Guide to happy holiday events

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Now that we’ve got Thanksgiving under our rapidly expanding belts, the winter holidays are in full swing! Scroll down for a lineup of holiday-themed events, performances and monthlong attraction. And don’t forget to check back — we’ll be adding new events as they come in.

 

Events

pinch of saltA Pinch of SALT For The Holidays

Saturday, Dec. 5, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Pinch Of Salt Warehouse
333 Keawe St.
FREE
More information at ourkakaako.com

Take your family and friends to find unique gifts made by local artists and pop-up retailers, listen to music from DJ Jimmy Taco and a live pianist, make DIY ornaments, pose for holiday photos and enjoy yummy holiday eats and treats.

The first 100 shoppers will get a FREE Our Kaka’ako reusable bag. Free parking will be available in the Salt garage.

 

MSC Christmas Event30th Annual Mililani Christmas Parade & Mililani Shopping Center Christmas Event

Saturday, Dec. 5, 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Mililani Shopping Center
95-221 Kipapa Drive & 95-390 Kuahelani Avenue
FREE
More information at mililanishoppingcenter.com

The parade begins at 9 a.m. at Town Center of Mililani, ending at Mililani Shopping Center along Kipapa Street. Over 1500 marchers, including the Mililani High School Band, antique cars, floats, and Santa Claus will make their way through Mililani Town.

After the parade, stay at Mililani Shopping Center for free family friendly activities. Enjoy crafts, visits with Santa Claus, games, and a chance to play in eight tons of real “Hawaiian” snow!

 

Honolulu Hale Tree LightingHonolulu City Lights Tree Lighting Ceremony, Parade & Opening Night Festivities

Saturday, Dec. 5, 4 to 11 p.m.
Honolulu Hale
530 S. King St.
FREE
More information at honolulucitylights.org

The focal point for the city’s Christmas celebrations, Honolulu Hale and the Civic Center Grounds come alive with a 50-foot Christmas tree, wreath exhibits, giant Yuletide displays and live entertainment.

The Mayor’s Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony and Parade begins at 6 p.m. and runs until about 11 p.m. with 2,000 marchers, 40 vehicles, 15 floats and 15 bands. It starts at Aala Park, winds through Chinatown and downtown and ends in a closed-off portion of King Street. Mayor Kirk Caldwell lights the giant Christmas tree at 6:30 p.m.

 

holiday for heroesHawaii Restaurant Association’s Holiday for Heroes

Friday, Dec. 11, 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Bread + Butter
1585 Kapiolani Blvd.
$50 GA, $40 for HRA Members
More information and tickets at hawaiirestaurant.org

The holidays are here and Hawaii Restaurant Association (HRA) is inviting you to their party! Mix, mingle and celebrate with others over great food, drinks, and live music by Son Caribe Band while you honor Hawaii food service industry stand-out stars.

Free parking available in the building. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Aloha Harvest.

 

kualoa breakfast w santaKualoa Hawaii’s Breakfast with Santa

Saturday, Dec. 12, 8 to 10 a.m.
Kualoa Ranch House
49-560 Kamehameha Hwy.
$20
More information at facebook.com/KualoaHi

Take the keiki out for a holiday breakfast with Santa. Enjoy scrambled eggs, breakfast meats, fruit, rice, pastries and drinks before taking photos with Santa and “Chocolate” the Pony, playing games, getting face painted, and lot of other holiday fun.

Special 20 minute Christmas Trolley Rides through Kualoa will also be available every half hour between 9:30-11 a.m. for $3 per person.

Call 808-213-3101 for reservations.

 

Sea Life ParkBreakfast with Santa at Sea Life Park

Saturday, Dec. 12, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Sea Life Park
41-202 Kalanianaole Hwy.
Keiki (3-12 yrs): $15 breakfast, $27 breakfast with admission, crafts & activities; Adults: $20 breakfast, $32 breakfast with admission, crafts & activities
More information at sealifeparkhawaii.com

Get your letters for Santa ready! Celebrate with him at breakfast in the morning and afternoon, with special appearances by Disney princesses. Holiday kids crafts, activities, and Sea Life Park’s new expanded Discovery Reef Touch Pool, where you can interact with baby sea turtles and other Hawaiian water critters, will be open to those who are willing to pay a little extra.

Breakfast with Santa: 8–10:30 a.m.
Photos with Santa: 9–10:00 a.m.
Storytelling & Photos: 10:30–11:30 a.m., 1:15–2:00 p.m.
Park hours are 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Reservations are required. Call (808) 259-2500.

