The return of Tony! Toni! Toné!

Our December calendar of events


Tony! Toni! Toné!

Courtesy Yoshi's


5 • Holiday Stroll

Meander through Montclair Village, where you’ll have a chance to meet Santa, explore community booths, and listen to school and professional choirs perform. Catch the illuminated parade and stop in at local businesses and restaurants offering hospitality and discounts.

5:30–8:30 p.m., free. Montclair Village, Oakland, 510-339-1000,


6 • Jack London Square Lights Up for the Holidays

Bigger is better and since few of us can fit a 55-foot Mount Shasta fir in the house, come enjoy a tree-lighting ceremony on a grand scale. Plus, holiday music, tap-dancing Christmas trees, and reindeer that may invite you to join in their games.

5–7:30 p.m., free. Jack London Square, Broadway and Embarcadero, Oakland, 510-645-9292,


6–22 • An Olde Alameda Dickens Christmas Promenade

Stop by the theater to meet Santa, marvel at a two-story illuminated Christmas tree, and catch a rotating lineup of holiday entertainment including choirs and opera singers.

Evenings Fri.–Sun., free. The Alameda Theatre, 2317 Central Ave., Alameda, 510-769-2160,

7 • America’s Children’s Holiday Parade

There’s nothing quite like a parade. And with marching bands, floats, giant meandering balloons, and close to 40 beloved costumed cartoon characters, this is one parade you don’t want to miss. Past guests have included Oakland Athletics players, Mickey Mouse, Clifford the Big Red Dog, Snoopy, Bob the Builder, and Rudolph.

2 p.m., free. Broadway and 11th Street to 20th Street to Harrison Avenue, Oakland,

7 • Chai and Spice Workshop

Escape the winter chill with a trip to the garden’s Tropical House where Deepa Natarajan will guide you through some of the spices the garden grows as well as offering historical anecdotes and a chai tea demonstration and tasting guaranteed to warm you up.

1–2:30 p.m., $20. UC Botanical Garden, 200 Centennial Drive, Berkeley, 510-643-2755,

7 • Holiday Concert

The Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir—hosted by BD Freeman and joined by the Liturgical Dance Company, Oakland Interfaith Youth Choir, and Oakland Interfaith Community Choir—performs contemporary and traditional gospel and spirituals.

7:30 p.m., $12–$42. Paramount Theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oakland, 510-465-6400,

7 • Honeybelles

Expect a mix of swing, style, and modern flair when this local band takes the stage to perform a fusion of old-time classics with a contemporary spin.

7–9 p.m., $5–$15. High Street Station Cafe, 1303 High St., Alameda, 510-995-8049,

7 • Midway Shelter Run and Walk

Don your jogging shoes for a fundraising run that includes the Midway Shelter 5K, 1 Mile Walk, and a free half-mile children’s fun run open to all. Proceeds benefit Alameda’s Midway Shelter for Abused Women and Children.

8 a.m. registration, 9 a.m. race, $20 adults, $15 youth (18 and under). Harbor Bay Ferry Terminal, 215 Adelphian Way, Alameda, 510-523-2647,

7 • Piedmont Avenue Tree Lighting Ceremony and Holiday Stroll

The third Thursday Stroll receives a holiday makeover with a tree lighting ceremony (6 p.m.) that leads into caroling, a visit with Santa, holiday entertainment, and an opportunity to leisurely finish your holiday shopping with the help of local businesses.

6–9 p.m., free. Piedmont Ave. and 41st Street, Oakland, 510-653-8719,


7–22 • A Holiday Tradition

The 37-room mansion receives an Edwardian holiday makeover. Guests can tour the house or enjoy a carriage ride, shopping, tea service, brunch with Santa, and live entertainment. Plus, special performances by the Oakland Ballet Company (Dec. 15) and the Puppet Company (Dec. 22).

12–4 p.m., $9–$14 advance tickets, $14–$19 at the door. Dunsmuir Hellman Historic Estate, 2960 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, 510-238-3052,


8 • Holiday Arts Festival

Complete your holiday shopping list with handmade arts and crafts such as ceramics, prints, ornaments, and textiles as well as artisan foods from local artists and artisans. Or if your gift-giving is complete, enjoy a silent auction, food and wine, kids’ art activities, and “karol-o-kee” offering an opportunity to sing along with your favorite holiday songs.

