20 Of The Best Things To Do In Southern California This Week: Dec. 2 - 5

The MoMA Contenders film series opens at the Hammer. Rian Johnson talks Knives Out. Storytellers share their work at the Moth GrandSLAM and RISK live shows. Cassell's celebrates its 70th anniversary with special burgers. Imbibers around the city toast the repeal of Prohibition on Dec. 5.

MoMA Contenders 2019 film series returns to the Hammer Museum, opening with Dolemite is My Name, directed by Craig Brewer. (Courtesy of Netflix)

MONDAY, DECEMBER 2 - TUESDAY, DECEMBER 17
MoMA Contenders 2019
Hammer Museum — 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood
Every year, New York's Museum of Modern Art in selects a handful of recent films that they think will stand the test of time. Each screening is followed by conversations with directors and actors. The L.A. edition of the series includes Dolemite is My Name with Eddie Murphy and Wesley Snipes (Monday); The Report with Scott Z. Burns (Tuesday); Parasite with Bong Joon-ho (Wednesday) and One Child Nation with Nanfu Wang (Thursday). The screenings begin at 7:30 p.m.
COST: $20 ($10 for museum members); MORE INFO

The Mission Inn in Riverside kicks off its holiday season on Friday with a spectacular show of lights. (Mission Inn Hotel & Spa)

MONDAY, DECEMBER 2 - TUESDAY, DECEMBER 31
Festival of Lights
Mission Inn Hotel & Spa — 3649 Mission Inn Ave., Riverside
Five million lights illuminate the Riverside hotel, which also gets decked out with 200 animated figures including angels, elves and Dickens carolers. You might even find Santa Claus, taking gift requests, among the crowd.
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO

MONDAY, DECEMBER 2; 8 - 10 P.M.
The Moth GrandSLAM Championship
Regent Theater — 448 S. Main St., downtown L.A.
The night of storytelling features hilarious and heartbreaking personal tales from 10 past Moth champs. For the GrandSLAM title, they'll be spinning yarns about "veering off track."
COST: $25; MORE INFO

MONDAY, DECEMBER 2; 5 - 6 P.M.
Knives Out with Q&A
ArcLight Cinemas — 6360 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood
ArcLight teams with Collider's For Your Consideration series to present screenings of top award contenders and live conversations with talent. After the 5 p.m. screening of the mystery-drama, stay for the Q&A with director Rian Johnson and composer Nathan Johnson. Each guest in attendance will also receive a mystery gift (while supplies last).
COST: $20; MORE INFO

E.P. & L.P. celebrates modern Cal-Asian cuisine with an 8-course dinner created by chef Sabel Braganza and friends. (Courtesy of E.P. & L.P.)

MONDAY, DECEMBER 2; 6 - 8 P.M.
Me, My Friends & I: Eight-course Dinner
E.P. & L.P. — 603 N. La Cienega Blvd., West Hollywood
The restaurant's head chef, Sabel Braganza, calls on her culinary pals including Top Chef winner Mei Lin (Nightshade), Jon Yao (Kato) and Zen Ong (Inda) to create a one-night-only, eight-course modern Asian feast. The family-style dinner features flavors of the Philippines, Taiwan, China and Indonesia. Reservations and pre-payment are required. Last seating will be at 8 p.m.
COST: $68 per person; MORE INFO

Blitzen's pop-up bar returns to Here and Now in DTLA with holiday-themed drinks like Put On Your Yarmulke. (Courtesy of Blitzen's)

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3 - TUESDAY, DECEMBER 31
Blitzen's Cocktail Pop-up
Here & Now — 300 S. Santa Fe Ave., Suite N, downtown L.A.
Bring Rudolf and Donner to the annual holiday-themed bar takeover, featuring drinks that yule enjoy. The Get Blitzen'd has tequila, fino, sweet vermouth, lemon, falernum and prosecco while the Put On Your Yarmulke includes Monkey Shoulder, Manischewitz, grapefruit cordial, allspice dram, aquafaba, lime and bitters. Food offerings include Christmas poutine, latkes and Santa's Salad.
COST: Varies; MORE INFO

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3; 7:30 - 9:30 P.M.
History of L.A. Ska: Part 2
Grammy Museum at L.A. Live — 800 W. Olympic Blvd., downtown L.A.
More than 25 years ago, groups of SoCal musicians and scenesters — inspired by Jamaican sounds and British fashion of the '60s — led a ska resurgence. Radio host Junor Francis moderates a discussion with five prominent figures from the scene including Angelo Moore (Fishbone), Chris Murray (CMC/King Apparatus) and Darrin Pfeiffer (ex-Goldfinger).
COST: $15; MORE INFO

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3; 4:30 - 10:30 P.M.
The Witcher Experience
The Egyptian Theatre Hollywood — 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
The popular game (based on a book series) gets the small screen treatment on Netflix beginning Dec. 20. This one-night only fan event allows guests to step into character roles in an immersive experience, peruse a marketplace and watch live entertainment. Pre-registration does not guarantee entry if venue is at capacity. 18+ or with legal guardian / parent event.
COST: FREE with RSVP; MORE INFO

