Los Angeles events December 2020. Things to do in LA.

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Best events for 12 months

Los Angeles events December 2020

Christmas tree lighting

December 1, 2020
multiple locations
Watch a free tree-lighting ceremony with music. Additional events are listed on the November page.

Christmas at Knott’s Berry Farm

Dec. 1, 2020 - Jan. 3, 2021
(Nov. 27+)
Buena Park (24.6 miles SE)
Knott’s Berry Farm is adorned with Christmas decorations for Knott’s Merry Farm. It has an ice skating show starring Snoopy, a Charlie Brown Christmas show with classic songs, real falling snow, holiday treats to eat, a Christmas market, Santa Claus, and plenty of rides. Closed Dec. 25.

Arts & crafts show

December 4 - 6, 2020
Pomona (31.3 miles east)
Shop for handmade items from 300 vendors at the Harvest Festival, which offers entertainment, food booths, and a children’s activity center at the Fairplex.

Holiday boat parade (L.A.)

December 12, 2020
Marina del Rey (15 miles SW)
Kids play in the snow at Snow Wonder in Burton Chace Park (noon to 6 p.m.), fireworks go off on the jetty (5:55 to 6 p.m.), and the Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade circles the main channel (6 to 8 p.m.). Free.

Fireworks at the beach

December 13, 2020
Manhattan Beach (19.4 miles SW)
A snow park with a sledding hill opens at 4 p.m., a jazz band plays at 5 p.m., and the Manhattan Beach Holiday Fireworks go off at 7 p.m. Free.

Holiday celebration

December 24, 2020
Downtown (1.7 miles north)
Bands, choirs, and dance companies from throughout Los Angeles participate in the L.A. County Holiday Celebration at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion at The Music Center. People line up early for the free seats.

New Year’s Eve - restaurants

December 31, 2020
multiple locations
OpenTable lists restaurants that offer special menus and celebrations on New Year’s Eve.

New Year’s Eve at Skyspace

December 31, 2020
Downtown (1 mile NE)
Skyspace NYE Party offers incredible views, two dance floors with DJs playing hip-hop and house music, an open bar, skyslide rides and passed hors d’oeuvres until 10:30 p.m., a midnight countdown, and a champagne toast at OUE Skyspace for age 21+.

New Year’s Eve concert

December 31, 2020
Downtown (1.5 miles NE)
New Year’s Eve with Kristin Chenoweth stars the Tony and Emmy Award winner who “commands the stage with her operatic voice, unparalleled panache, and charm” and appears with two special guests at Walt Disney Concert Hall for age 6+.

New Year’s Eve downtown

December 31, 2020
Downtown (1.8 miles NE)
N.Y.E. L.A. Countdown to 2020 has two stages of live music, food trucks, and a countdown to midnight at Grand Park and the Music Center. Tight security. Free.

New Year’s Eve - Roaring ‘20s party

December 31, 2020
Downtown (2.5 miles NE)
Experience the excitement and glamour of the Roaring Twenties at Prohibition NYE, with theatrical burlesque, live jazz ensembles, famous DJs, an open bar featuring champagne and specialty cocktails, and a midnight ball drop in the concourse at Union Station.

New Year’s Eve in Hollywood

December 31, 2020
Hollywood (7.7 miles NW)
Dress upscale for Gatsby’s House, which features five DJs, a four-hour premium open bar, three areas to mingle, two rooms of music, and a midnight countdown at W Hollywood for age 21+.

New Year’s Eve in a nightclub

December 31, 2020
Hollywood (8.5 miles NW)
Your ticket for New Year’s Eve includes an open bar and “a whirlwind combination of high design, circus visuals, and great performances” with party favors and a complimentary midnight champagne toast at Playhouse Hollywood.

New Year’s Eve at the Egyptian

December 31, 2020
Hollywood (8.7 miles NW)
Cleopatra’s New Year’s Eve Ball has multiple dance floors, DJs playing dance music, a light show, and a heated outside courtyard at the Egyptian Theatre.

New Year’s Eve in Pasadena

December 31, 2020
Pasadena (11.5 miles NE)
New Year’s Eve Party features “renowned ‘80s and ‘90s cover band past action heroes, ‘80s multimedia videos, a DJ, an open deluxe bar, hors d’oeuvres, party favors, a champagne toast, dessert, and a hot beverage station” at Noor for age 21+.

New Year’s for kids

December 31, 2020
Pasadena (13 miles NE)
Celebrate the new year early with a balloon drop, live DJs, party hats, noisemakers, a countdown to the stroke of noon, and a balloon drop during Noon Year’s Eve at Kidspace Children’s Museum.

New Year’s Eve - variety show

December 31, 2020
Santa Monica (14.4 miles west)
New Year’s Eve Musical Review includes song, dance, comedy, dinner, champagne or cider, and party favors for all ages at Santa Monica Playhouse.

