Holly jolly holidays

The CN&R’s annual Festivities Guide to all the cheer and charity of season

Feel it yet? That little tingling sensation in the back of your throat, or the swollen sinuses, or even worse, a severe tightening of the chest? Y’know what you should do? Go out! Just as this time of year triggers the onset of one cold symptom or another, it also brings out an onslaught of big, fat community activities. So, if you have to be sick, at least you can have a warm crowd, and maybe a warm mug of cocoa to comfort you.

Plus, for many folks the time of year is a lot more painful than a stuffy head, so you might as well get all bundled up and head to spread some good cheer (in addition to those germs).

Music, theater, singing and dancing

Diane Reeves: Christmas Time is Here
Thursday, Dec. 1, 7:30pm. Chico Performances presents vocalist Diane Reeves doing a program of jazz and pop favorites for the holidays. Cost: $19-$24; $17 for seniors; $15 for students/children. Laxson Auditorium on the Chico State Campus. University Box Office: (530) 898-6333.

A Christmas Carol
Thursday-Sunday, through Dec. 17. Chico Theater Company’s Marc C. Edson retains the subtle humor of the Charles Dickens classic but sets Christmas Carol in modern times with Ebenezer Scrooge being replaced by Carol Scrooge. Shows at 7:30pm, Thurs.-Sat. and 2pm, Sun. Tickets: $15-$22; bargain Thursdays, $15.Chico Theater Company, 166 Eaton Road, Suite F. (530) 894-3CTC. www.chicotheatercompany.com.

Mrs. Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge
Shows Thurs.-Sat., 7:30pm, through Dec. 17. Chico Cabaret production follows Scrooge and the ghosts as they fumble through plotlines of Oliver Twist and It’s a Wonderful Life all while Mrs. Bob Cratchit plans on getting drunk and jumping off of the London Bridge. Written by Christopher Durang and directed by Phil Ruttenburg. Tickets: $15 ($10/students on Thursdays). Chico Cabaret, 2201 Pillsbury, Almond Orchard Shopping Center. Info: (530) 895-0245.

The Eight: Reindeer Monologues
Dec. 2-3 & 8-10, 10:30pm (additional 7:30 showing on Dec. 10). Chico Cabaret’s dark Christmas comedy is back. The Eight: Reindeer Monologues gets the dirt on Santa and his reindeer. Cost: $10. Chico Cabaret, 2201 Pillsbury, Almond Orchard Shopping Center. Info: (530) 895-0245.

Sing-a-long Messiah
Friday, Dec. 2. Audience participation is encouraged at this annual performance of Handel’s Messiah. Dan Valdez conducts Butte College band. Cost: $8-$10; $8 for students/children. Paradise Performing Arts Center, 777 Nunneley Rd., Paradise. (530) 872-8454.

Christmas in Paradise
Saturday-Sunday, Dec. 3-4. Sam Gronseth conducts the Paradise Community Chorus in a program of holiday favorites. Sat. evening show at 7:30pm and Sun. matinee at 2pm. Tickets: $8/general. Paradise Performing Arts Center, 777 Nunneley Rd., Paradise. (530) 872-8454. More info: (530) 877-1311.

Chico High Winter Concert
Sunday, Dec. 4, 7:30pm. Chico High’s Symphonic Band Winter Concert will feature performances by the jazz ensemble and percussion ensemble. Tickets: $7, available from CHS band students and at the door. Laxson Auditorium on the Chico State campus. Info: (530) 345-9452.

Magic Slim concert fundraiser
Tues., Dec. 6, 7:30pm. Chico State’s Business school hosts a fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish foundation with “the last real Chicago blues band,” Magic Slim and The Teardrops. 40 Watt Hype opens. Tickets: $10. Available at Diamond W Western Wear, downtown Chico. BMU Auditorium on the Chico State campus. Info: (530) 898-5272.

Paradise Elementary School Winter Celebration
Thursday, Dec. 8, 7pm. Paradise Elementary School’s band and choir’s annual holiday program. Admission: free. Paradise Performing Arts Center, 777 Nunneley Rd., Paradise. (530) 872-8454. More info: (530) 877-1311.

A Christmas Extravaganza
Friday-Saturday, Dec. 9-10, 7:30pm. Kathy Neal’s Creative Arts Centre presents a holiday program of drama, caroling, dancers and more. Tickets: $6/general. Info: (530) 534-1478; 533-1043. Oroville State Theater, 1489 Myers St., Oroville Box office: (530) 538-2470.

