We’ve given thanks and survived Black Friday. The Christmas season can officially begin. To say there’s a lot to do in the area between now and the end of the year would be an understatement. Teas and trees, music and markets, symphonies and skating, Nativity scenes and Nutcrackers galore. Take your pick, and soak in the holiday spirit.
FRIDAY & SATURDAY
- A NEW ROADS CHRISTMAS: 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Town Square, New Roads. There will be food, crafts, vendors, music, ice skating and children’s activities. A white light night walking tour will be held 6 p.m.-8 p.m. Saturday. (225) 638-5360 or pctourism.com
- ZOO LIGHTS: 5:30 p.m., BREC’s Baton Rouge Zoo, 3601 Thomas Road, Baker. A mile-long trail through the zoo, with more than 50 illuminated light sculptures. Various special activities during display. Admissions gate closes at 8 p.m., zoo grounds at 9 p.m. $5, adults/teens; $4, seniors; and $3, ages 2-12 and Friends of the Zoo members. brzoo.org
- CELEBRATION IN THE OAKS: 6 p.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 6 p.m.-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, City Park, New Orleans. $8; children under 3 and Friends of City Park, free. http://neworleanscitypark.com/celebration-in-the-oaks
- SAILING WITH SANTA: 2 p.m., Steamboat Natchez, Toulouse Street at the Mississippi River, New Orleans. Cruise includes a holiday toy and essential needs drive for women and children of the New Orleans’ area battered women’s shelters. Toy drop-off begins at 1:30 p.m. Free with drive donation. (504) 586-8777 or steamboatnatchez.com/reservations
- LIFE-SIZE NATIVITY SCENE BLESSING: 3 p.m., St. Charles College grounds, corner of La. 93 and Church Street, Grand Coteau. The display will be on view until mid-January. (337) 948-8004
SATURDAY & SUNDAY
- CHRISTMAS TREE AND HOLIDAY GIFT SALE: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Hubbell Library, 925 Pelican Ave., Algiers Point.
- CHRISTMAS SHOPPE: 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Willow Wood Park Recreation Center, 113 Willow Wood Drive, New Iberia. Local crafters displaying and selling handcrafted jewelry, beauty products, handmade candles, soap, food products and more. (337) 229-1982 or IberiaTravel.com
- LAND OF THE SWEETS TEA: 2 p.m.-4 p.m., Boudreaux’s, 2647 Government St., Baton Rouge. An interactive experience for elementary-age children and their families to meet and greet characters from the Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre’s production of “The Nutcracker — A Tale from the Bayou.” There will be food, arts and crafts and dance lessons. Advance tickets required. $45, or $400 for table of 10. (225) 766-8379 or batonrougeballet.org
- SOUNDS OF THE SEASON: 3 p.m., St. Peters Church, 108 E. St. Peter St., New Iberia. Christmas concert by the Acadiana Symphony Orchestra. Free.
- THE TRADITIONAL IDLEWILD PLANTATION CHRISTMAS LIGHTING DRIVING TOUR: 5:30 p.m.-9 p.m., Kemper Williams Park, Patterson. $2 per car. (985) 395-2298
- CHRISTMAS NEW ORLEANS STYLE: 6 p.m., Jackson Square, New Orleans. Full unveiling of the decorations at Jackson Square celebrating the event’s 30th anniversary which took place Nov. 17. fqfi.org
- CHRISTMAS CONCERT SERIES: 6 p.m. various nights, St. Louis Cathedral, Jackson Square, New Orleans. Free. For full schedule, go to fqfi.org.
- SNEAUX@LOYNO: 6 p.m.-8 p.m., Loyola University, New Orleans. There will be caroling, cookie decorating, refreshments and photos with Santa. loyno.edu
- 9TH ANNUAL LIGHTING OF THE BALCONIES: 6 p.m., Royal Sonesta New Orleans, 300 Bourbon St., New Orleans. The ceremony takes place street-side complete with a full lineup of musical performances. Free.