 

Mele Kalikimaka MarketplaceMele Kalikimaka Marketplace

Saturday, Dec. 12, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. & Sunday, Dec. 13, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Neal Blaisdell Exhibition Hall
777 Ward Ave.
$4 GA, $3 military/seniors (60+), FREE for children 12 & under (with a paying adult)
More information at blaisdellcenter.com

Over 100 exhibitors will be offering a shoppers emporium of Hawaiian style gifts and activities for the whole family. The two-day event will feature winter wonderland with real snow, food samplings, hands-on keiki crafts, photos with Santa, pop up shops, gourmet gifts, year-end inventory specials and more!

 

breakfast with santaBreakfast With Santa

Sunday, Dec. 13, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Ala Moana Hotel, Hibiscus Ballroom
410 Atkinson Dr.
$17 for children (ages 4-10), $25 for adults
More information at outrigger.com

Have breakfast with Santa and enjoy Balloon Monsoon, face painting, Josh the Magician, gingerbread cookie decorating and free photos with Santa! The breakfast buffet includes Spam fried rice, bacon, sausage, eggs, mini omelets, tater tots, a saimin station, sweet treats and fruits.

For tickets call 944-4333.

 

Frozen SingALongKeiki Courtyard Cinema: “Frozen” Sing-A-Long On Ice

Friday, Dec. 18, 5 p.m. & 7 p.m.
Ward Village Courtyard
1240 Ala Moana Blvd.
$15
More information at wardvillage.com

Keiki Courtyard Cinema is for families and their keiki. Similar to Courtyard Cinema, Keiki Cinema includes one food vendor, complimentary seating, free popcorn and fun/educational themed activities. Instead of the normal monthly Courtyard Cinema experience, attendees can sing along to Disney’s “Frozen” while skating on the outdoor ice rink and enjoying hot chocolate (preferably not all at once).

A $15 ticket gets you an hour and a half of skate time, including skate rentals. Maximum of 120 skaters per screening. Event is first come, first served. Tickets can only be purchased on-site. Parking is free and available across the street in the TJ Maxx parking or in the Ward Centre garage.

 

HNL Nightmarket ChristmasHonolulu Night+Market: Rogue Christmas

Saturday, Dec. 19, 6 to 11 p.m.
Our Kaka’ako
449 Cooke St.
FREE
More information at honolulunightmarket.com

It’s the last Night+Market of 2015, so you’re not going to want to miss it! Eat, shop, and enjoy the live music and fashion shows at Honolulu Night+Market’s Rogue Christmas! Stop by to get some last minute local shopping done and grab a bite to eat from your favorite local food vendors and food trucks!

 

jingle rock runMake-A-Wish Hawaii’s 3rd Annual Jingle Rock Run

Sunday, Dec. 20, 5:30 p.m.
‘Iolani Palace
364 S King St.
$35 Adult Registration, $25 Keiki Sprint & 5K, $30 Military Adult, $40 Adult & Pet Division
More information and registration at jinglerockrun.com

Make-A-Wish Hawaii brings back the family-friendly holiday 5K walk/run to help raise funds to grant wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions. This year’s new course that begins at ‘Iolani Palace and passes the Honolulu City Lights. There is also a special pet division and a short half-mile Keiki Sprint for children 12 and under.

Same day registration begins at 1 p.m. and pre-race entertainment and food will be offered at 4 p.m. The Keiki Sprint begins at 5:30 p.m., followed by the 5K start at 6 p.m.

 

Performances

Ward holiday concert seriesHoliday Concert Series

Dec. 5, 12 and 19, 7 to 8 p.m.
Ward Village Courtyard
1240 Ala Moana Blvd.
FREE
More information at wardvillage.com

Head over to the Ward Warehouse amphitheater stage for concerts that are FREE and open to the public. Concerts all begin at 7 p.m. and showcase different local artists each week.

December 5: Kaumualii and Pilikanaka
December 12: Natalia Kamauu
December 19: Kupaoa

 

Kahala Mall Holiday ConcertsSongs of the Season

Through Dec. 23
Kahala Mall, Center Court
4211 Waialae Ave.
FREE
More information at kahalamallcenter.com


More than 60 community groups and five professional acts will take the stage to bring more cheer to your holiday shopping. Check the website for times of non-professional performances.