Glorious Sounds of the Season
Friday-Sunday, Dec. 9-11. This is the season’s biggie. Chico State’s School of the Arts pulls out all the stops for this concert of holiday favorites. Performers include the 200-voice Choral Union, Gospel Choir, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Jazz X-Press, faculty ensembles, University organ and the Children’s Choir of Chico. Fri./Sat. shows are at 7:30pm and Sun. show is at 2pm. Cost: $20. Harlen Adams Theatre on the Chico State campus; University Box Office: (530) 898-6333.

Merrill Osmond Christmas Spectacular
Saturday, Dec. 10, 7pm. Yes, he’s one of those Osmonds. In a benefit performance for Feather River Hospital, Merrill Osmond will be performing his Branson, Mo. Christmas show. Tickets: $30-$75, or $125 for VIP tix and reception with Merrill. Paradise Performing Arts Center, 777 Nunneley Rd., Paradise. (530) 872-8454. More info: (530) 876-7166.

Music of the Season
Sunday, Dec. 11, 3pm. Chico Community Band plays Music of the Season. Free Admission. First Christian Church, 295 E. Washington. Info: (530) 343-5481.

Riders in the Sky: Christmas the Cowboy Way
Tuesday, Dec. 13, 7:30pm. Classic western warblers and slapstick troupe Riders in the Sky brings its shtick to Chico State thanks to Chico Performances. Cost: $20-$25; seniors, $21; students/children, $17. Laxson Auditorium on the Chico State campus; University Box Office: (530) 898-6333.

The Yule Logs
Thursday, Dec. 15 & Saturday, Dec. 17. Don’t miss The Yule Logs, “Chico’s premier Christmas/pop rock band,” featuring members of La Dolce Vita and Electric Pie Band, as they take advantage of season that is the reason. Dec. 15, 9pm at Off Limits, and Dec. 17, 8pm at Café Flo. For info: www.myspace.com/theyulelogs.

The Nutcracker
Friday-Sunday, Dec. 16-18. The Northern California Ballet is joined by guest artists from Russia, Idaho and Texas for the holiday classic The Nutcracker. Four show times: Fri./Sat. at 7:15pm and Sat./Sun., at 2:15pm. Tickets: $15-$18/general; $7child/student. Paradise Performing Arts Center, 777 Nunneley Rd., Paradise. (530) 872-8454.

Community events

Community Tree Lighting
Friday, Dec. 2, 6pm. You can’t miss the big Christmas tree. It is one of the only trees left in the Downtown Park. Due to the renovation of the park, festivities will be held across the street by the city council chambers. Local choral groups, Santa Claus and Mayor Scott Gruendl will be on hand for the annual public tree lighting. Downtown Park Plaza. Info: (530) 345-6500.

Oroville Christmas Parade
Saturday, Dec. 10, 6pm. Oroville’s 11th annual Olde Fashioned Lighted Christmas Parade. Oroville businesses and organizations decorate cars, trucks, horses and themselves. Bird & Myers Streets, downtown Oroville.

Special events

Victorian Christmas
Friday-Sunday, Dec. 2-4. Experience Christmas as it might have looked during Victorian times at the preserved Stansbury Home. Tours run 5-9pm on Dec. 2 and 1-5pm Dec. 3-4. Tickets $6 at door; children, $1. Stansbury Home, 307 W. 5th Street. (530) 895-3848.

Live walk through Nativity
Friday-Saturday, Dec. 2-3. Step back in time for a live nativity scene. Pet the animals and sing carols. Seventh Day Adventist Church, 1180 Robinson Street, Oroville. (530) 533-4461.

Chico Cabaret’s satirical black comedy, </i>The Eight: Reindeer Monologues,<i> shows Dec. 2-3 & 8-10, 10:30pm (additional 7:30 showing on Dec. 10).

Christmas in the Clouds
Dec. 2, 3, 10, 17 and 18, 2pm matinee. Christmas in the Clouds is a romantic holiday movie shot on Robert Redford’s Sundance Resort, and featuring a predominantly Native American cast. Presented by the Bidwell Junior High School Foundation. Tickets: $5 ($3/children). Pageant Theatre, 351 E. 6th Street. Info: (530) 321-2385.

Mistletoe Party
Sunday, Dec. 4, 1-4pm. Friends of the Parks presents the 37th annual holiday event, with The Presbyterian Church bell ringers, gifts from Santa and hot spiced tea and cookies. Lott Home, 1067 Montgomery Street, Oroville. Info: (530) 891-3313.

Frontier Christmas
Saturday, Dec. 3, Noon-4pm. It’s Christmas, only Pioneer style at the Frontier Christmas at Lake Oroville. You’ll be able to meet Santa and buy holiday food and crafts still, but there will also be pioneer games to play, gold panning and pioneer music. Free admission. Lake Oroville Visitor Center, Lake Oroville. (530) 538-2219.