WEDNESDAY & THURSDAY
- A BENEFIT FOR CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL: Marquette Theatre, Loyola University campus, 6363 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans. Preview performances of Southern Rep’s production of “A Christmas Carol.” Adults, $25; children, $12.50. $5 from each adult ticket will benefit the hospital. (504) 522-6545
- HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS CONCERT: 7:30 p.m., Baton Rouge River Center Theatre, 275 S. River Road, Baton Rouge. A performance by the Baton Rouge Symphony and Chorus featuring Jonathan Beyer. brso.org
- VICTORIAN CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, Otis House Museum, Fairview-Riverside State Park, La. 22, near Madisonville. Tour the museum where five decades of Christmas will be depicted through the decorations. (888) 677-3247
THURSDAY & DEC. 5
- “A MIRACLE ON 34TH ST.”: 7 p.m., The Teche Theatre for the Performing Arts, 501 Main St., Franklin. Annual Christmas show. Adults, $10; children, $5. (337) 366-1845 or ttpaonline.com
- DOWNTOWN FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS: 4 p.m.-9 p.m., North Boulevard Town Square, downtown Baton Rouge. Lighting of the tree and lights along North Boulevard. Ice skating, sledding, music, open house, art openings, shopping and more. Free.
- REFLECTIONS OF THE SEASON PREMIER LIGHTING CHRISTMAS PARTY: 5:30 p.m.-9 p.m., West Baton Rouge Tourist Information & Conference Center Grounds, 2750 N. Westport Drive, Port Allen.
- 24 ANNUAL CHRISTMAS CONCERT: 7 p.m., Live Oak United Methodist Church, 34890 La. 16, Watson. Livingston Parish Children Choirs will present. lpccsing.org
- LOUISIANA PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA - YULETIDE CELEBRATION: 7:30 p.m., SLU’s Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts, East Thomas Street, Hammond. $20 and up. columbiatheatre.org
- 78TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY CONCERT: 7:30 p.m., Lawless Memorial Chapel, Dillard University Campus, New Orleans. Backed by a 25-piece orchestra, there will be performances by the Dillard University Choir featuring guests New Orleans Chinese Choir, The Zion Harmonizers and more. (504) 816-4800 or dillard.edu
- “A CHRISTMAS CAROL, THE MUSICAL”: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Main Stage, Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts, 325 Minor St., Kenner. Adults, $37; seniors, $35; and students and active military, $32. (504) 461-9475 or RivertownTheatres.com
- THE BATON ROUGE ARTS MARKET: 8 a.m.-noon, 5th at Main St., Baton Rouge. Holiday items. Rain location: Galvez Parking Garage, 500 Main St. Also Dec. 13 and 20. artsbr.org
- HOLIDAY ART MARKET: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Covington Trailhead, 419 N. New Hampshire St., Covington. Presented by the St. Tammany Art Association. cityofcovingtonla.com
- HOLIDAY DESSERT SWAP: 10 a.m., Ascension Parish Library, Dutchtown. Sample and share holiday treats. Also, performance by the Dutchtown High School Choir. (225) 673-8699
LE MARCHE’ DES FETES: 10 A.M.-4 P.M., LOUISIANA LANDMARKS SOCIETY & PITOT HOUSE, 1440 MOSS ST., NEW ORLEANS. A GARDEN LECTURE AND CELEBRATION OF GRAPEFRUIT AND CREOLE HOLIDAY TRADITIONS. THERE WILL BE LIVE MUSIC, BOOK SIGNINGS AND VENDORS. LOUISIANALANDMARKS.ORG
BROADMOOR CHRISTMAS PARADE: 2 P.M., STARTING FROM THE BROADMOOR HIGH SCHOOL PARKING LOT, GOODWOOD BOULEVARD. THE PARADE WILL HEAD EAST AND THEN TURN NORTH ON WOODHAVEN STREET, WEST AT SOUTH RIVER OAKS, SOUTH AT CORA DRIVE, AND RETURN ON GOODWOOD TO THE HIGH SCHOOL. SPONSORED BY THE BROADMOOR RESIDENTS’ ASSOCIATION. SPECTATORS ARE ASKED TO BRING A NON-PERISHABLE FOOD ITEM FOR THE SOUTHEAST MINISTRIES FOOD PANTRY. (225) 926-9829
DECK THE RAILS: 4 P.M.-7:30 P.M., COVINGTON TRAILHEAD, 419 N. NEW HAMPSHIRE, COVINGTON. CAROLING, ARRIVAL OF SANTA, OUTDOOR SHOWING OF THE MOVIE “ELF.” (985) 892-1873
- ANNUAL ALGIERS BONFIRE AND CONCERT ON THE RIVER: 5 p.m., Mississippi River at Algiers Point, Algiers. There will be music and children’s activities. algiersbonfire.com
