Weekend Best Bets: November 29-December 1

Friday, Nov. 29

How Continental

WHAT: Excelsior Christkindlsmarkt
WHERE: Excelsior Brewing Co., Excelsior
WHEN: 10 a.m.
Rather than lining up outside Best Buy immediately after pounding down your pumpkin pie, consider another holiday shopping option: spending your Black Friday in a far more relaxed atmosphere. The Excelsior Christkindlsmarkt is based on traditional winter open air markets in Germany that celebrate all the season has to offer. Stop by and see Santa or enjoy lakeside views with a steaming cup of cocoa—and, of course, don’t forget to browse the pretty gifts and handmade treats. Learn more at excelsiorchristkindlsmarkt.com.

Friday, Nov. 29


WHAT: The Holidazzle Parade Opening Night
WHERE: Nicollet Mall, Mpls.
WHEN: 6:30 p.m.
Although it may be cliché to suggest attending the Holidazzle as a must-do Twin Cities activity during the holiday season, we’d be remiss not to mention it. Catch this dazzling event while you still can: the 21-year-old parade is wrapping up its run, so this is the last year to raise a cup of cocoa to the lights, the floats, and the characters that, yes, have made this a must-do for the true Minneapolis Christmas experience. Learn more at holidazzle.com.

Saturday, Nov. 30


WHAT: St. Paul Young Leadership 3rd Annual Hanukrawl
WHERE: Pre-party at The Wild Onion, crawl through St. Paul
WHEN: 7 p.m.
With the beginning of Hannukah and Thanksgiving on the same day this year, your feast may include latkes and macaroons in addition to turkey and pie, but don’t forget that the fun lasts for eight days. The Hanukrawl through St. Paul is a themed celebratory pub crawl on party buses, with proceeds going to support the Jewish Federation of Greater St. Paul. Learn more at jewishminnesota.org.

Saturday, Nov. 30

Tradition on a Platter

WHAT: What’s Your Food Tradition?
WHERE: American Swedish Institute, Mpls.
WHEN: 1 p.m.
No matter your religion or heritage, there’s bound to be a great holiday dish that evokes tradition and spirit. Head to the American Swedish Institute to share yours with other Minnesotans. Bring a favorite dish or recipe and come prepared to share the story behind it; this holiday potluck promises to be a treat for both the taste buds and the soul. Learn more at asimn.org.

Sunday, Dec. 1

A New Home for George Bailey

WHAT: It’s a Wonderful Life onstage
WHERE: Lyric Arts Main Street Stage, Anoka
WHEN: 2 p.m.
While the film may play on TV all season long, this stage version of It’s a Wonderful Life (with a cast or more than 20) may make you see the story in a whole new way. Join George Bailey as he wonders what his town would be like without him. Cynics should prepare to have hearts duly warmed. Learn more at lyricarts.org.

Sunday, Dec. 1

A Holly Jolly Trolley

WHAT: Holly Trolley Ride with Santa
WHERE: Como-Harriet Streetcar Line, Mpls.
WHEN: 12:30 p.m.
Taking the kids to the mall to see Santa is a classic move, but long lines and cranky tots can be a definite deterrent. Go for something a little more creative this year and head to the Como-Harriet Streetcar to take a trolley ride on a car decked out for the holidays. Includes a visit and pictures with Santa, and a chat with other Christmas icons such as Mrs. Claus and Scrooge. Learn more at trolleyride.org.

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