11 a.m.–6 p.m., free. Richmond Art Center, 2540 Barrett Ave., Richmond, 510-620-6772,

8 • Snow Day

Stomp around in the snow, maybe throw a snowball or two, then visit the Snow Queen, run into a few wandering elves, sip hot cider, take the kids for a pony ride, enjoy holiday entertainment, and browse local vendors and crafters. Rain day is Dec. 14.

10 a.m.–3 p.m., free. Gourmet Ghetto, 1673 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, 510-548-5335,


8 • The Wailin’ Jennys

Missed the sold-out Freight and Salvage show in Berkeley? Head up to Napa for one more chance to see the trio perform their folk and roots music in a beautiful and intimate venue.

8 p.m., $28 advance tickets, $32 at the door. Uptown Theatre, 1350 Third St., Napa, 707-259-0123,


10–11 • It’s a Wonderful Life

Every time this perennial holiday classic plays, an angel gets his wings, so join the town of Bedford Falls in supporting George Bailey through a bad case of the holiday blues as the Classic Movie Series draws to a close for 2013.

$7.75, time not available at press time. The Alameda Theatre, 2317 Central Ave., Alameda, 510-769-2160,


12 • Bollywood Bingo — Jai Ho!

Get your tickets early for a popular event that mashes up performance art, colorful sarees, dance and music, and 10 bingo games to create a night of entertainment more akin to Rocky Horror than a bingo parlor.

7:30 p.m., $25. Rhythmix Cultural Works, 2513 Blanding Ave., Alameda, 510-865-5060,


13–14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24–25 • The Bracebridge Dinner

Few events share a history and love of pageantry like that of Yosemite’s famous Christmas feast. Dine on carrot soup, scallop and shrimp timbale, and duck confit strudel while servers attend to your every need and costumed performers and musicians tell the tale of the dinner’s namesake.

6 p.m., beginning at $389 with room/dinner packages available. Ahwahnee Hotel, 1 Ahwahnee Drive, Yosemite National Park, 801-559-5000,


14 • Holiday Home Tour

Ever wanted to peek inside your neighbors’ homes? Here’s your opportunity when they throw open their doors to reveal holiday decorations galore. This self-guided tour includes a Holiday Dessert Tea service (held at First Presbyterian Church) as well as a Gift Boutique and Gourmet Shop (held at the Alameda Elks Lodge No. 1015), the latter of which are open to the public. Proceeds benefit the Alameda Family Services League.

9:30 a.m.–4 p.m., $35 advance, $40 at the door. Various locations throughout Alameda, 510-629-6208,


14–15 • Holiday Gifty Art Sale and Open House

Local artists offer handmade gifts in a variety of media such as wood, metal, glass, and clothing just in time for the holidays. Get an inside glimpse into the creative process and have your questions answered with live demonstrations of techniques such as blacksmithing, metal casting, and glass working.

12–6 p.m. Sat., 12–5 p.m. Sun., free. The Crucible, 1206 Seventh St., Oakland, 510-444-0919,


15 • Montgomery Gentry and Charlie Daniels Band

Two legendary country bands co-headline one of the bay’s most underrated small venues. Expect hits such as “Lucky Man,” “Where I Come From,” and, of course, the iconic, “The Devil Went Down To Georgia.”

8 p.m., $45–$75. San Jose Civic, 135 West San Carlos St., San Jose, 408-792-4111,

15 • Something Merry

West Edge Opera continues its Holiday Concert Series (concludes with a Valentine’s Day performance on Feb. 14) with soprano Marie Plette’s performance of traditional holiday music and selections from opera and musical theatre.

4 p.m., $25 adult, $15 youth (17 and under). Piedmont Center for the Arts, 801 Magnolia Ave., Oakland, 510-841-1903,


Dec. 19-22 • The Return of Tony! Toni! Toné!

In anticipation of the group’s upcoming sixth album, the Oakland natives return home for a concert sure to feature some of their biggest hits, such as “Feels Good,” “It Never Rains (In Southern California),” and “Whatever You Want.”

8 and 10 p.m. Thu.–Fri., 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. Sat., 7 and 9 p.m. Sun., $34–$39. Yoshi’s Oakland, 510 Embarcadero, Oakland, 510-238-9200,


21–22, 24 • The Nutcracker

The Oakland Ballet Company and the Oakland East Bay Symphony present the timeless holiday classic full of magical presents, mice soldiers, sweets, and royalty. A Sweet Dreams party follows the Saturday and Sunday performances (separate ticket required, $15) in which kids can enjoy refreshments and meet some of the company’s dancers.

