It's Christmas Eve. Already. Enjoy with family and friends, and then, have yourself a merry little Christmas.
10 a.m. Thursday: Tickets are on sale for "Brit Floyd," the world's greatest Pink Floyd show, which will return to the Hershey Theatre on Saturday, April 16 at 8 p.m. Brit Floyd continues their amazing journey through 50 years of Pink Floyd and their incredible catalog of music. Tickets for this show range from $37.35 to $62.35 and are available at the Hershey Theatre Box Office. They can be charged by phone at 717-534-3405 or 800-745-3000 ad online at www.HersheyEntertainment.com or www.TicketMaster.com.
Noon, Thursday: For the little ones, this is more fun that a muddy puddle, as "Peppa Pig's" first-ever U.S. theatrical tour, "Peppa Pig's Big Splash," will make its Hershey Theatre debut on Tuesday, April 5 at 6 p.m. This is an action-packed live show, based on the popular Peppa Pig television series for preschoolers and young fans. Tickets for this show range from $27.85 to $57.85 and are available at the Hershey Theatre Box Office. They can be charged by phone at 717-534-3405 or 800-745-3000 and online at www.HersheyEntertainment.com or www.TicketMaster.com.
5 p.m. Thursday and Friday: Make your Christmas Eve extra-special by taking a drive through Hershey's "Sweet Lights," nearly 600 illuminated and animated holiday displays, covering two miles of wooded trails. Open the same hours for Christmas Day, too. Enjoying brilliant holiday displays from the comfort of a warm car, while listening to Christmas music, is a treat the kids will long remember. "Sweet Lights " will be open from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. every day until, and including, New Year's Eve. Directions: From Hersheypark Drive, go north on Sand Beach Road for one-half mile, then follow signs to Boathouse Road to the "Sweet Lights" entrance.
6 p.m. Thursday and Friday: Called "Christmas Paradise in the middle of nowhere," Kozier's Christmas Village outside of Bernville is an amazing display of holiday lights. It's also one of the few local attractions that is open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, while still maintaining the religious significance of the holiday. With millions of lights, hot foods, shops and Santa, Christmas Village is a traditional 'must-see' event. Christmas Village is open until 9 p.m. Friday evenings and is open Saturdays, 5 to 9:30 p.m., and Sundays, 5 to 9 p.m. The Village is open seven nights a week until Jan.1. Admission is 3 and under, free; 4 to 10, $8; 11-64, $10; and 65 and up, $9. The attraction is located at 782 Christmas Village Road, Bernville. For more information, call 610-488-1110.
Friday, Dec.25 ... CHRISTMAS DAY.
Noon, Saturday, Dec.26: Hersheypark's Christmas Candylane is closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but will reopen on Saturday and will continue until New Year's Eve. Hours are noon to 10 p.m. Sat., Dec.26, and noon to 9 p.m. on Sunday, Dec.27, then 5 to 9 p.m. all week until New Year's Eve, when hours are noon to 5 p.m. The kids will love all the rides, and adults will enjoy the shows, shops and four million sparkling lights that decorate the park. So if you thought your holiday fun ended on the 25th, think again; get out there and enjoy a bracing ride on a roller coaster, then step into a warm shop for some after-Christmas bargains.
6 p.m., Saturday, Dec.26: Return to the year 1783 as you go on the annual "Lantern Tour" offered by the Ephrata Cloister. Located at 632 West Main Street in Ephrata, the Cloister was a religion of aesthetics started by one man. The congregation has gone, but the 1700s-era buildings remain and offer a fascinating look into the past. Tours start every half-hour and focus on the real Brother Amos, with role-playing presented by students. The tours will continue through Dec. 29. Reservations are required. Call 717-733-6600 or go to: www.EphrataCloister.org.
8 p.m., Saturday, Dec.26: The rockin' regional band, the "Luv Gods" will be playing at the Hollywood Casino at Penn National at 777 Hollywood Blvd. in Grantville. They'll be on stage until midnight. If you're looking for good rock and roll, this is a sure bet.
5:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec.27: The metal group "Texas in July" (some hot music) will be performing in The Chameleon Club, 223 N. Water St., Lancaster. Also playing will be "Carousel Kings" and "The Road to Milestone." Tickets for this multi-band event start at $46. For more information or to order tickets, call 800-840-9227.
7:30 p.m., Tues., Dec.29: It isn't all about the 'physical;' stretch your mind by enjoying a game of chess at the Allen Theatre Chess Club. Anyone interested in a good game of chess on a cold winter evening can meet at the Allen Theatre and Coffee House at 36 East Main St., Annville. And, grab a hot cup of their specialty coffees to keep the chill way.
11 a.m., Thurs., Dec.31: Start your New Year's festivities a little early by having fun at The Hershey Story Museum's "Rock Around the Clock." Celebrate throughout the day, in fact, as kids are invited to join in a "bubble wrap stomp" at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Between stomps, listen to five decades of party music, courtesy of a DJ. Activities take place in the Grand Lobby and also, the patio, weather permitting. Call 717-534-8939 for more details or go to: www.hersheystory.org.
