Local groups waste little time in shifting from Thanksgiving to the December holiday season. The coming week finds a number of Christmas events and holiday choral concerts planned in the local area.

WINTERLIT — Santa Monica’s Winterlit display, where the downtown Third Street Promenade is transformed into a faux winter wonderland with bright green illuminated trees adorned with colored light sets on white snow peaks, opened Tuesday, November 22nd. Bayside District Corporation has planned events to coincide with the display.

Santa Monica Place mall will host “Pet Night with Santa,” an opportunity for families to have their pets photographed with Santa Claus, from 4 to 8 p.m. Mondays, December 5th and 12th. Photo packages are $10.50 and up. Organizers say “celebrity pets” and “pet personalities” will be on hand for the entertainment of the crowd.

A holiday fashions modeling contest for males and females age seven to 23 is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, December 6th, inside Santa Monica Place. Twenty-five winning contestants will then return for choreographed holiday fashion shows scheduled for 2 and 3:30 p.m. Sunday, December 11th, outdoors on the Third Street Promenade at Broadway in Santa Monica. Spectator admission is free.

“Winterlit Fun,” a family event with falling snow, an ice carving contest, pony rides and a petting zoo, will take place from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, December 10th, at Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica.

Information, (310) 393-8355.

SANTA’S VILLAGE — Santa’s Village and the Festival of Trees is back again for its third year and will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Visitation School, 8740 Emerson Ave., Westchester. Admission is free.

The family festival features an arrival by Mrs. Claus and the Clausettes on the “North Pole Express” at 10 a.m. and Santa with his elves at 10:30 a.m.

The event features Christmas themed family activities such as gingerbread cookie decorating, toy workshops, face painting, letters to Santa, a coloring contest, Mrs. Claus bakery and a Christmas tree lot.

The event will have a contest and auction of themed Christmas trees.

Information, (310) 994-9904.

CHRISTMAS WREATH SALE — The Westchester Y’s Men’s Club has scheduled a Christmas wreath fundraiser from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, December 3rd, at the Westchester Family YMCA, 8040 Sepulveda Blvd., Westchester.

Information, (310) 670-6359.

FIVE GOLDEN RINGS — An 18th annual holiday jewelry and ethnic crafts fair presented by local artists will feature handcrafted items, origami, ceramics and hand-woven fabrics from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, December 4th, at the Church in Ocean Park, 235 Hill St., Santa Monica. Admission is free.

Information, (213) 382-2223.

MESSIAH CONCERT — For the past 35 years, Westchester Lutheran Church has been presenting holiday performances of George Frederic Handel’s Messiah. This year is no exception. The 36th annual performance of Messiah, directed by choir leader Marshall Ramirez, is scheduled for 4 p.m. Sunday, December 4th, at the Westchester Lutheran Church, 7831 Sepulveda Blvd., Westchester. The performance will feature soloists from the Pacific Chorale and choir members from local churches. Soloists include soprano Suzanne Lawrence, tenor Gabriel Silva, bass Lewis Landau and countertenor Joseph Mathieu. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children.

Information, (310) 670-5422.

CHANCEL CHOIR — “A Christmas Celebration” concert featuring the Santa Monica Methodist Church Chancel Choir is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, December 3rd and 4th, at the First United Methodist Church, 1008 11th St., Santa Monica.

Suggested donation is $15 for general admission and $10 for students and senior citizens.

The concert will feature special guest narrator Peter Graves, actor and host of A&E’s Biography cable television show.

Information, (310) 393-8258.

COMMUNITY HOLIDAY CONCERT — A community concert with holiday songs performed by musician Craig Newton is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, December 7th, at the Lloyd Taber-Marina del Rey Library, 4533 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey. Admission is free.

Information, (310) 821-3415.

A CHRISTMAS STORY — The classic comical holiday memoir A Christmas Story, which follows nine-year-old Ralphie Parker on his quest to get a genuine Red Ryder BB gun, is being performed at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday; and 2 p.m. Saturday, December 1st to 3rd, at the Westchester High School Theater, 7400 Manchester Ave., Westchester.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for children and seniors.

Information, (310) 692-0006.

HOLIDAZZLE — Holidazzle, a holiday presentation by eight children’s book artists and illustrators is scheduled for 5 to 9 p.m. Friday; 3 and 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, December 2nd to 4th, at 453 11th St., Santa Monica.

Artists include Marcela Cabrera, Diane Greenseid, Julie Williams, Barbara Bottner, Maggie Smith, Kathryn Hewitt, Joyce Wheeler and Anthea Brown. Admission is free.

Information, (310) 450-6406.

MANSFIELD CHAMBER SINGERS — The Mansfield Chamber Singers present a holiday choral concert, under the direction of Kenneth Wells, featuring a performance of Christmas carols, sacred texts and Schubert’s Mass in G, at 4 p.m. Sunday, December 4th, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 958 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica.

Donations are requested.

Information, (310) 471-1247.

VINTAGE HOLIDAY CARDS — A sale and show of vintage Christmas cards and photographs of old Venice, organized by the Venice Historical Society, is scheduled from noon to 4 p.m. at Beyond Baroque, 681 Venice Blvd., Venice. Admission is free.

Information, (310) 822-3006.

CHORALIERS CONCERT — A holiday concert by The Choraliers, a 30-voice choral group, to benefit the OPCC Access Center, is scheduled for 8 p.m. Wednesday, December 7th, at the First Presbyterian Church, 1220 Second St., Santa Monica. Admission is free with a canned food item or donations are requested. Information, (310) 264-6646 ext. 235.

ALL ABOUT SANTA — All About Santa, a children’s holiday musical featuring elves Elvina and Elivia, written and directed by Evelyn Rudie and Chris DeCarlo, is being performed at 12:30 and 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through December 18th; and 2 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, December 20th and 22nd, at the Santa Monica Playhouse, 1211 Fourth St., Santa Monica.

Tickets are $12 for adults and $10.50 for children. Information, (310) 394-9779 ext. 2.

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