Holiday Guide to LA 2014

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It’s that time of year again! Well, some will argue that it is in fact not that time of year yet, but gosh darn it, I’m in the spirit! What better way to feel festive than to plan the ultimate Christmas day? My perfect Christmas day begins with baking cookies, followed by making a snowman, going ice skating, eating a Beaver Tail with hot chocolate, going Christmas shopping, listening to Christmas music while wrapping presents, decorating the Christmas tree by the fire, and finally, cheering on the Los Angeles Kings (because, obviously, on the perfect Christmas day there would also be a hockey game on).

Unfortunately, some of those things can’t be done in LA. For instance, building a snowman may be a little hard without snow. And having a Beaver Tail may be a bit hard since we’re not in Canada. But don’t be discouraged! There are still many festive things to do in LA.

Below, I have compiled the ultimate Holiday guide to LA. Enjoy, and use it wisely!

Fun Places to Ice Skate:

Toyota Sports Center: This is where the Kings train. If you’re lucky, you might even catch the Kings practicing! If you really want to see a King before you hit the ice yourself, check the Toyota Sports Center’s Twitter. They post when the Kings will be practicing, and practices are open to the public to watch.

ICE in Santa Monica: This is always fun because it’s outdoor skating! What a novelty in LA.

Holiday Ice at LA Live: This is another spot to skate outdoors. It’s always fun to go Downtown for dinner and a skate.

Olaf’s Ice Rink in Downtown Disney: Yes, you read that correctly. Olaf, as in Olaf from Frozen. There is a Frozen themed ice rink within driving distance from you. Thank me.

LA Live Ice Rink

Holiday Parades and Walks:

Hollywood Christmas Parade (Nov 30): It’s a huge parade and Jesse McCartney is performing this year. I think that sums up what you need to know.

Montana Ave Holiday Walk (Dec 5): Stroll down Montana Ave, shop a bit, listen to carolers, and enjoy the festivities that each shop puts on. I remember one year, the guy who plays Spongebob performed music from Spongebob in one of the stores. So, this event won’t disappoint.

Christmas Run (Dec 6): Okay so this isn’t a walk, it’s a run (10k or 5k) in Santa Monica and Venice. But it’s oozing with festivity. If you’re into running, I highly suggest you check it out.

Marina Del Rey Boat Parade (Dec 13): This right here was the highlight of my Christmases as a kid. What could be better than a procession of amazingly decorated boats? I’ll tell you what. Nothing.

Marina Boat Parade

Volunteer Opportunities this Holiday Season:

Big Sunday’s Holiday Decorating Party (Dec 6 & 13): Help decorate the Brentwood Veterans Affair Center with Veterans!

Big Sunday’s Holiday Sing Along (Dec 14): At the Sing Along, Big Sunday hosts their holiday toy drive, winter clothes drive, and food drive. If you have things to donate, this is the place to be!

One Voice (Dec 18-21): Every year, One Voice takes over Barker Hanger in Santa Monica Airport and fills it with people sorting and packaging foods to provide to more than 12,500 families in need! When there’s so many people working together for the same cause, it’s magical!

Children’s Hospital Los Angeles: Over the holidays, Children’s Hospital LA purchase, wrap, and deliver presents to 300 families who are unable to provide these gifts themselves. Volunteers can do anything from gift wrap to make a donation.

For more holiday volunteer opportunities, check out Big Sunday’s list of holiday charity projects!

Best Place to See Santa:

The Grove: The Grove has truly created a little winter wonderland in the heart of LA, complete with Santa Claus, a GIANT Christmas tree, and EVEN SNOW. Well, fake snow. But it’s propelled from the rooftops at designated times so it actually feels like it’s snowing. It’s great.

Grove at Christmastime

Holiday Events:

Jingle Ball Village (Dec 5): I know exactly what you’re thinking. Jingle Ball is totally expensive. But did you know there is a FREE concert outside Staples Center prior to Jingle Ball? Meghan Trainor, Becky G, Rixton and Shawn Mendes are performing this year. There’s also a ferris wheel.

Yuletide Cinema (Dec 6 & Dec 13): The Palace Theatre in Downtown LA is showing Elf and A Christmas Story. I freaking love Elf, so expect to see me at the screening of that one.

Holiday Sing Along (Dec 19): The Music Center holds a giant holiday sing along event Downtown. I don’t know about you, but I love Christmas music… even when it’s not Christmastime.

LA County Holiday Celebration (Dec 24): For the 55th year in a row, LA County is hosting a three-hour holiday show, complete with music and performances, in Downtown LA.

The Nutcracker: The Los Angeles Ballet is performing the Nutcracker in multiple locations throughout December.

#NYELA (Dec 31): For the second year, Grand Park is ringing in the New Year with a huge counting down to 2015.

Nutcracker LA Ballet

Okay, I’m sure many of you are wondering what I meant when I mentioned eating Beaver Tails at the beginning of this article. Don’t worry, it’s not an actual beaver tail, but rather a baked good. I’ve found a Beaver Tail recipe, and I’ve included a picture below. Enjoy your next addiction.

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Do all these outside events frighten you? It’s okay. White Christmas is on Netflix. Be sure to watch it after you share this article. 

 

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