You won't find any complaints about the lack of snow on the ground here, but for whatever reason, it just doesn't feel like the holiday spirit is present yet. If you too are feeling more like Scrooge than one of Santa's elves, there will be plenty of events happening this weekend involving jingle bells and figgy pudding to get you into the yuletide swing of things, and more Christmas specials than you'll know what to do with.
Christmas classics will be on Thursdays on Turner Classic Movies. The 1938 version of "A Christmas Carol" will be on tonight at 8 p.m., followed by "Little Women" (1949) at 9:15 p.m. with Elizabeth Taylor and June Allyson, and "Tenth Avenue Angel" (1948) at 11:30 p.m.
"National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" will air on AMC tonight at 8 p.m. and several more times throughout the weekend, giving you plenty of opportunities to marvel at how badly the Griswolds can wreck any attempt at merriment. Relive your childhood while watching "Twas the Night Before Christmas" on ABC Family Monday, Dec. 7 at 7 p.m., the animated special with those adorable little mice.
Here's your chance to get your face on the small screen. CW23 WNLO is conducting a search for a new spokesperson - male or female - with a live audition this Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. at the McKinley Mall near Macy's Home Store. Come camera-ready and be prepared to give a 2 to 3 minute pitch to producers on why you'd be a great TV spokesperson. If chosen, the new "CW23 Star" will score a year-long gig - visit CW23.com for applications and more information. Break a leg!
What (Not) To Rent
"Four Christmases" is definitely not a new Christmas classic. A few funny moments near the beginning devolves into mean-spirited slapstick for the remainder of the movie. I suppose at some point in an actor's career, doing a frivolous holiday film for a sizable paycheck seems like an attractive option but couldn't Academy Award-winning actress Reese Witherspoon have done better than this? Co-star Vince Vaughn usually guarantees laughs, however they are few and far between, and numerous attempts at gross-out humor are just plain gross. Instead of renting this poor excuse of a Christmas movie, invest those funds into your holiday shopping list.
WHAT REALLY GRINDS MY GEARS
Winter-long hiatuses on TV. Just when "V" was getting good, it's gone after four episodes and won't return to ABC until March 2010. The Winter Olympics will be on instead. After the Dec. 9 episode, "Glee" will go on hiatus until April 2010 in order to make way for "American Idol." Is another season even necessary? Paula Abdul would certainly agree with me.
Fredonia's Christmas extravaganza, Miracle on Main Street, will be going on all day Saturday throughout the village, with a visit from Santa, the tree lighting downtown, caroling, horse-drawn trolley rides and more. As part of the festivities, the 1891 Fredonia Opera House will show "Christmas in Connecticut" on Saturday at 8 p.m., with free admission (be sure to get there early!). "Christmas in Connecticut" is harmless, silly fun and a film that Barbara Stanwyck fans shouldn't miss. It's definitely what I would call a screwball comedy. Stanwyck also played a columnist in "Meet John Doe," and in both films, it's implied that one can make a living off of being a columnist with no other means of income (sort of like Carrie Bradshaw in "Sex & the City," with her closet full of couture and Manolo Blahniks on her feet, despite no other source of income aside from her column). But no matter - suspend that disbelief and enjoy.
At 41 West this weekend: Bills game fun and festivities, starting tonight at 8 p.m.; a performance by the William Marshall Project, with Bill Smith and Marshall Seddon, from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Friday; and Tara Graves on Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m.
Jamestown's annual Christmas parade is downtown on Friday at 6:30 p.m., with Santa Claus stopping by and fireworks to follow.
Since the season is all about giving, help out local charities while potentially finding some unique gifts. Empty Bowls will be held at St. John's United Church of Christ in Dunkirk Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Give a donation and receive a delicious bowl of soup, in a handmade bowl created by a local potter. Empty Bowls is sponsored by the Fredonia Potters Co-op, with efforts contributed by some of the talented folks at Mudslingers, a Fredonia pottery studio.
The SUNY Fredonia School of Music will present its annual holiday concert, "Handel's Messiah" at Rosch Recital Hall Dec. 9 at 7:30 p.m.
April Diodato is an OBSERVER Staff Writer. Give her the dish on what's happening at firstname.lastname@example.org.