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News & Reviews
HOLIDAY MAGIC SANTA’S ENCHANTED FOREST
The world’s largest Christmas theme park, a must-see for kids of all ages, celebrates its 35th year with its millions upon millions of dazzling lights, more than 100 rides (love that Crazy Mouse), festive music, great food, and South Florida’s tallest Christmas tree.
Details: 5 p.m.-midnight daily, running through Jan. 7, at Santa’s Enchanted Forest (Tropical Park), 7900 SW 40th St., Miami; www.santasenchantedforest.com; $33.78-$44.79.
GULFSTREAM PARK SYMPHONY OF LIGHTS
Get into the holiday spirit with this nightly event featuring thousands of lights, a 50-foot tree, selfies with Santa and Mrs. Claus, face-painting, jugglers and stilt jumpers, tattoo artists, train rides and much more.
Details: 6-11 p.m. daily, running through Dec. 31, at Gulfstream Park, 901 S. Federal Hwy., Hallandale Beach; www.gulfstreampark.com; free.
FREE FAMILY FILMS MOVIES ON THE MILE
Monthly series features free family flicks every first Thursday – this time it’s the 1990 comedy classic “Home Alone,” starring Macauley Culkin as a boy accidentally left at home over Christmas vacation who must protect the house from bumbling, would-be burglars Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern.
Details: Grounds open at 6 p.m.; movie starts at 7 p.m. Thursday; at The Plaza at 150 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables; www.coralgables.com/index; free.
GOLD COAST RAILROAD MUSEUM THE POLAR EXPRESS
A magical holiday tradition is resurrected as this 50-minute train ride based on the classic children’s story ventures through the quiet wilderness for a special visit to the North Pole and a meeting with Santa Claus. Guests on board, who are encouraged to wear their PJs, will enjoy warm cocoa and other treats while listening to and reading along with the enchanting story. Plus, each child will receive a silver sleigh bell for the first gift of Christmas.
Details: 6:30 and 8 p.m. Friday; and 6 and 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; running through Dec. 24; at the Gold Coast Railroad Museum, 12450 SW 152nd St., Miami; www.gcrm.org; $42.80-$74.90; children under 2 free (must sit on adult’s lap).
HOLIDAY CLASSIC THE NUTCRACKER
Travel to the Land of Sweets once again, as the Arts Ballet Theatre of Florida presents its sparkling production filled with snowflakes, sugar plums, magical dolls, naughty little boys and a Christmas toy that comes to life, plus the enchanting score by Tchaikovsky.
Details: 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 3 p.m. Sunday, at the Aventura Arts & Cultural Center, 3385 NE 188th St., Aventura; 305-466-8002 or www.aventuracenter.org; $40.
NO, NOT MICKEY MOUSE KING
Now in its fifth year, this family-friendly musical conceived by “Sesame Street” and Disney veteran Noel MacNeal tells the story of “The Nutcracker” from the point of view of the mice. It features original music by longtime South Florida alt-rock composer Jim Camacho.
Details: 7 p.m. Friday, 1 and 7 p.m. Saturday, and 1 p.m. Sunday, at the Mandelstam Theater, 8530 SW 57th Ave., South Miami; 800-838-3006 or www.jimcamacho.com; $25.
ZOO MIAMI ZOO LIGHTS
See the Zoo at night like you’ve never seen it before, as half a million animal-shaped lights create a spectacular, festive atmosphere, enhanced by free 3D glasses, hot chocolate and cookies, photos with Santa, free Snowman’s River boat rides, yuletide carolers and carousel rides.
Details: 7 p.m. every Friday and Saturday in December, plus the week of Dec. 26-30, at Zoo Miami, 12400 SW 152nd St., Miami; www.zoomiami.org; $9.95 per person ($7.95 members).
GIRL CHOIR OF SOUTH FLORIDA FROM STARRY SKIES
Singers from all six levels of the program, from girls to women, will sing well-loved carols, collaborating with local folk musicians in this show whose title comes from the beloved Italian carol, “Tu scendi dalle stele.” You’ll also hear modern works from jazz and musical theater genres.