2 p.m. Sat.–Sun., 11 a.m. Tue., $20–$59.50. Paramount Theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oakland, 510-893-3132,


28 • George Lopez

The comedian and star of The Smurfs, ABC’s The George Lopez Show, and the upcoming FX sitcom, Saint George, brings his stand-up routine to Oakland for one hilarious night. Intended for mature audiences 18 and over.

8 p.m., $42.50–$66.50. Paramount Theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oakland, 510-465-6400,



Join 20,000 fellow partygoers in one of the East Bay’s largest New Year’s Eve celebrations, which turns the lights, color explosions, and music up to eleven. The rotating stage at this general admission extravaganza will host such acts as New World Punx, Nero, Madeon, and Bingo Players.

6 p.m., $100–$125. Oracle Arena, 7000 Coliseum Way, Oakland, 510-302-2250, Ticket prices increase as more tickets are sold.


31 • Primus and the Chocolate Factory

Tim Alexander returns to Primus for the first time since 2008. Following Primus’ performance, Frog Brigade Ensemble will join the band onstage for a journey through the music of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

9:30 p.m., $49.50–$65. The Fox Theater, 1807 Telegraph Ave., Oakland, 510-302-2250,



Through Dec. 15 • Owen Smith

Local artist Owen Smith closes out Alameda Museum’s rotating gallery exhibition. Smith is perhaps best known for his large-scale paintings and public art pieces, which depict America’s iconic past of rock-jawed heroes, noir villains, and the everyday man and woman.

1:30–4 p.m. Wed.–Fri. and Sun., 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Sat., free. 2324 Alameda Ave., Alameda, 510-521-1233,


Through Dec. 22 • Ciao Bella

Twenty local artists contribute more than 50 works across a variety of media—including watercolors, photography, and textiles—under the umbrella of everything Italian. Some works explore the breathtaking landscapes of Italy, while others focus on the food, the people, and the emotions and feelings of the country.

11 a.m.–7 p.m. Wed.–Sat., 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Sun., free. 1601 Paru St., Alameda, 510-523-6957,


Through Dec. 22 • Great Dickens Christmas Fair & Victorian Holiday Party

Every Saturday and Sunday, more than 120,000 square feet of exhibition halls transform into Victorian London during the holidays. Wander the shops, stop in at the pub for a drink, visit Santa, or check out seven stages of entertainment plus street performers in full costume.

10 a.m.–7 p.m., Sat.–Sun., $8–$25, free (4 and under). Cow Palace, 2600 Geneva Ave., San Francisco. 800-510-1558,


Through Dec. 31 • Cloud Forests: Beauty in the Mists

San Francisco’s foggy climate mirrors the cloud forests of southern Mexico and Central America, allowing guests a look into this diverse ecosystem full of brightly colored fuchsias, fuzzy begonias, and the 50-foot tall tree daisy that litters the ground with white petals some refer to as “San Francisco snow.” Docent-led tours occur every Saturday.

7:30 a.m.–5 p.m., $7 adults, $5 kids (12–17) and seniors (65 and over), $2 (5–11), free (4 and under). San Francisco Botanical Gardens, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. 415-661-1316,


Through Dec. 31 • ZooLights

When the sun goes down, the zoo lights up with hundreds of thousands of LED lights creating twinkling panoramas and dazzling scenes. Kids can visit with Santa, ride the Outback Express train, and enjoy special events such as performance by Lamorinda Theatre Academy Performing Ensemble (Dec. 14) and free Ghirardelli hot cocoa (Dec. 21). Not included in general admission; separate ticket required.

5:30–9 p.m., $8 adults, $6 kids. Oakland Zoo, 9777 Golf Links Road, Oakland. 510-632-9525,


Through Jan. 5 • ’Tis the Season for Science

The California Academy of Sciences’ annual holiday exhibit returns with mini-dome shows, indoor snow flurries, and the chance to meet reindeer. A rotating lineup of entertainment continues through the season with performances including New Castle High School (Dec. 13), Golden Gate Carolers (Dec. 24), and San Francisco Youth Ballet (Jan. 5).