New Year’s Eve with knights

December 31, 2020
Buena Park (23.5 miles SE)
Ring in the New Year with the lords and ladies of Medieval Times. Ticket includes admission to the Museum of Torture, a two-hour live tournament, a four-course meal, party favors, DJ dancing, and champagne (or kids’ beverage).

New Year’s Eve at the aquarium

December 31, 2020
Long Beach (24.1 miles south)
Dance to DJ music, see aquarium exhibits, buy food, and visit the cash bar during New Year’s Eve Night Dive at the Aquarium of the Pacific for age 18+.

Family New Year’s at Knott’s

December 31, 2020
Buena Park (25 miles SE)
New Year’s Eve Celebration at Knott’s includes rides, live music, dancing, comedy, party hats, noisemakers, and fireworks at midnight at Knott’s Berry Farm.

New Year’s on a ship

December 31, 2020
Long Beach (26.2 miles south)
Dance to live and DJ music in multiple rooms, and watch a midnight fireworks show at New Year’s Eve Aboard the Queen Mary for age 21+.

New Year’s Eve for families

December 31, 2020
Fullerton (27.1 miles SE)
First Night Fullerton has live music, food vendors, activities, and midnight fireworks. It’s alcohol-free but there are bars in the neighborhood, at N. Harbor Boulevard & W. Wilshire Avenue. Free.

New Year’s Eve - Orange County

December 31, 2020
Huntington Beach (38.6 miles SE)
A ticket to the New Year’s Eve Party at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach includes a reserved seat in the ballroom, champagne at midnight, a balloon drop, and live entertainment by En Vogue, Michael Lington, Paul Taylor, and Erin Stevenson. Dinner is optional.

Flea market

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (0 miles)
ThriftCon LA features 100 vendors “of products ranging from valuable, vintage men’s and women’s clothing to classic, vintage collectibles and home goods” in the L.A. Convention Center.

Ski and snowboard sale

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (0.2 miles south)
Shop for snow merchandise at the Ski Dazzle ski and snowboard show at Los Angeles Convention Center.

Holiday movie party

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (1.1 miles NE)
You’re welcome to wear “holiday attire” to watch Gremlins at the Palace Theatre for all ages, with a free photo booth in honor of the adorable little monsters, DJ sets before and after the film, and a full bar. Doors open at 7:30 p.m., movie at 9 p.m.

Winter Holiday Festival

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (1.2 miles NE)
The L.A. Department of Recreation and Parks hosts the Winter Holiday Festival with 60 tons of snow for sledding, a merry-go-round, a Ferris wheel, DJ, food vendors, craft making, and photos with Santa at Pershing Square. Ice skating is not free.

Messiah

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (1.5 miles NE)
Los Angeles Master Chorale sings Handel’s magnificent Messiah accompanied by a chamber orchestra and four soloists in Walt Disney Concert Hall. The audience sings the chorus on Wednesday.

Ideas conference

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (1.9 miles NE)
Hear a dozen dynamic speakers talk about a variety of fascinating subjects at TEDxGrand Park at Ramón C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts. Your ticket includes lunch, snacks, and drinks.

People in the street

December 2020
(undated)
multiple locations
Walk, bike, or roller skate on car-free streets in Reseda, Winnetka, and Canoga Park during CicLAvia. Cars cross the route at some intersections. Minors on wheels must wear helmets. Free.

Free family fun

December 2020
(undated)
Baldwin Hills / Crenshaw (6.1 miles SW)
Play in the snow beginning at 3 p.m. and hear holiday songs performed by an “a capella” quintet plus Marsha Ambrosius beginning at 4 p.m. during Winter Wonderland on the top floor of the parking garage at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw. Free.

Jewish party

December 2020
(undated)
Hollywood (7.8 miles NW)
Originally a party where Jewish singles ages 21 to 49 met and mingled, now everyone is welcome to attend Matzoball Los Angeles at The Argyle for age 21+.

Holiday movies on the roof

December 2020
(undated)
Hollywood (8.4 miles NW)
Watch holiday movies under the stars on the rooftop of The Montalbán, with beer, wine, and food for sale.

Christmas spectacular

December 2020
(undated)
Hollywood (9.1 miles NW)
Cirque Dreams Holidaze features flying reindeer, jumping gingerbread men, rousing music, amazing costumes, and Santa at Dolby Theatre.

Jingle Ball concert

December 2020
(undated)
Inglewood (9.8 miles SW)
Jingle Ball brings big-name music artists every December to the Forum.

Cartoon film festival

December 2020
(undated)
Glendale (10.8 miles north)
The Greatest Classic Cartoons Ever star Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, Yosemite Sam, Goofy, Daffy Duck, Donald Duck, Mighty Mouse, Porky Pig, and Woody Woodpecker at Alex Theatre for all ages.

