Top Los Angeles Things to Do in December

Dance of snowflakes at The Nutcracker Los Angeles, in several locations….

This December, Los Angeles is bringing you the Hollywood Christmas Parade, Marina Del Rey Holiday Boat Parade, Prohibition NYE and more… See our list of 20+ top things to do in L.A. this month.

Edited by Alicia Luchak.

 

 

The Hollywood Christmas Parade 
Dec. 1. Welcome the holidays at this annual parade, complete with a concert beforehand and a celebrity grand marshal. The procession winds through Hollywood and features floats, balloons, characters, marching bands and equestrians. Concert 5 pm; parade 6 pm. Grandstand tickets $22-$85. The route starts on Hollywood Boulevard at Orange Drive and travels east to Vine Street, south on Vine to Sunset Boulevard and west on Sunset, back to Orange. 866.727.2331, thehollywoodchristmasparade.org

 

Los Angeles Auto Show 
Through Dec. 1. Test-drive the auto industry’s latest models and explore 1,000 vehicles at this annual car show—one of the world’s largest. Check website for hours. $6-$35; VIP Guided Tours $35-$85, under 6 free. Los Angeles Convention Center, 1201 S. Figueroa St., downtown, 310.444.1850, laautoshow.com

 

The Nutcracker
Dec. 1, 7-8, 13-15, 20-24, 28-29. The Los Angeles Ballet performs the beloved holiday tale about Clara and her Nutcracker—set in 1912 Los Angeles— at the Alex Theatre, Royce Hall at UCLA, Dolby Theatre and Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center. The Dolby Theatre shows feature performances by the Los Angeles Ballet Orchestra. See website for schedule and ticket information. Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale, 818.243.2539; Royce Hall at UCLA, 10745 Dickson Court, L.A., 310.825.4401; Dolby Theatre, Hollywood & Highland, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323.308.6300; Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center, 1935 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Redondo Beach, 310.937.6607, Tickets

 

The Nutcracker, Los Angeles Ballet

 

Unique Markets Holiday Pop-Up
Dec. 1, 14-15. At Unique Markets’ holiday pop-ups (Nov. 30-Dec. 1 at Hudson Loft, Dec. 14-15 at the Santa Monica Pier), shop the wares of hundreds of the best local independent designers and emerging brands, who’ll be selling home decor, clothing, jewelry, art, food, beauty and wellness items, stationery, kids items and more. There will also be free drinks, snacks, holiday portraits and gift wrapping. 10 am-5 pm. Daily admission $15; VIP $35, under 12 free. Hudson Loft, 1200 S. Hope St., downtown; Santa Monica Pier, 200 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, uniquemarkets.com

 

Disney’s Frozen
Opening Dec. 4
Bring the kids to the Pantages to see the popular animated film Frozen come to life onstage. The Tony-nominated Broadway musical based on the wintry Disney favorite arrives in Hollywood. Expect to hear the film’s catchy songs, plus an expanded score with a dozen new numbers. Hollywood Pantages Theatre, 6233 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323.468.1770 Tickets

 

Echo Park Craft Fair
Dec. 6-8. This popular homegrown arts and design event—celebrating its 10th anniversary here—showcases the wares of talented local artisans. Shop for jewelry, clothes, ceramics, perfume and more. A portion of all ticket sales benefit Inner City Arts. Friday Preview Party 6-9 pm; Sa-Su 10 am-6 pm. Preview Party $35; one day $15; weekend pass $24, under 13 free. Mack Sennett Studios, 1215 Bates Ave., L.A., echoparkcraftfair.com 

 

Ciclavia— The Valley 
Dec. 8. Five miles of L.A.’s normally congested streets turn into a car-free park for a walk and bike tour through Canoga Park, Winnetka and Reseda during this San Fernando Valley iteration of the beloved open-streets event. See website for route details. 9 am-3 pm. Free. 213.355.8500, ciclavia.org

 

Manhattan Beach fireworks display at their annual holiday festivities

Manhattan Beach Holiday Fireworks
Dec. 8. The picturesque beachside city’s annual holiday celebration features a Skechers-sponsored snow park, a Santa float and live music, capped off by a fireworks show over the pier. Snow park, float 4 pm; fireworks 7 pm. Free (new, unwrapped toy, cash donation or canned foods to benefit the YMCA Adventure Guides Toy Drive requested for snow-park admission). 2 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Manhattan Beach, mbfireworks.com

 

She & Him Christmas Tour
Dec. 13-14. A very indie Christmas with She & Him at The Theatre at Ace Hotel. $40.50-$100.50 Doors open at 7:00 pm, Show at 8 p.m. 929 S. Broadway, downtown, 213.623.3233 Tickets

 

Holiday Market
Dec. 14-15. Get some last-minute holiday shopping in at this marketplace at hip Hauser & Wirth gallery in the Arts District. Vendors include Milla Chocolates and Otherwild. hauserwirth.com

 

Marina Del Rey Holiday Boat Parade
Dec. 14. The theme of this year’s annual parade of decorated boats, preceded by a fireworks show, is “Kids Make Holidays Bright.” Fireworks 5:55 pm; parade 6-8 pm. Beforehand, enjoy real snow, sledding, arts and crafts, face painting, a live DJ and food trucks in the park from 11 am-4 pm. Free. Burton Chace Park, 13650 Mindanao Way, Marina del Rey, 310.670.7130, mdrboatparade.org

