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Feature calendars

  • GUIDELIGHT
    Holiday meals• Crescent Avenue United Methodist Church, 1232 Crescent Ave., will have its annual turkey dinner from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday.
  • People and places
    Pet helpAnimal Care & Control is offering free straw to any Allen County resident in need of animal bedding this winter. Straw can be picked up between 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Out and about
    BOOKS TODAY Lee Strobel – Author of “The Ambition” and “The Case for Christ Study Bible”; 5 to 9 p.m.
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Photo illustration by Cathie Rowand and Christy Ke
Tchaikovsky’s classic “Nutcracker” comes alive with the Fort Wayne Ballet at Arts United Center, Dec. 7; visit the Festival of Gingerbread on Dec. 8 at The History Center; Santa and two of his reindeer will be at the Botanical Conservatory on Dec. 15; David Phelps will perform Dec. 18 at the First Assembly of God Church.

Holiday events guide

Whoever decided that Black Friday should start on Thursday this year clearly just wanted to get the jump on Fort Wayne where launching Christmas festivities is concerned.

Nice try.

The start of the Christmas season in Fort Wayne has always happened and will always happen on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.

This makes perfect sense to everyone who lives in northeast Indiana and no sense to anyone who lives outside it.

If you’re in the former group, try not to feel too superior to the latter group. Pity more befits the season.

Here’s a guide to almost everything holiday happening next week until the end of December.

Concerts and recitals

Mannhiem Steamroller – 3 and 7 p.m. Nov. 26; $28 to $69; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

Mannhiem Steamroller – 8 p.m. Nov. 30; $28 to $68; Embassy Theatre, 125 W. Jefferson Blvd.; Ticketmaster, 800-745-3000.

Living Christmas Tree – 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. Dec. 1 and 2; $10 to $12; North Park Community Church, 7160 Flutter Road; 484-1029.

University of Saint Francis’ Christmas Music Concert – 7 p.m. Dec. 2; free; North Campus Auditorium, 2702 Spring St.; 399-8050.

Summit City Singers’ Christmas Concert – 3 p.m. Dec. 2; free; Allen County Public Library Auditorium, 900 Library Plaza.

Bach Collegium presents “Messiah Sing-Along” – 2 p.m. Dec. 2; $5; Queen of Angels Catholic Church, 1500 W. State Blvd.; 485-2143.

“Holiday Pops” – Performed by Fort Wayne Philharmonic; 8 p.m. Dec. 7, 8, 14, 15; 2 p.m. Dec. 15; $25 to $65; Embassy Theatre, 125. W. Jefferson Blvd.; 481-0777.

German Christmas Show – Dinner starts at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 7; $35 for meal and show (reservations required); Fort Wayne Sport Club, 3102 Ardmore Ave.; 244-6964.

Heartland Chamber Chorale Sings Holidays – 7 p.m. Dec. 8; $10 to $20; Auburn Presbyterian Church, 111 West 12th St., Auburn; 436-8080.

Heartland Chamber Chorale Sings Holidays – 2:30 p.m. Dec. 9; $10 to $20; Plymouth Congregational Church, 501 W. Berry St.; 436-8080.

Newsong’s Very Merry Christmas Tour – 7 p.m. Dec. 9; $17 to $50; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

Summit City Singers’ Christmas Concert – 4 p.m. Dec. 9; free; Covenant United Methodist Church, 10001 Coldwater Road.

Summit City Singers’ Christmas Concert – 7 p.m. Dec. 11; free; Towne House Retirement Center, 2209 St. Joe Center Road.

“An Evening with Michael Bolton” – 7 p.m. Dec. 12; $27 to $100; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

“The Joy of Christmas” – With five vocal groups and the Fort Wayne Flute Choir; 4 p.m. Dec. 12; free; St. John Lutheran Church, 729 W. Washington Blvd.

Fort Wayne Philharmonic presents “The Sacred Music of Christmas” – 7 p.m. Dec. 13; $20; First Wayne Street United Methodist Church, 300 E. Wayne St.; 481-0777.

Heartland Chamber Chorale Sings Holidays – 7 p.m. Dec. 15; $10 to $20; Homestead High School auditorium, 4310 Homestead Road; 436-8080.