Short film festival

December 2020
(undated)
11.2 miles NW
See a dozen films shorter than 30 minutes at the Macoproject Film Festival at Warner Brothers Studios.

Taste of Pasadena

December 2020
(undated)
Pasadena (11.5 miles NE)
Taste food, wine, and beer at Sip & Savor Pasadena, with entertainment and a kids’ zone in the parking lot at Rose Bowl Stadium. In your mapping app, use “Lot i Pasadena” or 678 North Arroyo Boulevard.

Snow Days in Pasadena

December 2020
(undated)
Pasadena (11.8 miles NE)
Play in the snow, dance at a party every half hour, watch two live shows, hear stories, and learn about nature during Snow Days at Kidspace Children’s Museum.

Open house in art galleries

December 2020
(undated)
Santa Monica (12.6 miles east)
Browse art, hear live music, attend artist talks, and shop from food trucks during the Winter Open House in 20 galleries at Bergamot Station. Free.

Marching bands

December 2020
(undated)
Pasadena (12.7 miles NE)
See outstanding bands that were chosen to participate in the upcoming Rose Parade at Bandfest in Robinson Stadium at Pasadena City College.

Nutcracker

December 2020
(undated)
Torrance (13.7 miles south)
South Bay Ballet’s performance of The Nutcracker includes “an inspired plot twist that will bring tears to your eyes” at Marsee Auditorium.

Lights in the garden

December 2020
(undated)
La Cañada Flintridge (14.3 miles north)
Buy tickets in advance for Enchanted: Forest of Light, a one-mile walk through lighting displays, including some that are interactive, at Descanso Gardens. Food is for sale. Closed Dec. 24 & 25.

Pub crawl

December 2020
(undated)
Santa Monica (15 miles west)
Join 6,000 people in festive attire on the “Santa” Monica Pub Crawl, which features food and drink specials at 30 bars on four different routes.

Lantern art

December 2020
(undated)
Arcadia (17.5 miles NE)
Take a one-mile walk through a wonderland of “exotic animals, shimmering flowers, whimsical pandas, soaring dragons...” at the Moonlight Forest with food for sale at Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden. No pets or bikes.

Hanukkah festival

December 2020
(undated)
Bel Air (17.8 miles NW)
Hanukkah Festival offers “light for the people” with lively music, a sing along, storytelling, treats, and art making at the Skirball Cultural Center.

Holiday train ride

December 2020
(undated)
multiple locations
Take a one-hour roundtrip train ride to the North Pole as you drink cocoa and eat a cookie with Santa and entertainers on the Polar Express, which departs from two locations. Closed Dec. 25.

Holiday parade

December 2020
(undated)
San Pedro (22.8 miles south)
Featuring marching bands, drill teams, floats, community groups, and Santa Claus, Spirit of San Pedro Holiday Parade goes north on Pacific Avenue (from 13th to 6th Street) and then east on 6th Street (from Pacific Ave. to Palos Verdes St.). Free.

Holiday boat parade

December 2020
(undated)
San Pedro (23 miles south)
See elaborately decorated boats cruising the Main Channel of Los Angeles Harbor during the L.A. Harbor Holiday Afloat Parade [scroll down their page]. Pre-parade activities begin at 4 p.m. at Banning’s Landing Community Center. Free.

Small-town snow festival

December 2020
(undated)
Pomona (29.3 miles east)
Children can play in the snow for free or sled unlimited times down a small hill for $5 cash (wearing closed-toe shoes) at Winter Snow Fest in Diamond Bar. Video (5 min.).

Nutcracker ballet

December 2020
(undated)
Costa Mesa (41.8 miles SE)
American Ballet Theatre performs The Nutcracker with 100 performers on stage, dazzling sets, amazing costumes, and Tchaikovsky’s timeless score at Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

Nutcracker for kids

December 2020
(undated)
Costa Mesa (41.8 miles SE)
Pacific Symphony performs a 45-minute version of The Nutcracker designed for children ages 5 to 11, and then it finishes with a grand finale holiday sing-along and a visit from Santa at Segerstrom Concert Hall.

Winter festival

December 2020
(undated)
Costa Mesa (42.2 miles SE)
A Winter Fest ticket includes ice tubing, craft making, real snow, walk-through lights, a petting zoo, live shows, and a nightly tree lighting with fireworks at the OC Fair & Event Center. Pay extra for ice skating, carnival rides, arcade games, and food trucks.

Holiday boat parade (O.C.)

December 2020
(undated)
Newport Beach (48 miles SE)
Watch beautifully decorated yachts, boats, kayaks, and canoes sail in Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade at Newport Harbor. Fireworks on some nights. Free to watch from shore.