 

WearNYLA Holiday Pop-Up Shop
Through Dec. 23.
For the next month, you can amp up your winter wardrobe (or buy your family and friends the perfect holiday gifts) at WearNYLA, the chic online label turned pop-up store. Try on and buy your favorite pieces from the site in-person while enjoying exclusive perks like special discounts and complimentary gift wrapping, all while meeting the ladies behind the contemporary online boutique. Plus: This Friday through Monday, use code UNWRAP30 for 30% off the entire website. Open daily 9 a.m.- 9 p.m. 1241 3rd St. Promenade, Santa Monica. wearnyla.com

 

L.A. County Holiday Celebration 
Dec. 24. 
This annual free show— celebrating its 60th anniversary this year— returns to Dorothy Chandler Pavilion with bands, choirs and dancers who represent L.A.’s many cultures. 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown, 213.972.7211 dorothychandlerpavilion.net

 

Behind the scenes at the Rose Parade

 

Tournament of Roses 
Dec. 26- Jan. 1. Float decorating, Bandfest, Equestfest, Sip & Savor, 131st Rose Parade (Jan. 1, 8 am), 106th Rose Bowl Game (Jan. 1, 1 pm). Free curbside viewing of parade on first-come, first-served basis; grandstand seats for $60-$110 on sharpseating.com. Rose Bowl tickets start at $160. Check website for detailed schedule, locations and tickets for other events. 626.449.4100, tournamentofroses.com

 

Love Actually Live 
Through Dec. 29. 
For the Record brings the beloved British holiday rom-com to life at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. For the Record’s first-of-its-kind, theatrical cinema experience brings the beloved Christmas film Love Actually to life with carols and pop hits performed by an all-star cast of singers and an orchestra. Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, 310.746.4000 Tickets

Rex Smith as Billy Mack and Company in Love Actually Live

 

Ever Bar’s Winter Get-Away Cocktails 
Through Dec. 31. Sip on cozy chalet-themed drinks at Ever Bar’s holiday pop up. From now through the new year, listen to the rotating lineup of live musicians while you peruse the new menu for cocktails with fun names like Gengerbread Man, Boots with the Fur, the Hans Gruber Eggnog and more. Visit the website for full cocktail menu and performance schedule. 
4 p.m. to close. The Everly, 1800 Argyle Ave., Hollywood. everlyhotelhollywood.com

 

New Year’s Eve: Past & Present 
Through Dec. 31. 
Welcome the new year at the Queen Mary, where you can step into past decades with live music, dancing, a speakeasy and a midnight fireworks show. 1126 Queens Hwy., Long Beach, 877.342.0738 queenmary.com

 

Prohibition NYE 
Dec. 31. 
Union Station travels back in time to the Roaring ’20s with this fabulous fete. Don your flapper finest and enjoy burlesque shows, live jazz ensembles and an open bar. prohibitionnye.com

 

The Bai Holiday Ice Rink Pershing Square 
All month. All month Skate among the skyscrapers at this iceskating rink, which materializes every holiday season at Pershing Square. See website for full schedule of free community and special events, hours, skate-session schedule and prices. 532 S. Olive St., downtown, holidayicerinkdowntownla.com

Bai Holiday Ice Rink in Pershing Square

 

Ice Presented by Plaza at Santa Monica 
All month. This 8,000-square-foot outdoor skating rink in downtown Santa Monica brings holiday spirit to the beach every winter. M-Th 2-10 pm; F 2 pm-midnight; Sa 10 am-midnight; Su 10 am-10 pm. Admission, including skate rental, $15. 1324 Fifth St., Santa Monica, 310.260.1199, downtownsm.com

 

Melrose Rooftop Theatre
All month. For the holidays, this alfresco film series is screening family- friendly festive favorites on select weeknights on the rooftop of hot spot E.P. & L.P. Enjoy a custom menu and specialty cocktails from the restaurant, along with views of the Hollywood Hills. VIP Dinner & a Movie package offers a three-course modern Asian meal at E.P. Dinner & a Movie 6 pm; theater opens 7:15 pm; movie 8 pm. $27.50-$35. E.P. & L.P., 603 N. La Cienega Blvd., West Hollywood, 310.855.9955, melroserooftoptheatre.com

 

Rooftop Cinema Club
All month. The U.K.’s “Number One Outdoor Cinema Series” returns to the rooftops of Hollywood’s private Neue House and downtown’s Level for its fifth season in L.A. Fill up on street food and drinks while you take in views and enjoy holiday classics both new and old this month. See website for full lineup and schedule. Ages 18+. $17-$25. 6121 Sunset Blvd., L.A.; 888 S. Olive St., downtown, rooftopcinemaclub.com

 

Photos: The Nutcracker credit Reed Hutchinson. Manhattan Fireworks courtesy @mbparksandrec/Facebook. Tournament of Roses  courtesy The Pasadena Tournament of Roses.  Love Actually Live credit Kevin Parry. Bai Holiday Ice Rink courtesy Red Apple Photography.

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