Holiday Wine Tasting and Auction
Thursday, Dec. 8, 6-10pm. The Oroville Chamber of Commerce presents its annual art auction and wine tasting, featuring area art and wines. Cost: $20-$30. Southside Oroville Community Center, 2959 Lower Wyandotte Avenue, Oroville. Info: (530) 538-2542.

Breakfast With Santa (Twice!)
First: Saturday, Dec. 10, 8-11am. For only $5 have a pancake breakfast and get your picture taken with Santa (parents can eat too, for additional $2 each). CARD is holding three pancake/photo sessions at 8am, 9am and 10am. CARD Community Center, 545 Vallombrosa Ave. (530) 895-4711.
Second: Sunday, Dec. 11, 9am-1pm. The Sunshine Kids Club has holiday music, raffle prizes and gifts, and pancakes and pictures with Santa. Tickets: $8, available at Sutter-Buttes Communication, Kids Kingdom and Campus Bicycles. Eagles Hall, 20th & Mulberry Streets. Info: (530) 891-3618.

Artists, artisans and Fair Trade

Oroville Friends of the Library book and bake sale
Friday & Saturday, Dec. 2 & Dec. 3. Give the gift of reading plus get a treat for yourself at the quarterly book and bake sale. 10am-3:30pm on Fri. and 8:30am-3:30pm on Sat. Oroville Library, Mitchell and Lincoln Streets, Oroville. Info: (530) 533-5754.

Holiday Bazaar
Friday-Saturday, Dec. 2-3, 9am-3pm (till noon on Sat.). The women of the church will be selling craft items, collectibles, candy and stuff from the country store—plus, food, coffee and treat. Proceeds go to ten local charities. Trinity United Methodist Church, 5th & Flume Streets.

Cottage Artisans
Friday-Sunday, Dec. 2-4. Chico Art Center’s 23rd annual holiday craft/artisan sale, featuring fine woodworking, clay jewelry, pottery, batik, metal fabrication, mosaics and more. Hours: Fri., 4pm-9pm; Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 10am-4pm. Chico Art Center, 450 Orange Street.

The Christmas Faire
Friday-Sunday, Dec. 2-4. Arts, crafts, entertainment, food and beverages. And, Santa every day at this huge Chico tradition! Fri., noon-8pm; Sat., 10am-6pm; Sun., 10am-5pm. Admission: $3 ($1/seniors; children/free). Silver Dollar Fairgrounds. Info: (530) 345-9652.

Off the Lawn #3
Saturday, Dec. 3, 9am-5pm. The local crafting hipsters have been busy for the holidays so that you can buy one-of-a-kind gifts this year. Plus, live music! Subud Hall, 574 E. 12th Street. Info: offthelawn@hotmail.com.

Holiday Craft Faire
Saturday, Dec. 3, 10am-6pm. KRBS F.M. hosts 4th Annual Holiday Craft Faire. Live music provided. First Congregational Church, 1715 Bird Street. Info: (530) 534-0400.

Christmas Arts & Crafts Faire
Saturday-Sunday, Dec. 3-4, 10am-6pm. Arts & Crafts Faire fundraiser for Paradise Ridge Senior Center. Sat., 9am-4pm & Sun., 10am-3pm. Paradise Senior Center, 877 Nunneley Road, Paradise. (530) 877-1733.

Christmas Artisan’s Craft Fair
Saturday, Dec. 10, 10am-5pm. A Christmas arts and craft Fair. Open Saturday, 9am-4pm and Sunday, 10am-3pm. Oroville Municipal Auditorium, 1200 Myers Street. Info: (530) 871-8551.

Mysterious Objets d’art
Sunday, Dec. 11, 4-6pm. Come see over 100 mysterious objets d’art created by 1078 Gallery artists and board members from the studio materials of local artist Steve Miranda. The pieces will be for sale, and would make the perfect unique gift. 1078 Gallery, 738 W. Fifth Street. (530) 343-1943.

Fair Trade Store
Chico Peace & Justice Center’s Fair Trade Store is open throughout the holidays. Hand-made gifts from the around the world, without a guilty conscience! All of the items in the store are certified to come from sources that provide living wages and promote fair labor practices. Everything from toys, instruments, tapestries and jewelry to coffee, tea and chocolate is available. Store hours: Monday-Friday, 1-7pm. Chico Peace & Justice Center, 526 Broadway. (530) 893-9078. www.chico-peace.org.