue.   Sat. & Sun., Various times. Miracle Mile. $24-$95.  All ages. Event details.

Burbank

We’ve Got “Annie!”
When Annie sings about “Tomorrow” and a “Hard Knock Life” you’ll feel like the kid in the family.  This production with a live orchestra is fun for everyone.  Fri. – Sun., Various times. Burbank. $15-$25. Ages 4 and up. Event details.

Pasadena Area

“Peace on Earth,” A Christmas Concert
The Los Angeles Symphony present “Peace on Earth” with a smattering of all your favorite holiday symphonic selections: “The Nutcracker,” “Ave Maria,” “O Holy Night” and more. Sat., 8 p.m. Glendale. $35-$75. Ages 6 and up. Event details.

Valley

A Solstice Stroll Through the Season
This seasonal stroll through a native plant garden is only 30 minutes – just perfect for short legs, and the timing is perfect to wish your family a Happy Winter Solstice. Sun., 1 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. Calabasas. Free. All ages. Event details.

Visit Bethlehem
“Back To Bethlehem” is an outdoor live re-creation of the first Christmas, which lets you feel like you’ve stepped back in time to stroll through the town and interact with craftsmen, travelers, Roman Soldiers, and a young couple with a new baby. Fri. – Sun., 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Chatsworth. $2/person; $10 /family. All ages. Event details.

Worth the Drive

Schools Out, Time for Gingerbread Academy
This is our kind of school!  It’s in a gorgeous, vacation-y spot, it’s only 2 hours long, and you get to decorate a gingerbread house with all the frosting and candy you can imagine.  Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m. Dana Point. $70/family of 4. All ages. Event details.

Solve a History Mystery at Hart Ranch
Calling all school age shamuses to help the Hart Museum solve a mystery. Look at the clues and solve an actual historic mystery like real life historians. Fri., 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Newhall. Free. All ages. Event details.

What are you up to this festive weekend?  Don’t forget to check our calendar of things to do; it’s not only the most wonderful time of the year, it’s the busiest!

-Meghan Rose

Photo credits: St Regis Hotel at Monarch Beach and Reed Hutchinson via Los Angeles Ballet’s website.