Jazz in San Diego

December 2020
(undated)
San Diego (119 miles south)
Billed as “the crown jewel of jazz festivals,” San Diego Jazz Fest features 25 bands playing a variety of traditional jazz, dixieland, ragtime, swing, and rockabilly styles at Town & Country Resort and Convention Center. Dancing is welcome.

Holidays in San Diego

December 2020
(undated)
San Diego (120 miles south)
Thinking of a getaway? Balboa Park December Nights has entertainment, holiday lights, food, and free museums that make it a huge annual event. Free.

Tamale festival

December 2020
(undated)
Indio (131 miles east)
How far would you drive for delicious tamales? The Indio International Tamale Festival tempts you with 200 vendors, five stages of entertainment, beer and wine gardens, a tamale eating contest, a carnival, a Saturday car show, and a Saturday parade in downtown Indio. Free.

Art fair

December 2020
(undated)
Silver Lake (5 miles north)
Shop from 100 craftspeople for jewelry, clothing, ceramics, weavings, flowers, and fresh juice at friendly Echo Park Craft Fair at Mack Sennett Studios. Held in May and December.

Nutcracker ballet

December 2020
(undated)
multiple locations
The Nutcracker by The Los Angeles Ballet is a holiday classic with outstanding choreography and dance.
  • Alex Theatre, Glendale
  • Cerritos Center
  • Dolby Theatre, Hollywood
  • Redondo Beach PAC
  • Royce Hall, UCLA

Nutcracker ballet - Inland Empire

December 2020
(undated)
multiple locations
The Nutcracker by Inland Pacific Ballet tells the traditional story of Clara’s journey to a land of snow and a kingdom of sweets with “dazzling sets, beautiful costumes, and more than 80 dancers on stage” in Claremont, Rancho Cucamonga, and Riverside.

Nativity procession

December 2020
(undated)
Downtown (2.8 miles NE)
Watch a reenactment of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem at Las Posadas, a Spanish tradition with a colorful candlelit procession, songs, dancing, and the breaking of piñatas at Olvera Street. Free.

Holiday movies outdoors

December 2020
(undated)
Cypress Park (5.2 miles NE)
Arrive early at Yuletide Cinemaland for Christmas carolers, food, beverages, and films at Heritage Square. Click a film to see parking information. Bring a blanket or low-back chair.

Lights at the zoo

December 2020
(undated)
Griffith Park (10 miles north)
See dazzling colored lights, meet real reindeer, hear live music on the weekend, and visit Santa some nights at L.A. Zoo Lights at the Los Angeles Zoo. Closed Dec. 24 & 25.

Dr. Seuss at Universal Studios

December 2020
(undated)
Hollywood (10.2 miles NW)
Fans of Dr. Seuss books will enjoy Grinchmas. The characters of Who-ville sing carols around the Christmas tree and put on a theater show, while Cindy Lou Who tells stories. Meet Max the Dog and get your photo taken with the Grinch at Universal Studios.

Holidays at the mansion

December 2020
(undated)
Beverly Hills (11.5 miles NW)
“Enjoy a family day of fun with cookie decorating, crafts, holiday vendors, a visit with Santa, and holiday music” at Joy to the Holidays at Greystone Mansion. Garden concert is 1 p.m. Sunday. Offsite parking with shuttle. Register free online.

Christmas musical

December 2020
(undated)
La Mirada (22 miles SE)
The Magic of Christmas features a cast of 250 in “musical numbers that range from hip-hopping penguins, dancing Santas, and The Nutcracker Suite, to Toyland, The Polar Express, and Christmas choral music” at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts.

Nutcracker ballet - Long Beach

December 2020
(undated)
Long Beach (24 miles south)
Long Beach Ballet gets rave reviews for its annual production of The Nutcracker, which includes a flying sleigh, a live horse, pyrotechnics, and a full symphony orchestra at the Terrace Theater.

Christmas on the Queen Mary

December 2020
(undated)
Long Beach (26.2 miles south)
Queen Mary Christmas has “thousands of twinkling lights, carolers and musical performances, an outdoor skating rink, and Santa” onboard the Queen Mary.

Christmas at Magic Mountain

December 2020
(undated)
Santa Clarita (35.9 miles north)
See holiday lights and decorations, falling snow, and Christmas characters during Holiday in the Park [website has sound], with lots of entertainment, holiday foods, and select rides at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Open every day.

Christmas cirque + magic show

December 2020
(undated)
Thousand Oaks (41 miles NW)
A Magical Cirque Christmas promises “dazzling illusions and breathtaking cirque artists, performing to your favorite holiday music” for all ages at Fred Kavli Theatre.

Nutcracker ballet

December 2020
(undated)
Irvine (45.3 miles SE)
The Nutcracker by Festival Ballet Theatre features colorful scenery, magnificent costumes, and sensational dancing at the Irvine Barclay Theatre.

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