- CITY OF FRANKLIN 2014 CHRISTMAS PARADE: 6 p.m-9 p.m., corner of Jackson and Man streets, Franklin. Parade ends at the Courthouse Square with the lighting of the parish tree. (337) 828-3631
- HOLIDAY BAZAAR: 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday, 8772 Quarter Lake Road, Building 13, Baton Rouge. Homemade items and services for sale, also a raffle and silent auction. Ten percent of the proceeds to benefit families in the Baton Rouge area. (225) 287-8887
- A CIVIL WAR CHRISTMAS - THE BATTLE OF ALEXANDER’S CREEK: 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Audubon State Historic Site, 11788 La. 965, St Francisville. Patrons will walk through the soldier camps and see living history demonstrations of soldier life. There will also be black powder weapon demonstrations of both rifle and cannons. Each day will feature a small re-enactment of the October 1864 Battle at Alexander’s Creek which happened on the park some 150 years ago. (225) 635-3739 or Audubonstatehistoricsite@wordpress.com
REFLECTIONS OF THE SEASON ICE FISHING: 5:30 P.M.-9 P.M., WEST BATON ROUGE TOURIST INFORMATION & CONFERENCE CENTER GROUNDS, 2750 N. WESTPORT DRIVE, PORT ALLEN.
- “THE NUTCRACKER”: 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Heymann Performing Arts Center, Lafayette. A Lafayette Ballet Theatre production. $22-$49. (337) 262-0444 or lafayetteballettheatre.org
- “A CHRISTMAS CAROL”: 8 p.m Thursday-Saturday, 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Marquette Theatre, Loyola University campus, 6363 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans. A Southern Rep Theatre presentation of the Charles Dickens classic. Adults, $25; children younger than 12, $12.50. (504) 522-6545
- REFLECTIONS OF THE SEASON: Christmas light display on the grounds of the West Baton Rouge Tourist Information and Conference Center. Enjoy wagon rides, ice fishing, snow nights, decorated holiday displays, crafts and Santa and his elves. Port Allen. westbatonrouge.net
DEC. 6-JAN. 6
- OAKLAWN MANOR CHRISTMAS TOURS: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Sunday, Franklin. $15, general public; $10, students. (337) 828-0434
- A RURAL LIFE CHRISTMAS: 12:30 p.m.-6 p.m., LSU Rural Life Museum, Essen Lane. Decorations with natural trimmings representative of special times of long ago will be displayed throughout the museum’s grounds. Seasonal activities such as musical groups, demonstrating artisans, open hearth cooking, storytellers, and costumed re-enactors. $9 per person; 10 years and under, free. The event will conclude with a bonfire and a visit from Papa Noel. rurallife.lsu.edu
- WINTER WONDERLAND FOOD FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-6 p.m., St. Joseph Catholic Church, 15710 La. 16, French Settlement. (225) 698-3110
- “TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS”: 2 p.m., Manship Theatre, 100 Lafayette St., Baton Rouge. A musical inspired by the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas”. manshiptheatre.org
- HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE: 2 p.m.-4 p.m., West Baton Rouge Museum, 845 N. Jefferson Ave., Port Allen. Cooking demonstrations, hands-on craft activities and storybook readings. Free. (225) 336-2422 or wbrmuseum.org
10TH ANNUAL PELICAN STATE CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES: JULIEN POYDRAS MUSEUM AND ARTS CENTER, 500 W. MAIN ST., NEW ROADS. FEATURING MUSIC BY NICHOLLS CAMERATA OF NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY. (225) 638-6575
- HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS CONCERT: 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., Baton Rouge River Center Theatre. With the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra and Chorus and featuring baritone Jonathan Beyer. Instrument Petting Zoo will be held in the lobby at 2 p.m. brso.org
- CHRISTMAS AT LOYOLA CONCERT: 3 p.m.-5 p.m., Holy Name of Jesus Church, Loyola University campus, New Orleans. Featuring the College of Music and Fine Arts’ major music ensembles. Also the Loyola Chamber Orchestra, the Loyola Chorale and Chamber Singers and Loyola Brass Ensemble. There will be an audience carol sing-a-long. Free.
