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Best Things To Do This Thanksgiving Weekend In Los Angeles And SoCal: Nov. 25 - 27

Floating holiday display in the middle of a bay at sunset.
Newport Dunes officially kicks off the holiday season with their Lighting of the Bay opening night celebration.
(Courtesy of Newport Dunes)
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Celebrate the holiday season on Holiday Road or at the Lighting of the Bay. Watch The Nutcracker — performed by puppets. Watch The Three Stooges on the big screen. Add to your vinyl collection with Record Store Day’s Black Friday releases.

Friday, Nov. 25 - Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023

Lighting of the Bay
Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina
1131 Back Bay Dr., Newport Beach 
The ceremony begins at dusk on Friday as the serene bay transforms into a winter wonderland with floating holiday decorations and Christmas trees. The opening night celebration runs from 4 to 9 p.m. with live music, stocking decorating, holiday photo booths and fire pits available on a first-come, first-served basis. There’s also a screening of Elf to cap the night.

An outdoor installation of Christmas trees strung with colorful lights. One large (non-pine) tree towers above the rest.
Holiday Road returns for its third year to King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas.

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Friday, Nov. 25 – Friday, Dec. 30; 5 - 10 p.m.

Holiday Road
King Gillette Ranch
26800 Mulholland Hwy., Calabasas 
The immersive holiday event is back for its third year, featuring a walking trail with plenty of lights, photo opps, food trucks and a holiday bar. Of course, Santa and Mrs. Claus will be visiting, too.
COST: $29.99 to $44.99; MORE INFO

Gerald V. Casale's album cover with green animal drawings with a silhouette of a person in white.
On Black Friday Record Store Day, Devo's Gerald V. Casale is one of many artists releasing new music or new formats. Casale releases a clear vinyl six-track EP, 'The Invisible Man.'
(Courtesy of the artist)

Friday, Nov. 25

Black Friday Record Store Day 
Various locations
If shopping is your thing the day after Thanksgiving, then why not shop indie record stores for Black Friday Record Store Day. Many artists/record labels, including Billie Eilish, Chief Keef, Frank Black and the Catholics, DEVO’s Gerald V. Casale, Old 97’s and many others, are releasing limited-edition vinyl and cassettes. Among the dozens of local stores participating are Yuri’s Records in Southgate, Poobah Records in Pasadena, Run Out Groove Records in Burbank, Fingerprints in Long Beach and Amoeba in Hollywood.

Friday, Nov. 25 - Sunday, Nov. 27; 8:30 p.m.

Turkeys! The Musical
ZJU Theatre Group
4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood
Ian Michaels' musical-comedy is a story about a village of turkeys just living their lives the week leading up to Thanksgiving. Can they handle the truth about the holiday? For ages 16 and older. Wheelchair accessible.
COST: $20 - $25; MORE INFO

Friday, Nov. 25 - Saturday, Nov. 26; 8 p.m.

Cookin’ With Gas
The Groundlings Theatre
7307 Melrose Ave., Fairfax
The Groundlings Main Company, alumni and the Sunday Company members come together for a special holiday edition of the all-improv show. The night is based entirely on audience suggestions, which are turned into comedy gold, satire and songs. The shows will also feature a surprise guest.

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Saturday, Nov. 26; 2 and 8 p.m.

24th annual Three Stooges Big Screen Event
The Alex Theatre
216 N. Brand Ave., Glendale
The Alex Film Society with C3 Entertainment, Inc. presents this year’s annual Three Stooges screening under the theme, “Coffee, Paint & Glue!” Watch the comedy antics of Moe, Larry and Curly in six classic shorts projected from pristine 35mm prints, courtesy of Sony Pictures.
COST: $14  - $16; MORE INFO

A regal woman marionette with hair pulled back and tiara and necklace surrounded by gold tinsel.
Bob Baker's Marionette Theater presents 'The Nutcracker.'
(Lisa Whiteman)

Saturday, Nov. 26 - Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023

Bob Baker Marionette Theater’s Nutcracker
Bob Baker Marionette Theater
4949 York Blvd., Highland Park
The Angeleno holiday tradition returns to delight kids of all ages. Created in 1969, this marionette adaptation of the classic ballet brings together favorite characters, including Clara and Fred, the Nutcracker Prince, the Rat King, the Sugar Plum Fairy and Bob Baker’s playful creations.

Penn and Teller served as grand marshals of the Hollywood Christmas Parade in 2015. This year's grand marshal is Danny Trejo.
(Mike Windle
Getty Images North America)

Sunday, Nov. 27; 6 p.m.

