1. East Cobb Park Tree Lighting -- Holiday songs, cheer, Santa Claus, bell ringers and the lighting of a 40-foot park tree take place this Sunday, Dec. 4, starting at 5 p.m. It's the community's signature public commemoration of the holiday season, and the public is invited.
2. The Holiday Walk at Merchant's Walk -- East Cobb's newly redeveloped retail hub is holding its debut celebration of the season Thursday (today) starting at 6 p.m. A total of 15 retailers, including Whole Foods, The Cook's Warehouse and Marlow's Tavern, will have extended opening hours.
There also will be a holiday tree lighting starting at 6:30 p.m., along with music, prizes and a raffle.
3. The Sanders Family Christmas at Theatre in the Square will run through Jan. 1. The perennial favorite holiday show has the sunny-voiced Sanders Family back just before the beginning of World War II. They're quirky, saintly and delightfully melodic as they interpret everybody's favorite bluegrass gospel music. Back for the 13th holiday season. Recommended for the entire family ages 10 and up.
4. The Artist Attic Holiday Show and Sale takes place at The Art Place Mountain View through Dec. 17. The event includes all hand made items by TAP students, instructors and staff.
5. Join Santa and Mrs. Claus for the kick-off to the holiday season with the Christmas Tree Lighting, Thursday, Dec. 1. Festivities start at 5 p.m. in Glover Park in Marietta Square. Local school choruses will perform Christmas carols as children visit with Santa in the gazebo until 8 p.m. Santa will light the giant Christmas tree, donated by Big John’s Christmas Trees, at 6 p.m.
6. The Safe Path's Annual Community Holiday Open House takes place on Dec. 2 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at 736 Whitlock Ave. The event will include an awards ceremony recognizing individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to preventing child abuse and neglect in our community. Call 770-801-3465 for more information.
7. On Friday, Dec. 2 the Marietta Pilgrimage will present Ringing in our Silver Anniversary Gala, a glamorous black tie party and preview of the award-winning tour of homes. It will be a magical evening of dining, music and dancing.
8. The Marietta Pilgrimage Christmas Home Tour takes place Dec. 3 and Dec. 4. The tour features six private historic homes in the Whitlock Avenue Historic District filled with antique collections and decorated for the season. Homeowners invite you inside for a unique opportunity to discover how they incorporate these historic treasures into their everyday lives.
Tickets will be available for purchase the day of the tour at the Marietta Welcome Center or any of the tour homes. Tickets can be purchased for day tours, candlelight tours or a combination ticket including both.
Day Tour: $20
Candlelight Tour: $15
This enchanting production features toy soldiers, mischievous mice, Chinese dragons and even a Christmas tree that grows.
10. The Georgia Ballet will present a special Celebrity Benefit Performance on Dec. 3 at 7 p.m.
Appearing on stage for this one performance only:
- David Connell, President & CEO of Cobb Chamber of Commerce
- Earl Reece, Executive Director of Earl Smith Strand Theatre
- Holly Comer, Executive Director of YWCA of Northwest Georgia
- Kim Gresh, Chief Executive Office of S.A. White Oil Company
11. St. Nicks Cafe takes place at The Art Place Mountain View, 3330 Sandy Plains Rd., on Dec. 3from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The tickets are $10 and include meal, a play, visit with Santa and a holiday ornament for children. Breakfast shows are at 8:30 and 10:30 a.m.. The show will be All Through the House based on Twas the Night Before Christmas.
12. Bring the kids to Marietta Square to visit Santa’s Workshop on Dec. 3, 4, 10, 11, 17, 18 and 22 through 24. The workshop will be open Saturdays and weekdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Dec. 24 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be closed for lunch from 1:30 p.m. to 2 p.m.
Santa must leave at the designated hour each day to attend to holiday business, so be aware that the line will close one hour before closing. Photos with Santa are available.
For more information, call the Marietta Parks and Recreation Department at 770-794-5601.
13. The 11th annual Sleighbells on the Square 5K takes place Dec. 10 This is a Peachtree qualifying race. All proceeds will benefit the Children's Emergency Fund. The fee is $20 before Dec. 5 and $25 after Dec. 5. The race course will begin on the square and proceed along Cherokee Street to Freyer Drive to Pine Street to Allgood Road to Chicopee Drive to Margaret Avenue to Church Street to Lemon Street to Cherokee Street and ending on East Park Square.
