Lots of us love the holidays and give ourselves permission to savor the lead-up to them. Here are 24 suggestions for things to do from now through Dec. 24 in the Sacramento region.
See an event you like? Check the links for additional times and dates, as many of these activities also occur on other days the month.
Dec. 1 – Macy’s Theatre of Lights. Amid the balconies, rooftops and facades of Old Sacramento, hear recitation of Clement Clarke Moore’s poem “The Night Before Christmas” and be dazzled by a light and sound show. 6:15 p.m., K Street between Front and Second streets, Sacramento. Free. 916-442-8575. oldsacramento.com
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Dec. 2 – Annual Community Tree lighting and Winter Wonderland. Enjoy music, photos with Santa and refreshments. 5-9 p.m. City Hall, 1110 W. Capitol Ave., West Sacramento. Free. www.westsacramentochamber.com
Dec. 3 – 24th annual Capital City Yacht Club Holiday Lighted Boat Parade. From the banks of the Sacramento River or from a riverfront restaurant, catch the flotilla as it makes its way from the club’s West Sacramento marina home past Old Sacramento on its way to Garden Highway and back. Free. 6:45 p.m.
Dec. 4 – Singalong Messiah Concert. Bring your inner “Hallelujah” to the fore and join in or simply find a seat and listen. 4 p.m., Bethany Presbyterian Church, 5625 24th St., Sacramento, free entry; $10 music score, 916-428-5281; www.sacchoralcalendar.com
Dec. 5 – The 10th How the Grouch Stole Christmas Tour. This hip-hop show features all eight Living Legends members: The Grouch, Murs, Eligh, Luckyiam, Sunspot Jonz, Scarub, Aesop and Bicasso, backed by DJ Fresh. 6:30 p.m., Ace of Spades, 1417 R St., Sacramento. $30-$34. www.eventbrite.com
Dec. 6 – Hanukkah traditions. Learn how traditional recipes are made for Festival of Lights celebrations. 6:30 p.m., Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op Cooking School, 2820 R St., Sacramento. $40-$49 sacfood.coop
Dec. 7 – Camellia City Flute Choir. The Music at Noon series provides concerts such as this one as well as beauty and tranquility at midday. Noon-1 p.m., Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1300 N St., Sacramento. Free
Dec. 8 – SantaCon Bar Crawl. Sponsored by 11 Old Sacramento establishments, this crawl emphasizes holiday costumes (including Santa) and Christmas sweaters; find details on the event’s Facebook page. 916-970-5226. Free entry
Dec. 9 – Nutty Nutcracker. Giggle through the Sacramento Ballet’s zany send-up of the holiday favorite. 7 p.m., Community Center Theater, 1301 L St., Sacramento. 916-552-5800, www.sacballet.org
Dec. 10 – “Missa Virtualis: Fusion of Faith.” Celebrate hundreds of years of sacred music performed a cappella by the Vocal Art Ensemble. 7:30 p.m., Unitarian Universalist Church, 27078 Patwin Road, Davis. www.vae.trug.com
Dec. 11 – Tenth annual Holiday Classic Fun Run. Do your warm-up stretches and bring a gift for the Salvation Army toy drive for this 5K race. 9 a.m. start, Sutter’s Landing Park at 28th & A streets, Sacramento. Free. www.fleetfeetsacramento.com
Dec. 12 – State Capitol Christmas Tree. By day, enjoy the 900 ornaments handcrafted by persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities. By night marvel at the 10,000 ultra-low wattage LED lights on the white fir. 10th and Capitol Mall.
Dec. 13 – The Bolshoi Ballet’s “Nutcracker” in Cinema. The performance, choreographed by Yuri Grigorovich, was recorded live in 2014; $20, 7 p.m., Tower Theater, 2508 Land Park Dr., Sacramento. www.readingcinemasus.com
Dec. 14 – Sock It to Me. If you haven’t yet contributed, don’t miss the last day of Sac Sock Drop’s attempt to collect 15,000 pairs of socks for men, women and children in need. All day, Uptown Studios, 2415 23rd St., Sacramento 916-446-1082, uptownstudios.net
Dec. 15 – “Angels We Have Heard on High.” The Sacramento Master Singers will surround you with candlelight and harmonies. 7 p.m., St. Francis of Assisi Church, 1066 26th St., Sacramento. $10-$22; 916-788-7464, mastersingers.org
Dec. 16 – Holiday Crafts and Cocktails, Crocker Art Museum. Sip holiday drinks while making seasonal decorations. $18-$25. 6-9 p.m., Crocker Art Museum, 216 O St., Sacramento. 916-808-7000, www.crockerartmuseum.org
Dec. 17 – Harry Potter Yule Ball 3. What better way to enjoy a formal dance for ages 14-19 than in Hogwarts style? 8 p.m. Tsakopoulos Library Galleria, 828 I St., Sacramento. Free, register online. 916-264-2920, www.saclibrary.org/yuleball
Dec. 18 – RiverBells Winter Concert. Be mesmerized by the sounds of this south Sacramento English handbell ensemble. 2 p.m., Prince of Peace Church, 7501 Franklin Blvd., Sacramento. $5 (half goes to the South Sacramento Food Closet), riverbells.org
Dec. 19 – “White Christmas.” View the 1954 holiday classic film starring Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney, Danny Kaye and Vera-Ellen, not to mention the Irving Berlin song of the same title. 7 p.m., Crest Theatre, 1013 K St., Sacramento. $8-$10, 916-476-3356, www.crestsacramento.com
Dec. 20 – Ice skate. Glide on your choice of rinks: Folsom Ice Rink, 915 Sutter St., 1 1/2 -hour sessions 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; $10-$12; $3 skate rental, 916-985-7452, www.folsomicerink.com; or Downtown Ice Rink, 2-8 p.m., Seventh and K streets, Sacramento. $6-$12 (includes skate rental), godowntownsac.com
Dec. 21 – Soul 4 the Season. Avoid all things childlike or childish at this holiday show starring four vocalists. 7 p.m., Harlow’s, 2708 J St., Sacramento; $25-28 916-441-4693; , harlows.com
Dec. 22 – “Winter’s Solstice” Tour. Settle in for acoustic music by Windham Hill’s Will Ackerman, Barbara Higbie and Alex de Grassi. 7:30 p.m., Harris Center, 10 College Parkway, Folsom, 916-608-6888, harriscenter.net
Dec. 23 – “The Nutcracker.” Delight in Ron Cunningham’s choreography as the Sacramento Ballet dances to live music. 2 and 7 p.m., Sacramento Community Center Theatre, 1301 L St., Sacramento. $28-$98; 916-808-5181, www.sacballet.org
Dec. 24 – Solstice Stroll. Discover the gifts of nature as they’re described by a naturalist at Effie Yeaw Nature Center. 10:30 a.m., 2850 San Lorenzo Way, Carmichael; center entry by donation; $5 car entry fee to Ancil Hoffman County Park; 916-489-4918; www.sacnaturecenter.net