By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
Science of Snow Show.Snow, born Darrin O'Brien, grew up in Toronto's notorious Jamaican quarter. His first breakout success, "Informer," was 1993's incomprehensible hit and spent seven weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard singles chart. What's that? Not the rapper? Never mind. Check out the Discovery Science Center's two-week run of the Science of Snow. Learn about the mythical substance, said to fall in colder climates in place of rain. Make a mockery of the intricate fractal nature of the universe by cutting your own paper snowflake. Discovery Science Center, 2500 N. Main St., Santa Ana, (714) 542-2823. Dec. 17-31. Call for hours. Closed Christmas Day.
Stalag 17. Ever feel like a prisoner at your family or office holiday party, forced to see people you don't really like, eat food you loathe and basically live like a prisoner of war? Here's your chance to commiserate with real prisoners. They're the cast of Stalag 17, the stage adaptation of the Academy Award-winning film starring William Holden. Watch in breathless excitement (really, the best kind of excitement) as a daring team of Allied prisoners plots a chilling 1944 Christmas Eve escape from a German POW camp. Only one problem: one of them is—gasp—a spy! Try to figure out which one. Here's a clue: he looks like Adolf Hitler dressed as a butler. Maverick Theater, 110 E. Walnut Ave., Fullerton, (714) 526-7070. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m. Through Dec. 23. $13-$16.
Anti-War Protests. It just so happens that the regularly scheduled anti-war demonstrations fall on Christmas Eve, meaning you can join folks in singing "peace on Earth and goodwill to man" and really mean it. Actually, the holiday-tinged protesting begins on the eve of Christmas Eve; subsequent events are held throughout the weekend—attend them all! One word about the Bristol & Anton action, however: South Coast Plaza security has been ticketing demonstrators who park in their lot—even if they've gone inside and done some Christmas shopping first; guess they want the troops to die. The next morning you can snort some sea air as you participate in the Laguna Beach Vigil for Peace in the Middle East. If you're coming from North County, pop in first at the concurrent demo that Anaheim Food Not Bombs holds in La Palma Park. Whichever one you hit first, Laguna or Anaheim, you'll want to throw your signs in the trunk afterward and drive down to San Clemente for that town's Food Not Bombs protest. Orange Coast Peace & Justice Protest at Bristol & Anton, Costa Mesa, (949) 721-1139 (Mike Mang) or (714) 956-5037 (Chuck Anderson). E-mail:email@example.com. Dec. 23, 5:30-7 p.m.; Laguna Beach Vigil for Peace in the Middle East at Main Beach, Ocean Avenue & Pacific Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach, (949) 499-3190. Dec. 24, 1 p.m.; Anaheim Food Not Bombs at La Palma Park, Harbor Boulevard & La Palma Avenue, Anaheim, (714) 526-3576. E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org. Dec. 24, 1 p.m.; San Clemente Food Not Bombs at Max Berg Park, 1100 Calle Puente, San Clemente, (949) 481-5478. E-mail: SCFNB@riseup.net. Dec. 24, 3 p.m.
Medieval Times.Buena Park's palace of feudal war porn celebrates the holidays with all the charm of a medieval Christmas, except for the beating to death of children in memory of King Herod, the expulsion of singers from churches (hence wandering carolers) and the offering of a boar's head to the farming goddess. Nothing says loving Christ like mail-clad towers of testosterone on horseback beating merry hell out of each other (though it's somewhat less terrifying if you're over 12 or haven't touched the sangria). Okay, fine, we admit it; it's the same damn show they do every day. But they do trim a tree, and watching professionals pretend to fight is almost as good as watching your drunken relatives actually brawl. Medieval Times, 7662 Beach Blvd., Buena Park, (888) WE-JOUST. Dec. 25, 5 p.m. $47.95 for adults, $33.95 for children.
Israeli Scouts Hanukkah Candle Lighting.As pedophilia slowly becomes unfashionable, organizations such as the Catholic Church have scrambled to remain "hip" and "law-abiding." No such troubles for the Israeli Scouts of Orange County, a.k.a. Tzofim Tzabar. The leaders are senior scouts, aged 16-18, and all activities are conducted in Hebrew, including this year's Hanukkah Candle Lighting in Irvine on Christmas Day—er, I mean Dec. 25. Illuminate the house without, recite some Berakhot and kindle the light on the right, far from the company of older single men actively seeking the company of children. Merage JCC-Myers Theater, 1 Federation Way, Irvine, (949) 435-3400. Dec. 25, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Nordstrom Men's Half-Yearly.At this moment in your life the path you choose will forever determine your future: you can polish your shoes; you can pay someone to polish them for you; or you can chuck the whole mess and buy new shoes at the Men's Half-Yearly Sale at Nordstrom, beginning early Dec. 26. Prices are low—anywhere from 30 to 50 percent off—and typically, Nordstrom has at least a few pairs of the shoes you wish you had—it's your one chance to get Prada for next-to-nada. Nordstrom South Coast Plaza, 3333 Bristol St., Costa Mesa, (714) 549-8300. Dec. 26-Jan. 5.
Newport Beach Centennial Float.Newport Beach is advertising its centennial with a special Rose Parade float, for which they're soliciting volunteer float builders. Bring scissors and wear old clothes and a baseball hat (Los Angeles Angels hats at your own risk). If you're afraid of heights, stay away from the scaffolding. Look forward to hours of sniffing glue and wearing flowers in your hair. It's not all flowers; you can also comb pine bark, iron corn husks and crush coconuts! Mental note: pocket crushed coconut for piña colada purposes. For information on volunteering from Dec. 26-30, contact Teri Craig at (949) 644-3158 or visit www.newportbeach100.com.