Professional acts include:
December 5: Mailani Makainai
December 12: Maunalua
December 18: Streetlight Cadence
December 19: Kuana Torres Kahele
December 20: Kupaoa and Mark Yamanaka

 

HYOC Holiday ConcertOkage Sama De: HYOC’s Holiday Concert

Saturday, Dec. 12, 7 p.m.
Kawaiaha’o Church
957 Punchbowl St.
FREE
More information at hyoc.org

Hawaii Youth Opera Chorus’ 54th annual holiday concert will feature all 120 members, all in grades K through 12. HYOC will be performing “Ceremony of Carols” by Britten and “Time for Makahiki” from “La’ieikawai, Princess of Paliuli” by McKay.

The concert is free to attend, but free will offerings will be accepted.

 

HSO Holiday PopsHoliday Pops Featuring Maestro Rob Fisher and Nā Leo Pilimehana

Saturday, Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m. & Sunday, Dec. 13, 2 p.m.
Blaisdell Concert Hall
777 Ward Ave.
$27-$79 GA; $13 student rush tickets; $20 military tickets
More information and tickets at hawaiisymphonyorchestra.com

The second concert in Hawaii Symphony Orchestra’s musicthatPOPS series features Maestro Rob Fisher leading the HSO in the premiere Holiday Pops event, featuring classics with a local twist. HSO welcomes Hawaii’s favorite vocal trio, Nā Leo Pilimehana, to the stage for joyful concerts featuring their own music and definitive renditions of songs including “Jingle Bell Rock” and “O Holy Night.” Everyone is invited to participate in the traditional audience holiday singalong.

The program will feature “Sleigh Ride,” “Fantasia on Greensleeves” and other festive orchestral standards, as well as hit music from holiday movies like “The Polar Express” and “Miracle on 34th Street.”

 

Gay Men's Chorus Holiday CarolA Holiday Carol

Sunday, Dec. 13, 5:30 p.m.
Hawaii Theatre
1130 Bethel St.
$23-$43 GA, $18-$38 military/student/senior (65+)
More information and tickets at gmcofh.org

Journey through the holidays with Scrooge as the Gay Men’s Chorus of Honolulu presents a winter concert. Scrooge – a lonely, grumpy gay man – couldn’t care less about the holidays. On a mission to change his perspective and perhaps his life, the Spirits of each season, with the help of the Gay Men’s Chorus, visit Scrooge one by one on the eve of the new year and take him on a journey through the holidays. From Valentine’s Day, Fourth of July, Halloween and finally Christmas – can the Spirits change Scrooge’s point of view and make him come to understand the true spirit of each season?

Special offers on tickets include a family 4-pack of $144 (discounted $40 seats) or $72 (discounted $20 seats). Also, if you buy nine regular price tickets, you’ll get one free.

 

Classical ChristmasA Classical Christmas

Wednesday, Dec. 16, 7:30 p.m.
Hawaii Theatre
1130 Bethel St.
$27-$68
More information and tickets at hawaiisymphonyorchestra.com

The classic sounds of Christmas are the hallmark of a joint concert bringing together the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra and the beautiful voices of the Oahu Choral Society under the direction of Dr. Esther S. Yoo. Audience members are invited to sing along to the grande finale: the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s “Messiah.”

Also featured: the Oahu Choral Society performing Bach’s Magnificat in D Major and a work closely associated with holidays, Vivaldi’s Concerto for Four Violins in B Minor. Don’t miss this opportunity to experience the joy of a symphony orchestra and chorus together in concert and escape the stress of holiday hustle and bustle.

 

Ballet Hawaii NutcrackerBallet Hawaii: The Nutcracker

Dec. 18 to 20, 7:30 p.m.
Blaisdell Concert Hall
777 Ward Ave.
$35-$99 GA, $5 off for military/students/seniors (65+) at box office (not including $35 tickets)
More information and tickets at blaisdellcenter.com and ballethawaii.org

Ballet Hawaii brings to the stage a holiday tradition that this year features an amazing cast of international dance stars.

Ages 4 & up will need to purchase a ticket for entry. Groups of 10+ can get 10 percent off for non-$35 tickets. A VIP dinner package at Chef Chai restaurant on Friday, Dec. 18 includes dinner at 5 p.m., VIP ticket and reserved parking.

