Our favorite Christmas events and holiday activities
Brace yourself: Christmas is coming to the Grove. L.A.’s shopping mall metropolis lights up its Christmas tree with a slew of special guests—including Santa himself. May we humbly suggest that you ask Santa this year for a prime spot in that mammoth parking garage. Stick around for the fireworks finale.
L.A. doesn’t typically seem like much of a winter wonderland, until, that is, you create an ice skating rink right in the midst of Downtown skyscrapers and L.A. icons. Come glide and pretend there’s snow on the ground at Pershing Square’s outdoor holiday skating rink—one of the biggest in the city. Look out for special events throughout the season, like curling lessons, a silent disco skate and DJ nights. RECOMMENDED: The best places to go ice skating in Los Angeles
The beloved Bob Baker Marionette Theater may be leaving behind its longtime home, but it’s not ditching its annual holiday production. For the first time since opening in 1969, the charming play and its 100-plus handmade puppets move off-site with this staging at the Pasadena Playhouse.
Have a crafty start to the Christmas shopping season at CAFAM’s annual holiday marketplace. If you’re making a list and checking it twice, consider this shopping event for unique handmade gifts and an opportunity to meet the emerging and established makers behind them.
Like an Angelyne billboard on Sunset Boulevard, the Hollywood Christmas Parade is an essential part of L.A. kitsch. The nearly nine-decade–old parade will feature floats, balloons, bands, equestrians and celebrities as they ride in a U-shaped route that begins at Hollywood and Orange and ends up at Sunset and Orange. Reserved grandstand seats can be purchased, with proceeds going to Toys for Tots, but free curbside seating is also available.
KIIS FM’s annual holiday behemoth’s lineup reads like a roll call of the station’s playlist: Shawn Mendes, Cardi B, Calvin Harris, Camila Cabello, Khalid, Dua Lipa, G-Eazy, Alessia Cara, Bazzi and Bebe Rexha will all take over the Forum this holiday season. The best seats will cost you a boatload, so look out for the free pre-show, Jingle Ball Village.
Silver Lake's darling restaurant and pantry shop is throwing its first-ever holiday market, and the team is celebrating vendors from the community. Want to shop local? Here are the cute, curated and L.A.-made gifts you've been looking for: ceramics from Paperclip Pottery, natural cosmetics by Paige Wentling, wreaths and bespoke bouquets from Whit Hazen, aprons, table linens and more from Suay Sew Shop, and a selection of novels, cookbooks and children's books from The Lev. While you're there, you might as well pick up a few spices, cookbooks and aprons for yourself. You've earned it.
Feel as though you've escaped to a small-town fishing village during the Marina Del Rey Boat Parade. Bring a blanket and gather around Fisherman’s Village or Burton Chace Park to watch as 70 boats glide through the marina with holiday lights and decorations in competition. Categories include Best Theme, Best Animation, Best Band, Best Lights and more. The festivities begin at 5:55pm with fireworks, and the boat parade starts at 6pm, rain or shine. RECOMMENDED: Where to see Christmas lights in Los Angeles
Any crafter worth her weight in cashmere yarn knows that Renegade Craft Fair is the fair all other fairs aspire to. Renegade hosts an epic holiday fairs in wintertime to help you check everyone off your gift list—including yourself.
Reserve a spot in your weekend for the latest installment of this Pinterester’s Utopia. Hosted at Mack Sennett Studios, the Echo Park Craft Fair returns, welcoming artsy Eastsiders for a feast of hand-dyed clothing and delicately concocted bath oils, one-of-a-kind ceramics, weavings, jewelry and beyond.