4 p.m. Thursday, Dec.31: Hershey's Chocolate World is hosting a family New Year's Eve celebration until 9 p.m., with a variety of activities, including a dance party and appearances by the Hershey product characters. Admission is free and no reservations are needed. Chocolate World will be open all day New Year's Eve, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. After that, head on over to downtown Hershey for a New year's celebration at the corners of Chocolate and Cocoa avenues.
9 p.m., Thursday, Dec.31: This will make for a happenin' New Year's; the classic rock band "Junior's Farm" will be playing in the ballroom of the Temple Fire Company, in Temple. This is the band's last scheduled show, so come on out to say "good-bye," as well as enjoy a night of rocking music. Light snacks, party favors and a champagne toast at midnight will be provided. No tickets are required, call for reservations at 610-929-3374.
9 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 31: For a fantastic night of classic rock, trek on over to the Pioneer Hose Fire Co. in Robesonia at 32 W. Penn Avenue to hear one of the best bands around, The Mike Schwartz Band. These guys never phone it in. From CCR to the Beatles to the Zombies to the Foo Fighters; it's the music you want, and they've got it. "Pioneer" has a huge dance floor, so come on down. For more information on this New Year's Eve event, call 484-797-3317.
9 p.m., New Year's Eve: Johnny and Hon's Smokehaus in beautiful downtown Robesonia (actually 924 West Penn Ave.) will bring on the band "Smokin' Soles" for their New Year's Eve party. A price of $15 includes a buffet, drink and champagne toast at midnight. For more information, call 610-589-6397.
10:30 p.m., Thurs., Dec.31: Hey, it's New Year's Eve. How did that happen? Gather together for some fun at this year's New Year's Eve Bologna Drop at Ninth and Cumberland streets in Lebanon. The music starts at 10 p.m. with DJ Rich. Bundle up; you might want to dance to keep warm.
10:30 p.m., Thurs., Dec.31: Richland Borough has their own New Year's Eve Drop; a huge cigar, to remember cigar-factory days from earlier times. The folks at the Neptune Fire Company along Main Street will have a good evening cooked up for visitors. Contact the Richland Heritage Society for more information.
11 a.m., Friday, Jan.1, New Year's Day: How does sauerkraut mix with hiking? Come on out to the Governor Dick Environmental Center and find out. You don't really want to spend the day in front of the TV, do you? The environmental center will be sponsoring a New Year's Day "Hike and Kraut." This will be a three- to four-mile hike, followed by hot dogs and sauerkraut in the environmental center. Cost is $5 per person. The Center is located at 3283 Pinch Road in Mt. Gretna. Participants must pre-register. To do so, call 717-964-3808 or email: email@example.com. Leave a name and number in case program cancels.
7 p.m., Saturday, Jan.2: "Mr. Z and the Night Shift" will be the featured band at Johnnie and Hon's Smokehaus in Robesonia. They'll be playing until 10 p.m. On Sunday, Jan.3, super guitarist Chaz DePaolo will be playing some great guitar, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 610-589-6397. The Smokehaus also continues their country line dancing this year, every Sunday, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Come on down to "hee-haw" it up.
5 p.m., Friday, Jan.8: This will be the new year's "first" First Friday Artwalk in Downtown Lebanon. This evening will feature Andrew O'Donnell and photography by Sarah Cornelius. Sponsored by the Lebanon Valley Council on the Arts, come on out and enjoy the revitalization of the city, one event at a time.
5 p.m., Friday, Jan.8: Enjoy performers each Friday in the "Cafe At 10,000 Villages" along Route 272 in Ephrata. This evening's entertainment will be singer/songwriter Leah Weigel, a student at the Berklee College of Music, who is proficient in piano and guitar. For more information, call 717-721-8418.
5 p.m., Sat., Dec.16: Every third Saturday of the month, music lovers are invited to listen to or participate in the music of the Celtic diaspora on the third floor of the Lebanon Farmers' Market, 33 S. Eighth St., in the Foundry Craft Grillery. Singers and musicians at all levels of accomplishment who enjoy playing in the Celtic style are welcome. Free admission for a night of lovely sound.
5 p.m. Sunday, Jan.17: The kids are sure to enjoy "pajamas night" at the AACA Museum on Museum Drive, Hershey, when the 1968 classic movie "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" is shown on the big screen in the museum. Kids are encouraged to wear pajamas, bring pillows and blankets and stuffed animals, for a cozy experience. It will also be the last chance to see the national touring CCBB car. Admission for this event also covers kid-friendly foods, like popcorn, hot dogs, pizza, hot chocolate and cookies. The movie begins at 6 p.m.
6 p.m., Sat., Jan.23: Celebrate the life of Scotland's national poet with Lebanon's own "Burns Night," featuring an evening of Scottish food and drink, music and poetry. Tickets are $45 per person and include a full meal, plus Scotch whiskey and authentic beers. Guests are invited to dress in plaid or formal kilt or gown. The haggis will be brought in for serving to the music of the bagpipes, and "Auld Lang Syne" will end the evening. For more information, call the Lebanon Valley Council on the Arts at 273-0033.