 

Rock-A-Hula Magical ChristmasRock-a-Hula Magical Christmas

Dec. 24 & 25, 8:30 p.m.
Royal Hawaiian Center Theatre, 4th Floor
2201 Kalakaua Ave
$55-$85 for adults (show only), $33-$51 for children (show only), $105+ for adults (with dinner), $63+ for children (with dinner)
More information and tickets at rockahulahawaii.com

Let Rock-A-Hula put you in the holiday spirit with dinner and a show! Three packages are available to choose from, all including gourmet food, premium beverages, a dazzling Rock-A-Hula show, an exciting meet-and-greet, special Christmas music and dessert!

There’s also a “Legendary Cocktail Show” package also available if you just want to see the show (excludes dinner and Christmas dessert).

 

HSO Ode To JoyOde To Joy

Tuesday, Dec. 29 & 30, 7:30 p.m.
Blaisdell Concert Hall
777 Ward Ave.
$34-$92 GA; $13 student rush tickets; $20 military tickets
More information and tickets at hawaiisymphonyorchestra.com

Maestro JoAnn Falletta returns to lead the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra and the Oahu Choral Society in a program featuring Bach’s joyous Prelude and Fugue in E-flat Major and Beethoven’s famous Symphony Number 9, “Ode to Joy.”

Included in the ticket price is Concert Conversations, with JoAnn Falletta and HSO Concertmaster Iggy Jang discussing the program and answering questions for an hour before each performance.

 

Ongoing happenings

Ward Village Ice RinkWard Winter Village Ice Rink

Through Jan. 10
4 to 9 p.m., Mon. to Thurs.; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Fri. to Sun.
Ward Village Courtyard
1240 Ala Moana Blvd.
$15
More information at wardvillage.com

Ward Village has set up a big white tent and an outdoor ice rink in the courtyard behind the IBM Building! A $15 ticket gets you an hour and a half of skate time, including skate rentals. Tickets can be purchased on-site. Parking is free and available across the street in the TJ Maxx and Ward Centre garages.

A Tuesday 2-For-1 offer is available on Dec. 1, Dec. 8 and Jan. 5: Buy one admission and get one free! Also, free 15-minute group skating lessons will be offered on Wednesday, Dec. 2 starting at 5:45 p.m. along with paid admission.

Check website for holiday hours and private event closures.

 

Honolulu City LightsHonolulu City Lights

Dec. 5 to Jan. 1
6:30 p.m.
Honolulu Hale
530 S. King St.
FREE
More information at honolulucitylights.org

The month-long Honolulu City Lights is the focal point for Oahu’s Christmas celebration. Honolulu Hale and the Civic Center Grounds come alive with a 50-foot Christmas tree, wreath exhibits, giant Yuletide displays and live entertainment. Food and souvenir vendors will be there in the evenings.

The event is hosted by the City and County of Honolulu in partnership with the Friends of Honolulu City Lights.

 

Ward Trolley ToursCity Lights Trolley

Dec. 6 to Dec. 30
Tours start at 6:30 p.m.
Ward Warehouse Trolley Stop
$6.50; FREE for children 3 and under
More information and tickets at wardvillage.com

Experience the ultimate holiday outing by taking a swing through the state’s most anticipated light display. A portion of proceeds from ticket sales will benefit the Hawaii Foodbank.

Tickets can only be purchased online. Children 3 and under ride free, but must sit on an adult’s lap. Riders must be at the trolley stop at least 10 minutes before departure with ticket; late arrivals may lose their seat reservations and there’ll be no refunds.

 

PCC 12 days12 Days of Christmas at the Polynesian Cultural Center

Dec. 10 to Dec. 23, Mon. through Sat. only
11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Polynesian Cultural Center, Hukilau Marketplace
55-370 Kamehameha Hwy.
FREE admission, $5 canoe rides, $3 train ride (5+ yrs), FREE train ride for children 4 and under
More information at hukilaumarketplace.com

Visit the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) during the 12 Days of Christmas holiday celebration for food, fun and live entertainment – and take your family photo with Santa Claus! The celebration will also feature holiday canoe rides, special holiday sales, and a number of family fun activities.

Build a snowman on Saturday, Dec. 19 from 2 to 5 p.m. when PCC brings in snow for a bonafide snow day!

The Hukilau Marketplace will be decorated with holiday trimmings and offer free live entertainment, including performances by the Makaha Sons, Weldon Kekauoha, Natalie Ai Kamauu. Merchants will also be offering special holiday sales, with discounts of up to 50% off the retail value.

The Hukilau Marketplace offers free admission, parking and WiFi to guests, who can shop at more than 40 shops, carts and kiosks.