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3; 8 - 10 P.M.
U Up? Live Show
Palace Theatre — 630 S. Broadway, downtown L.A.
The modern dating podcast, part of the Betches Media network, is on its first national tour. Hosts Jordana Abraham and Jared Freid discuss everything from hook-ups to relationships. A few audience members will get dating app profile makeovers and you'll play the interactive audience game "Red Flag or Deal Breaker."
COST: $23.50 - $31.50; MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4 - WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 18
Nikkei-Tiki
YAPA — 236 S. Los Angeles St., Suite G, downtown L.A.
On Wednesdays until Christmas, the Peruvian-Japanese restaurant in Little Tokyo hosts a lineup of all-star bartenders such as Joey Bernardo, Naomi Schimek and Josh Goldman, who will offer Nikkei twists on classic Tiki cocktails.
COST: Varies; MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4 - SATURDAY, DECEMBER 21
Dark-Dark-Ride-Ride: Holiday Nightmare
Zombie Joe's Underground Theatre — 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood
The ZJU troupe presents a new holiday horror experience: a wild ride through a winter wonderhell. The rides runs Wednesdays through Sundays and launch every 15 minutes starting at 8 p.m. with the last ride at 11:45 p.m. This is for those 18+. You must sign a release-waiver at the door, prior to entry.
COST: Tickets are $35 (for up to two people); MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4 - SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 2
Disney's Frozen
Hollywood Pantages Theatre — 6233 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
Hot on the heels of the movie's sequel, the theatrical version of the original film hits L.A. for an extended run. The production, which focuses on the adventures of sisters Elsa and Anna, features songs from the movie plus an expanded score with new numbers.
COST: Tickets start at $39; MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4 - TUESDAY, DECEMBER 10; 6 P.M.
Cassell's 70th Anniversary
Cassell's Hamburgers (various locations)
The venerated burger joint celebrates its 70th anniversary with a weeklong guest chef series from 6 p.m. nightly (until supplies last). The series starts with Nancy Silverton on Dec. 4. Other guest chefs include Jude Parra of Majordomo and George Motz of Motz's Burgers.
COST: Varies; MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4; 7 - 10 P.M.
The Biggest Little Farm with a Live Score
The Wiltern — 3790 Wilshire Blvd., Koreatown
Watch the film about documentarian John Chester and his wife Molly who are evicted from their L.A. apartment and try to develop a sustainable farm on 200 acres in Ventura County. Emmy-winning composer Jeff Beal conducts his score live-to-picture with the Hollywood Chamber Orchestra. Stick around for a post-screening discussion with Beal and the Chesters, moderated by journalist Tim Greiving.
COST: Tickets start at $29.50; MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4; 8 - 10 P.M.
RISK!
The Virgil — 4519 Santa Monica Blvd., East Hollywood
The live storytelling show and podcast comes to a new home, with a holiday edition hosted by David Crabb. Hear true stories from Jenna Brister, Chris Lam, Wav Viola and Ron Hart that they never though they'd share in public.
COST: $12 - $15 ; MORE INFO

Ra and other members of the Source Family serve food at the Source, their popular Sunset Strip restaurant. (Isis Aquarian/Source Archives )

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 5
Source Family Dinner
Gratitude Kitchen & Bar — 419 N. Canon Dr., Beverly Hills
In the early to mid-1970s, one of the most influential restaurants in L.A. was the Source. Located on the Sunset Strip, the vegetarian restaurant was run by a group of white-robed, psychedelic music-playing, weed-smoking, free-loving hippie types known as the Source Family. This week, the Cafe Gratitude pays tribute to the Source with a five-course dinner (featuring CBD doses and optional wine pairings) inspired by the menu at the original restaurant. Guests must wear white or cream-colored clothes.
COST: $75; MORE INFO

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 5 - SUNDAY, DECEMBER 8
The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker: A Debbie Allen Original Production
Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center — 1935 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Redondo Beach
Borrowing from the original ballet, Allen presents a version that takes place on New Year's Eve in NYC. The Johnsons are having a grand party and when young Kara falls asleep, the Nutcracker comes alive. Their journey takes them to Candy Cane Land, Egypt, Bollywood, Jazzland, Russia and the Land of the Kimono Dolls. The 10th anniversary cast features Allen, Raven-Symone, Carlo Imperato, Tichina Arnold and Matthew Johnson.
COST: $30 - $110; MORE INFO

The annual holiday ornament show returns to iam8bit gallery in Echo Park. (Courtesy of iam8bit)

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 5 - SUNDAY, DECEMBER 22
iam8bit's 6th Annual Handmade Ornaments Show
iam8bit — 2147 Sunset Blvd., Echo Park
The holiday art show features one-of-a-kind, handmade ornaments crafted by artists from around the country. Purchase works of fiber arts, ceramics, painting and sculpture that are the polar opposite of mass produced tree decorations. The opening reception takes place on Dec. 5 from 7 - 10 p.m.
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 5; 5 - 8 P.M.
The Collective Holiday Bizarre
Recontained — 1629 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice
The eco-friendly shop holds a holiday fair with seasonal surprises, drinks, music and treats. Specials and exclusive seasonal products will be offered from The Piece Collective, Recontained, Four Sigmatic's Shroom Room, Sabah, These Hands Maker's Collective and Sweet Heart Ceramics.
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO

Several restaurants and bars celebrate Repeal Day on Dec. 5, including Eureka!'s Whiskey Wonderland. (Eureka! Restaurant Group)

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 5
Repeal Day
Various locations
Dec. 5, 1933, marks the day that the taps started flowing legally again with the repeal of Prohibition. Bars and restaurants around SoCal will mark the occasion with specials:

COST: Varies; MORE INFO