“Kenny Rogers: Christmas and Hits” – 7 p.m. Dec. 15; $38 to $100; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

Heartland Chamber Chorale Sings Holidays – 2:30 p.m. Dec. 16; $10 to $20; Trinity Evangelical Presbyterian Church, 709 Business 30 West; 436-8080.

“Heaven and Nature Sing” – Featuring Concordia Lutheran High School Music Department; 4 p.m. Dec. 16; $6 to $12; Embassy Theatre, 125 W. Jefferson Blvd.; 483-1102.

“A Christmas with David Phelps” – 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18; $10 to $25; First Assembly of God, 1400 W. Washington Center Road; 490-8585.

Fort Wayne Area Community Band’s Holiday Concert – 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18; $4 and $5; Rhinehart Music Center, IPFW, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E.; 493-3318.

“Holiday Pops” – Performed by Fort Wayne Philharmonic; 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19; $15; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

Craig Morgan and Phil Vassar: Acoustic Christmas – 7:30 p.m. Dec. 22; $20 to $75; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

Holiday events/displays

Pinata Paradise – Now through Dec. 2; regular conservatory hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays, noon to 4 p.m. Sundays (the Conservatory will be open until 8 p.m. from Friday until Dec. 22); Closed Mondays, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day; $5 adults, $3 ages 3 to 17, free to ages 2 and younger; Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St.; 427-6024.

Erin’s House “Lights of Love” – 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Nov. 28 (Closed Thanksgiving Day); free; Parkview Field, 1301 Ewing St.; 423-2466.

Aunt Millie’s Bakeries Lighting – 5:45 p.m. Wednesday; free; Aunt Millie’s Bakeries, 350 Pearl St.

Wolf & Dessauer Santa Sign Lighting – 6:15 p.m. Wednesday; free; corner of Main and Calhoun streets.

Wells Fargo Holiday Display and Lighting of the Indiana Michigan Power Merry Christmas Wreath – 6:45 p.m. Wednesday; free; corner of Wayne and Calhoun streets.

Parkview Field Holiday Fireworks – 7:45 p.m. Wednesday; free; Parkview Field, 1301 Ewing St.; 423-2466.

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas” exhibit – Wednesday through Jan. 6; (kickoff party from 5 to 9 p.m. Wednesday) regular conservatory hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays, noon to 4 p.m. Sundays (the conservatory will be open until 8 p.m. from Friday until Dec. 22); Closed Mondays, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day; $5 adults, $3 ages 3 to 17, free to ages 2 and younger; Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St.; 427-6024.

Festival of Trees – 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday; 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday; noon to 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Nov. 25; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 26 through 28; $3 to $7; 424-5665.

Santa’s Workshop – 4 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday; free; Community Center, 233 W. Main St.; 427-6469.

Festival of Gingerbread – Preview party 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday; $2; History Center, 302 E. Berry St.; 426-2882.

AWS Fantasy of Lights – More than 70 illuminated and animated holiday displays; Wednesday through Dec. 31; 6 to 9 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays; 6 to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; $5 cars, $10 passenger vans and limos; $25 buses and trolleys; $30 horse and carriage rides (weekends); Franke Park; reservations, 744-6145 ext. 2230.

Festival of Gingerbread – Friday through Dec. 9; $5 adults, $3 seniors and students; free children 5 and younger; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday; noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; History Center, 302 E. Berry St.; 426-2882.

Festival of Trains – Friday through Nov. 25; $7 and $8; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Nov. 25; Science Central, 1950 N. Clinton St.; 424-2400.

Christmas at the Fort – 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday; free; Historic Old Fort, 1201 Spy Run Ave.; 437-2836.

Country Christmas – Horse-drawn carriage rides, light displays, chili supper; 6 to 9 p.m. Nov. 30, Dec.1, 7 and 8; free-will offering; Allen Country Fairgrounds, 2726 Carroll Road; 693-9526 or 637-5312.

Christmas on the Farm – 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 1; free; Salomon Park, 817 W. Dupont Road; 427-6000.

Santa and the Reindeer – Noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 1, 8, 15 and 22; $5 adults, $3 ages 3 to 17, free to ages 2 and younger; Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St.; 427-6024.

Christmas in the Castle – Historic Brookside is decorated for the holidays; noon to 5 p.m. Dec. 1, 2, 8 and 9; 1 to 5 p.m. Dec. 7 (Senior Day with reduced admission); $5 a person, $20 for families; University of Saint Francis, 2701 Spring St.; 399-8050.