Details: 8 p.m. Friday at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Amaturo Theater, 201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale; 954-462-0222 or www.browardcenter.org; $15-$38.
CORAL GABLES MUSEUM FAMILY DAY ON ARAGON
Catch the Christmas spirit with a holiday-themed market by Hatch Miami with more than 30 vendors, a snow machine, a gingerbread house art activity, and performances by poet Richard Blanco and the Miami Royal Ballet.
Details: Noon-5 p.m. Saturday at Coral Gables Museum, 285 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables; 305-603-8067 or www.coralgablesmuseum.org; free.
FREE SECOND SATURDAYS SENSORY SCULPTURE
Experience the enveloping sculpture of artist Jesús Rafael Soto, look for sculptures during an outdoor scavenger hunt, or construct your own sculpture using recycled objects and unique art supplies.
Details: 1-4 p.m. Saturday at Perez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 305-375-3000 or www.pamm.org; free with museum admission ($16 adults, $12 kids 7-18, free 6 and under).
MUSICAL THEATRE FOR YOUNG AUDIENCES NARNIA: THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE
Based on the beloved story by C.S. Lewis, this adventurous musical adaptation features popular songs and unforgettable characters, including the White Witch; the great and majestic lion Aslan, King of Narnia; and four children transported into their world.
Details: 2 p.m. Saturday, running through Dec. 23, at Actor’s Playhouse, Balcony Theatre, 280 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables; 305-444-9293 or www.actorsplayhouse.org; $20; Sensory-Friendly performance at 11 a.m. Saturday for $10.
THIS WILL FLOAT YOUR BOAT WINTERFEST BOAT PARADE
Join more than a million cheering spectators (and more than eight million viewers on TV) along the 12-mile route at this spectacular event billed as The Greatest Show on H2O, featuring with hundreds of thousands of lights, live music groups, celebrities, beauty queens and more.
Details: 6:30-11:55 p.m. Saturday along the New River in Downtown Fort Lauderdale; www.winterfestparade.com; free, grandstand viewing area $20-$25.
MIAMI CHILDREN’S MUSEUM SEASON OF THE ARTS
This series will introduce children and their families to a different form of art every Saturday during the month of December. This week, explore the world of opera with Florida Grand Opera through hands-on activities, live performances, interactive experiences and the thrill of live theater. The day concludes with the family-friendly opera, “Hansel and Gretel.”
Details: Noon-4 p.m. Sunday at the Miami Children’s Museum, 980 MacArthur Cswy., Watson Island, Miami; www.miamichildrensmuseum.org; $20, $15 for Florida residents, free for kids under 12 months.
FEEL THE SPIRIT OVERTOWN HOLIDAY SPECTACULAR
The Community Arts Program (CAP) presents local youth performing a spirited holiday program of contemporary, jazz and holiday favorites in the home of one of Miami’s oldest African-American congregations.
Details: 4 p.m. Sunday at The Historic St. Agnes’ Episcopal Church, 1750 NW 3rd Ave., Miami; www.communityartsprogram.org; free.
VOICES OF ANGELS MIAMI CHILDREN’S CHORUS
Ring in the season with all of the ensembles of the Miami Children’s Chorus singing traditional (“Silent Night,” “Do You Hear What I Hear?”) and contemporary holiday fare during their annual concert.
Details: 4 p.m. Sunday at First United Methodist Church of Coral Gables, 536 Coral Way, Coral Gables; www.miamichildrenschorus.org; $25, $10 seniors and kids 5-18.
Free For All
SNOW IN MIAMI? SNOW FEST PARADE
The entire family will enjoy festive floats, marching bands and photo opps with Santa and other characters. Plus, there’ll be a snow mountain, ice skating rink, rock climbing wall, giant slide, bounce houses, carnival games, edible arts and crafts, and for those who have been nice, a chance to write a letter with your list of wishes to Dear Ole St. Nick.
Details: 6 p.m. Saturday along Northeast 19th Avenue between 164th and 171st streets, North Miami Beach; 305-948-2957 or www.citynmb.com; free.
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