The 5K starts at 8:30 a.m., the 1K starts at 9:15 a.m., the Tot Trot starts at 9:30 a.m. and awards will be presented at 9:35 a.m.
14. The 2011 Cobb Christmas Stuff-A-Bus takes place on Dec. 5 from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. and 1 to 2 p.m. at the Cobb County DOT. Help to Stuff-A-Buss with donations of money, new toys and gifts, non-perishable food items and gift certificates. Collection will occur on Dec. 6 from 9 to 10 a.m. onMarietta Square, on Dec. 6 from noon to 1 p.m. at the WellStar Windy Hill Hospital, on Dec. 7 from 10 to 11 a.m. at Durham Middle School, on Dec. 8 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the WellStarAdministration Building and Dec. 8 from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. at Southern Polytechnic State University.
15. St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church will be having an event Dec. 9 through Dec. 11 at Jim Miller Park.
16. Centerstage North's Holiday Show Got a Hankerin' for Holiday Hijinks? will take place Dec. 9 through Dec. 11 and Dec. 15 through 17. The Jones Hope Woeten Comedy will show at the Art Place Mountain View. Call 770-516-3330 for more information.
17. The 2011 Gingerbread Jam takes place on Saturday, Dec. 10 from noon to 8 p.m. at the Mansour Center. The holiday event features a local arts and crafts market, food, festivities and a gingerbread house competition with gingerbread houses on display throughout the entire event. The family friendly event benefits the Dare To Hope Foundation, an Atlanta-based non-profit working to better the lives of children with critical, rare, chronic and complex medical conditions.
Admission is a $5 donation for ages 13 and up; 12 and under are free.
18. At Santa's Art Studio on Dec. 10 from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., students create seasonal artwork while getting exposure to creative art teachers, different ideas, processes and art mediums. The even takes place at the Art Place Mountain View.
19. The Cobb Christmas Distribution at Jim Miller Park takes place Dec. 16 through Dec. 18.
20. The 1940's Radio Hour will run from Dec. 17 through Jan. 1. This beloved show was a hot hit in Theatre in the Square's very first season and went on for a 25-year-run. Now, after a five-year hiatus the old gang at WOV, Johnny, Ginger, Ann Pops, B.J., Wally and more, are back with the dance routines and swing music that are as rousing as they are heartwarming. All performances of The 1940's Radio Hour will take place at Southern Polytechnic State University, Joe Mack Wilson Student Center.
21. Jeffrey Butzer and T.T. Mahoney present a jazzy musical tribute to Vince Guaraldi’s A Charlie Brown Christmas. Special guests Sorry No Ferrari, perform The Ventures Christmas Album, the season’s favorites with a taste of ‘60s surf. The show will run at the Strand Theatre Tuesday, Dec. 20 at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Admission is $12 in advance and $15 the day of the event.
22. In the classic 1946 film It's a Wonderful Life, George Bailey has always wanted to leave Bedford Falls to see the world, but circumstances and his own good heart have led him to stay. He sacrificed his education for his brother’s, kept the family-run savings and loan business afloat, protected the town from the greed of the banker, Mr. Potter, and married his childhood sweetheart. As this compassionate but despairingly frustrated small-town man contemplates suicide one fateful Christmas Eve, his guardian angel intercedes and shows him what life would have been like for the residents of Bedford Falls is he had never lived.
The movie will play at the Strand on Dec. 21 at 8 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults and $7 for children, students and seniors.
23. Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas, starring Jim Carrey in the role of a green-faced curmudgeon who plots to steal the Yuletide from the innocent citizens of Whoville, will play at theStrand. There will be a live organ pops variety show of Christmas music and sing-alongs at 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 21. The movie will start at 3 p.m.
The Center for Family Resources needs the community’s help to stock their pantries for January, which is the lowest stocked month of the year. Admission to How the Grinch Stole Christmas is free if you bring five canned goods. Acceptable food listing is at www.earlsmithstrand.org.