“The Star Of Bethlehem 2012” – Astronomy show with biblical twist; 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 1, 12:30 and 3 p.m. Dec. 2, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 7, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 8, 5 p.m. Dec. 9, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 14, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 15, 5 p.m. Dec. 16; $4 for adults, $3 for seniors and younger than 18, $14 families; Schouweiler Planetarium at the University of Saint Francis, 2701 Spring St.; 399-8050.

Living Nativity and Lighting of the Lake – 6 p.m. Dec. 2; vigil candles will encircle a segment of Mirror Lake; candles are $10; admission is free; University of Saint Francis, 2701 Spring St.; 399-8050.

Christ Child Festival – 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 14, noon to 8 p.m. Dec. 15, noon to 6 p.m. Dec. 16, free; Memorial Coliseum, 4000 Parnell Ave.

Holiday events

Christmas “At-Home” with the Swinney Sisters – 2 p.m. Nov. 29, 30 and Dec. 1; $15; Fort Wayne’s Historic Swinney Homestead, 1424 W. Jefferson Blvd.; 489-7115.

Snider High School Elizabethan Madrigal Dinner – 7 p.m. Dec. 8 and 5 p.m. Dec. 9; $25 (reservations required); Snider High School, 4600 Fairlawn Pass; 467-4600.

Breakfast with Santa – 9 a.m. Dec. 8; $11; Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St.; 427-6024.

Brunch with Santa – 11 a.m. Dec. 9, 16 and 23; $6.95 to $10.95; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

Performances/dances

“A Christmas Story” – 2 p.m. today; $16 to $24; Fort Wayne Civic Theatre, Arts United Center, 303 E. Main St.; 424-5220.

“The Will Rogers Follies” – 2 p.m. today; $12 to $15; University of Saint Francis Performing Arts Center, 431 W. Berry St.; 797-1699.

Fort Wayne Youtheatre presents “Holiday Tales” – 1 p.m. Friday; free with “Festival of Trees” admission; Embassy Theatre, 125 W. Jefferson Blvd.; 422-6900.

“It’s a Wonderful Life” – 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29, 30, Dec. 1, 7, 8, 14 and 15; 2 p.m. Dec. 2, 9 and 16; $10 to $24; First Presbyterian Theater, 300 W. Wayne St.; 422-6329.

“The Nutcracker” – The perennial Christmastime ballet performed by the Fort Wayne Ballet under the leadership of director Karen Gibbons-Brown; these shows feature Fort Wayne Philharmonic and Fort Wayne Children’s Choir accompaniment: 7 p.m. Nov. 30, 2:30 p.m. Dec. 1; 8 p.m. Dec. 1; these shows will not feature Fort Wayne Philharmonic and Fort Wayne Children’s Choir accompaniment: 2:30 p.m. Dec. 2, 8 and 9; 7 p.m. Dec. 4; 8 p.m. Dec. 7 and 8; Arts United Center, 303 E. Main St; $15 to $45; 422-4226.

Wabash Valley Dance Theater presents “A Christmas Carol” – 2 p.m. Dec. 2; $8 to $10; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

“Max & Ruby in the Nutcracker Suite” – 7 p.m. Dec. 4; $14 to $19; Honeywell Center, 275 W. Market St., Wabash; 260-563-1102.

“Cirque Dreams: Holidaze” – 7:30 p.m. Dec. 5; Tickets start at $28; Embassy Theatre, 125 W. Jefferson Blvd.; Ticketmaster, 800-745-3000.

Bower/North Productions presents “The Case of the Christmas Star” – Social hour starts at 6 p.m. Dec. 14; $34.95 if reservations are made by Thursday; $39.95 thereafter; Courtyard Marriott, 1150 S. Harrison St.; 579-9226.

“The Snow Queen” – 7 p.m. Dec. 14, 2 p.m. Dec. 15 and 16; $10 to $15; Fort Wayne Youtheatre, Arts United Center, 303 E. Main St.; 422-6900.

“Nuts and Crackers 2012” – 2 p.m. Dec. 16; $11 to $13; South Side High School Auditorium, 3601 S. Calhoun St.; 422-4226.

spen@jg.net

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