9:30 a.m.–5 p.m. Mon.–Sat., 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Sun., $29.95 adults, $24.95 youth (12–17), students, and seniors (65 and over); $19.95 youth (4–11), free (3 and under). California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, San Francisco. 415-379-8000,


Through Jan. 12 • In Grand Style

More than 110 pieces of Korean art explore the Joseon Dynasty (1392–1910). The pieces focus on the celebrations, rituals, music, dance, and festivals of 27 kings that made up the more than 500-year reign of a royal family.

10 a.m.–5 p.m. Tue.–Sun., $12 adults, $8 youth (13–17) and seniors, free (12 and under). Asian Art Museum, 200 Larkin St., San Francisco. 415-581-3500,


Through Feb. 3, 2014 • Play Things: Toys in Peanuts

Rediscover the toys of the mid-20th century through the Peanuts. Close to 70 comic strips, many from the 1950s, highlight simple favorites such as wagons, marbles, blocks, and toy trains while a look inside creator Charles Schulz’s life shows how raising his own children influenced playtime for Charlie Brown and the gang.

11 a.m.–5 p.m. Mon. and Wed.–Fri., 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sat.–Sun., $10 adults, $5 kids (4–18), students, and seniors (62 and over). Charles M. Schulz Museum, 2301 Hardies Lane, Santa Rosa. 707-579-4452,




There’s always something going on at the Berkeley-based music and dance community center, from kids’ shows to world-class performers.

Times, prices vary. 1317 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, 510-525-5099,


Chabot Space & Science Center

Learn about the wonders of space through interactive exhibits, planetarium shows, moonlit hikes, children’s workshops, and theater shows.

10 a.m.–5 p.m. Wed.–Thu., Sun., 10 a.m.–10 p.m. Fri.–Sat. $16 adults, $12 ages 3–12. 10000 Skyline Blvd., Oakland, 510-336-7373,


Children’s Fairyland

This storybook park enchants with rides, animals, puppet shows, and performances.

Times vary, $8, free (under 1). 699 Bellevue Ave., Oakland, 510-452-2259,


Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse

This Berkeley coffeehouse offers a variety of entertainment ranging from funky soul music to gutsy blues and family-friendly shows.

Times and prices vary. 2020 Addison St., Berkeley, 510-644-2020,


Grizzly Peak Cyclists

Like bike riding? Need biking buddies? GPC could be the club for you. It’s a friendly bunch of riders of many levels with an abundance of scheduled no-drop rides.


Lake Merritt Joggers & Striders

This friendly running club and nonprofit organization stages regular Fourth Sunday Runs around Lake Merritt in Oakland, other fun runs, and more, including training programs for beginners, intermediate, and advanced runners as well as social events.


Families can channel their inner artist through exhibits, hands-on art activities, and art parties.

Prices and hours vary. 1625 Clay St., Oakland, 510-465-8770,


Oakland Art Murmur/Saturday Stroll

Get to know Oakland’s vibrant art and cultural venues through Art Murmur (first Friday of every month) and Saturday Stoll (every Saturday) at participating member galleries.

6–9 p.m. first Fri. of the month, 1–5 p.m. Sat. Various venues around 27th Street, Grand, Telegraph, and Broadway,


Oakland Museum of California

This dynamic local museum combines art, history and natural science to tell the stories of California and its people.

11 a.m.–5 p.m. Wed.–Thu. and Sat.–Sun., 11 a.m.–9 p.m. Fri., $6–$15, free (8 and under). 1000 Oak St., Oakland, 510-318-8400,


Pacific Pinball Museum

Play pinball to your heart’s content—all the lovingly restored pinball machines are set on free play, yay!

Times vary, Tue.–Sun., $15 adults, $7.50 kids (under 12). 1510 Webster St., Alameda, 510-769-1349,


High Scores Arcade

Play video games—Donkey Kong, Pac Man, anyone?—in a social setting where $5 buys an hour, and $10 gets all-day access to 30-somehting vintage arcade machines straight from the ’80s and ’90s.

1414 Park St., Alameda, 609-468-3083,


Peralta Hacienda Historic Park

The 6-acre park and historic Peralta House Museum reflects the untold history of the Peralta rancho and the stories of today’s Fruitvale.

2:30–5:30 p.m. Wed.–Sat., $5, free (under 10). 2465 34th Ave., Oakland, 510-532-9142,


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