- “THE NUTCRACKER SUITE”: 3 p.m. and 6 p.m., Dixon Hall, Tulane University campus, New Orleans. A dance production featuring NORDC/NOBA Center for Dance’s programs for youth and senior citizens, along with students of NOBA’s free after-school partnership programs with Wilson Charter School. $5. (504) 522-0996 or nobadance.com
- “THE GRINCH”: 6 p.m., Municipal Auditorium, Morgan City. Presented by the Tri-City Youth Theatre. (985) 380-4639
- “CREOLE CHRISTMAS”: 7:30 p.m., Manship Theatre, 100 Lafayette St., Baton Rouge. A performance by the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. manshiptheatre.org
- CAROLS IN THE COURTYARD: WHITE CHRISTMAS: 6:30 p.m., Ascension Parish Library, Gonzales. Led by Linda and Larry Schexnaydre of Center Stage Performing Arts Academy. (225) 647-3955
- “A USO CHRISTMAS SHOW”: 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, and 3 p.m. Sunday, IPAL, 126 Iberia St., New Iberia. An original musical presentation by the Iberia Performing Arts League. Production has no USO affiliation and is not a USO benefit. $10. (225) 364-6114 or ipaltheatre.com
- LAMAR FAMILY HOLIDAY BRASS CONCERT: 7:30 p.m., St. Joseph Cathedral, 412 North St., Baton Rouge. brso.org
DEC. 12 & 13
- “THE NUTCRACKER”: 7 p.m., SLU’s Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts, East Thomas Street, Hammond. $20 and up. columbiatheatre.org
- COTTONPORT CHRISTMAS ON THE BAYOU: Cottonport. Christmas parade winds along picturesque Bayou Rouge through downtown Cottonport. Christmas goodies abound and fireworks light up the night sky as thousands of visitors party along the banks of the bayou.
- “THE ONLY CHRISTMAS PAGEANT IN TOWN”: 7 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jefferson Baptist Church, 9135 Jefferson Highway, Baton Rouge. A production in which a fictional church’s Christmas pageant is drastically changed due to a blizzard. (225) 926-0902
- “A CHRISTMAS CAROL”: 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday and Saturday, Dec. 13, Main Stage, Theatre Baton Rouge, 7155 Florida Blvd., Baton Rouge. The Charles Dickens classic featuring special effects. $25. Pay-what-you-can night Dec. 11. (225) 924-6496 or theatrebr.org
- CHRISTMAS AT ROSEDOWN: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Rosedown Plantation State Historic Site, 12501 La. 10, St. Francisville. Celebration and living history program. Staff will be costumed in 19th century clothing while telling stories of the Turnbull and Bowman families. There will also be cooking demonstrations, a marshmallow roast and hayrides. (225) 342-8111
MERRY MUSIC RED KETTLE: 10 A.M.-9 P.M., IN FRONT OF CINEMARK PERKINS ROWE MOVIE THEATER, BLUEBONNET BOULEVARD AT PERKINS ROAD. HOLIDAY FUND DRIVE TO BENEFIT AREA RELIEF PROGRAMS. FREE LIVE MUSIC BY LOCAL ARTISTS.