Hollywood Christmas Parade
Sections of Hollywood (starts at Orange) and Sunset Boulevards
Actor, author and restaurateur Danny Trejo serves as the parade’s grand marshal, which celebrates its 90th anniversary this year. Hosted by Erik Estrada, Laura McKenzie, Dean Cain and Montel Williams, with special co-host Elizabeth Stanton, the parade features Hollywood celebrities and movie cars, bands from around the country, equestrians, character balloons, floats and, of course, Santa Claus.

Sunday, Nov. 27; 7 p.m.

Claudio Simonetti's Goblin Plays Live Score to Suspiria 
Palace Theatre
630 S. Broadway, downtown L.A.
Simonetti has composed soundtracks to some of the best-known horror films, including Dawn of the Dead, Demons, Deep Red and Tenebre. This year, his band Goblin celebrates the 45th anniversary of Dario Argento's Suspiria with a live performance of the score set to a screening of the film. The show's second set features Goblin playing its other material alongside clips from the films.
COST: $25 - $40; MORE INFO

Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022; 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Handmade Holiday
The Gamble House
4 Westmoreland Place, Pasadena
In addition to Black Friday, Record Store Day and Small Business Saturday, the Sunday after Thanksgiving is designated Museum Store Sunday. One of the local participating museums is The Gamble House, which showcases handmade goods and the work of local artists. In addition, the Gamble House will offer tours (ticketed, advanced reservations required), espresso drinks from Café Santo, drag queen story hour at 11 a.m. and music by guitarist Shane Savala.

Sunday, Nov. 27 - Monday, Dec. 26 (select days)

Snow N Glow Holiday Festival
Surfer's Point Live at Ventura County Fairgrounds
10 W Harbor Blvd., Ventura
This holiday experience by the sea features snow tubing, more than 1 million lights, holiday magic igloos for rent and a build-your-own s'mores bar. Snow N Glow is open on weekends only and the week of Christmas.
COST: $14.99 - $34.99; MORE INFO

Outdoor Pick

The Beast
How about a glute-kicker of a workout after indulging in all those Thanksgiving calories? This week’s outdoor pick leads to The Beast hiking trail in Santa Clarita. The trailhead is in Whitney Canyon Park, parking just off the 14 freeway and San Fernando Road. While there are several trails in the park, “The Beast” is a challenging hike that’s more than 4.5 miles uphill, ending at a number of radio towers atop Los Pinetos mountain. On clear days, the views are outstanding.

Viewing Pick

Hollywood Chinese: The First 100 Years
This weekend, the Academy Museum wraps its series that examines cinema’s first 100 years, critiquing and celebrating Hollywood’s depictions of Chinese people. Two screenings focus on the work of actor and director Joan Chen. She first appeared in the 1979 Chinese film Little Flower and came to the attention of American audiences for her performance in the 1987 film The Last Emperor, directed by Bernardo Bertolucci. On Sunday at 2 p.m., a double-feature screening of Tang Shu Shuen’s The Arch (1968) followed by Chen’s Xiu Xiu: The Sent-Down Girl (1998). A screening of The Last Emperor also takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets sold separately. Chen will be in attendance at all screenings.

An omelette topped with avocado with black beans and salsa on the side.
Madre launches a new brunch menu at its Torrance and West Hollywood locations.
(John Troxell)

Dine and Drink Deals

Check out the 411 on restaurant, bar, and food happenings in SoCal this week:

  • The 6th Annual Holiday Market at Smorgasburg LA begins this Sunday, running from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with goods from some of L.A.’s most popular makers and crafters. In addition to the market’s regular lineup of food vendors, the Holiday Food Gift SmorgasMART offers packaged foods. The holiday market runs weekly through Dec. 18. 
  • On Saturday, Nov. 26, Madre launches brunch at its Torrance and West Hollywood locations. Known for its Oaxacan cuisine and mezcal selections, the menu includes several vegetarian options, including chilaquiles, as well as meat options, such as huevos con chorizo, steak & eggs, and tostada de tinga con huevo. 
  • The Australian-owned eatery Great White recently opened its third location on Melrose in West Hollywood. The all-day cafe, helmed by Chilean chef Juan Ferreiro (formerly of Per Se), features menu items including Citrus & Burrata with pistachios, winter citrus, smoked oil, and sourdough; Chicken Shawarma with wood-fired pita bread, roasted cauliflower, pickled raisins, and labneh; Crispy Fish with roasted broccolini, marinated radish and brown butter miso.
  • Pasta Sisters, a family-owned restaurant and pasta shop, is offering a $5,000 reward to return their grandmother’s handwritten diary filled with recipes. The book was stolen during a break-in at the restaurant early Sunday morning.   
  • The bike-centered cafe Detroit Vesey’s was also broken into this week. Owner Erin Vesey is in the midst of preparing the restaurant for a move to a new location (it’s currently located on 7th St. in downtown L.A.). Visit their Instagram for ways to support the restaurant.
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