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15 fabulous things to do in NYC this weekend

Written by
Jennifer Picht

Fri 15

Wasabassco’s House of Deveraux: Holiday Rock Spectacular Le Poisson Rouge; 8pm; $20
Count on the city’s greatest burlesque crew, Wasabassco, to deliver a night of devious and decadent aerialism and strip-tease that would make any reindeer’s nose turn red. Shimmering diva Sydni Deveraux welcomes Amanda Whip, Nasty Canasta, Chris Harder, Maine Attraction Medianoche and more to show off their kinkiest tinsel.

The Xmas Pop Sing-Along Union Hall; 9:30pm; $10
Wet your whistle with some complimentary milk and cookies and give the gift of your voice at this giant sing-along shindig. The big man in red himself hosts as he leads the crowds through their favorite hits by the likes of Bing Crosby, the Jackson 5 and Mariah Carey. Go all-out with your wardrobe choices: There’s a competition for both the best Santa costume and worst holiday sweater. Throw back a few Xmas cocktails like the Santa’s Sleigh, Egg Nog and Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer—you’ll need the liquid courage to win the prize for being the most naughty.

Largest Menorah Lighting and Kickoff Grand Army Plaza; 3:30pm; free
To commence eight nights of lightings at the massive menorah by Prospect Park, Chabad Park Slope invites Israeli rock crew Moshav to light up the crowd on Tuesday 12. Show up every night through December 20 for classic Hanukkah songs, free latkes and the chance to see a candle-lighting so immense that it requires a crane.

Never Sleep Alone Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater; midnight; $45, participants $35, plus $12 minimum
Grand mistress of getting you laid Dr. Alex Schiller (conceived and played by Roslyn Hart) calls you onstage to complete matchmaking challenges, kiss strangers and drop your inhibitions at this live musical comedy seminar. Bring your A-game for the after-party.

Sat 16

What the Dickens? Eighth Annual A Christmas Carol Marathon Housing Works Bookstore Cafe; noon; free
Housing Works welcomes musicians, writers and performers to invoke Ebenezer Scrooge and his ghosts. Before the performers dig into Dickens, the New York City Master Chorale stops by for some ace caroling. Then the reading begins, with writers giving their take on the infamous miser. All store items are 10 percent off, so bring your holiday list. Bah, humbug!

Harry and the Potters: Yule Ball The Bell House; 5pm; $20
Polish your wand and steam those dress robes: It’s time to party as if you just passed your OWLs. This themed bash, hosted by the wizard rockers Harry and the Potters, gives Muggles and nerds the chance to come together and get down. Get revved up for spilled Solo cups of Butterbeer and bespectacled Brooklynites shaking it to Potter-lovin’ bands like the Moaning Myrtles and Kwikspell.

Morbid Anatomy Annual Krampus Party Brooklyn Bazaar; 8pm; $20
Morbid Anatomy and Ghoul a Go-Go return with their annual holiday soiree celebrating Santa's sinister European counterpart, the horned, kid-punishing Krampus. While all the good boys and girls wait around for a visit from ol' St. Nick doing whatever it is they do (make gingerbread houses?), us baddies can sip themed drinks, have a laugh with actor Glen Heroy and Kevin Mahler of the video variety show Kevin Geeks Out, compete in a costume contest, catch live performances, nibble on Krampus cake and cut loose to tunes from DJ Friese Undine. Being naughty never felt so nice.

Menorah Horah! Drom; 6:30pm, 9pm; $25, at the door $30
Droll, dirty and delectably clever, the Schlep Sisters (Minnie Tonka and Darlinda Just Darlinda) can always be counted on to serve the hottest Jewish burlesque in town. For the tropical-themed version of their yearly Hanukkah blowout, they welcome fellow dames and divas Evil Hate Monkey, Dangrrr Doll, Cassandra Rosebeetle, Lil’ Miss Lixx, Cherry Pitz, Fancy Feast and host Bastard Keith to get lit by the menorah.

I Needed You Film Screening The VNYL; 6pm; free
Support the arts and local creatives at this short film screening hosted by Che Morales. The woman of the hour is thriving filmmaker Tannis Spencer who premiered her first short film Curtis at the Nitehawk Shorts Festival this year. Watch her latest work, I Needed You, followed by a screening of Curtis. (That's right, it's a double feature!) The night includes a Q&A moderated by Rory Farrell of Joe Budden Podcast and concludes with sick tunes provided by DJ Kenneth Kyrell. Turn up!

Sun 17

Brooklyn Cookie Takedown The Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club; noon; $25
Drown your sorrows in dough at this amateur bakeoff, where you'll be partaking in confections with oddball flavors like blue cheese and bacon (past prizes have gone to a saltine covered in fudge and caramel). “People aren’t trying to be weird as much as they’re trying to be yummy,” says Takedown founder Matt Timms. If you've got your own cookie creation to show off, you can still register on the Takedowns site.

Merry Tuba Christmas Rockefeller Plaza; 3:30pm; free
Now in its 44th year, this massive musical gathering invites hundreds of tuba players to perform classic Christmas carols and crowd-pleasing songs on the ice. If you’re not a pro at circular breathing, join in on the fun by singing along to the deep horns. Though the event has spread to more than 200 cities worldwide, there’s nothing like seeing it at its home: 30 Rockefeller Plaza.

Sugar x Spice Holiday Market Brooklyn Bazaar; 1pm; free
Head to the Brooklyn Bazaar for this free market featuring local vendors, where you can hop in a photo booth, get a tarot reading and catch a dance performance. Consider showing up early: the first 20 people through the door and get a gift bag, which, given the season, could become a re-gift bag. We won't judge.

An Evening of Art and Astrology Museum of Modern Art (MoMA); 7pm; $20
Learn about the astrological and occult inspirations and synchronicities of artists Leonardo da Vinci and Charles White at this talk and tour.

The JQY Chanukah Concert Congregation Rodeph Sholom Synagogue; 6pm; $60
To raise funds for JQY—a nonprofit that provides support for LGBTQ Orthodox Jewish teenagers—alt-reggae superstar Matisyahu gathers with soulful singers Neshama Carlebach and Eli Schwebel for a banging night of old-school and reinvented melodies.

Unsilent Night Washington Square Park; 6pm; free
This trippy musical performance piece, dreamed up by composer Phil Kline, is downtown’s decidedly arty, secular answer to Christmas caroling. Boom-box–toting participants gather under the Washington Square arch, where they are given a cassette or CD of one of four different atmospheric tracks; you can also download the Unsilent Night app and sync up via smartphone. Everyone presses play at the same time and marches through the streets of New York together, blending their music and filling the air with a beautiful, echoing 45-minute piece.

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