COOKIES & COFFEE TREASURES: 10 A.M., ASCENSION PARISH LIBRARY, DONALDSONVILLE. BRING HOMEMADE GOODIES, SAMPLE THOSE OF OTHERS, AND EXCHANGE RECIPES. (225) 473-8052
SANTA AND MRS. CLAUS: 2 P.M.-4 P.M., THE SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE VISITOR CENTER, 61389 LA. 4343, LACOMBE. THERE WILL BE PHOTOS, REFRESHMENTS AND STORIES. FREE. (985) 882-2000
3RD ANNUAL OAKS KIWANIS SANTA FUN RUN: 5 P.M., 200 GOVERNMENT ST., DOWNTOWN BATON ROUGE. HUNDREDS OF SANTA RUN THROUGH DOWNTOWN IN THIS 1.25-MILE FUN RUN.
2014 CORTANA KIWANIS CHRISTMAS PARADE: 5:30 P.M., DOWNTOWN BATON ROUGE. MARKING ITS 64TH YEAR, THE FAMILY-FRIENDLY PARADE FEATURES AROUND 80 ENTRIES, FROM MARCHING BANDS TO LOCAL BUSINESSES.
CANDLELIGHT CHRISTMAS TOURS: 5 P.M.-8 P.M., OTIS HOUSE MUSEUM, FAIRVIEW-RIVERSIDE STATE PARK, LA. 22, NEAR MADISONVILLE. WITH COSTUMED INTERPRETERS, AND REFRESHMENTS. (888) 677-3247
BLUE MAGIC ON MAIN CHRISTMAS PARADE: 6 P.M., MAIN STREET, NEW IBERIA.
- CITY OF PATTERSON’S 1ST CHRISTMAS BOAT LIGHTING PARADE: 6 p.m., Cajun Jack Swamp Tours, Patterson. An awards ceremony will follow at City Hall. There will be hot chocolate, gumbo and photos with Santa. (985) 395-5205 or cityofpattersonla.gov
DEC. 13 & 20
- REFLECTIONS OF THE SEASON SNOW PATCH: 5:30 p.m.-9 p.m., West Baton Rouge Tourist Information & Conference Center Grounds, 2750 N. Westport Drive, Port Allen.
DEC. 13-14, 19-20, 21-22
- ROYAL TEDDY BEAR TEA: 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., Royal Sonesta New Orleans, 300 Bourbon St., New Orleans. A high tea presentation with Christmas characters. General admission: $69, adults; $49, children. VIP experience: $85, adults; $65, children, includes a photo and commemorative tea cup for the children and champagne for the adults. Reservations required. (504) 553-2328
- BATON ROUGE CONCERT BAND: 3 p.m., St. Joseph Cathedral, 412 North St., Baton Rouge. (225) 223-8773
- LAMAR FAMILY HOLIDAY BRASS CONCERT: 4:30 p.m., Houmas House, 40136 La. 942, Darrow. brso.org
- 3RD ANNUAL POINTE COUPEE PARISH HISTORICAL SOCIETY CHRISTMAS BONFIRE: Julien Poydras Museum and Arts Center, 500 W. Main St., New Roads. Free. (225) 638-6575
DEC. 19-JAN. 4
- ICE SKATING ON THE RIVER: Baton Rouge River Center. 75-minute sessions most days. $12 per person, with special group or birthday packages. (225) 389-3030 or ticketmaster.com
- BATON ROUGE CONCERT BAND: 6 p.m. and 7:15 p.m., Magnolia Park, Perkins Rowe, 10202 Perkins Rowe, Baton Rouge. (225) 223-8773
- “THE NUTCRACKER - A TALE FROM THE BAYOU”: 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., Baton Rouge River Center Theatre, 275 S. River Road, Baton Rouge. An original production of the Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre featuring guest artists. $20-$55. batonrougeballet.org
- LIGHTING OF THE LUMINARIES: 6 p.m., Kenilworth Subdivision.
Judy Bergeron contributed to this compilation.