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Theatre: Escaping the big bad wolf

A childless couple on a journey to break a witch’s curse encounter favorite storybook characters who are in the middle of their own quandaries in “Into the Woods,” with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim.

“Into the Woods.” Through Nov. 18. Act3 Productions, 6285 Roswell Road. Sandy Springs. 770-241-1905.

Book festival: Literary minds

The 26th annual Book Festival of the Marcus Jewish Community Center celebrates acclaimed authors with such notable names as Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, veteran newsman Dan Rather and songwriter Steve Dorff.

The Marcus Jewish Community Center Book Festival. Through Nov. 20. 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. 678-812-4005.

Theater: Like a light bulb

Jon Ludwig’s adaptation of the classic animated TV special “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” is not just a delight, it offers a pretext to check out the Center for Puppetry Arts’ exhibits at the holidays.

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.” Through Dec. 31. Center for Puppetry Arts, 1404 Spring St. 404-873-3391.

Festival: Down the garden path

The Atlanta Botanical Garden goes electric with its annual “Garden Lights, Holiday Nights” display, which includes an expanded Tunnel of Light as well as such displays as the Walk of Flames, the Orchestral Orbs and Model Trains.

Garden Lights, Holiday Nights. Through Jan. 7. Atlanta Botanical Garden, 1345 Piedmont Ave. 404-876-5859.

Ballet: Greetings, Sugar Plum Fairy

“The Nutcracker” rings in the season with two productions nearby. Northeast Atlanta Ballet company performs the holiday classic to live music by Gwinnett Symphony Orchestra. And Johns Creek’s North Atlanta Dance Theatre stage the classic version of E.T.A. Hoffman’s tale at Blessed Trinity Fine Arts Theater.

“The Nutcracker.” Through Nov.16. Infinite Energy Center. 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth. 770-813-7500.; Dec. 2-4. Blessed Trinity Fine Arts Center, 11320 Woodstock Road, Roswell. 770-772-8000.

Tree lighting: Light-up Dunwoody

Cheek-Spruill House grounds transform into a Christmas village for Dunwoody’s annual tree lighting event. Festivities include the lighting of a menorah and visits with Santa and his reindeer. Bring your own camera.

Light-up Dunwoody. Nov. 19. Cheek Spruill Farm House, 5455 Chamblee Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. 731-693-4679.

Tree lighting: Winter wonderland

Avalon holds a daylong holiday event with the arrival of Santa and the opening of its seasonal skating rink, Avalon on Ice. The Christmas tree lighting includes fireworks.

Avalon Tree Lighting. Nov. 19. 2200 Avalon Blvd., Alpharetta.

Tree lighting: Holiday glisten

Residents celebrate the season with the lighting of a giant dreidel and a 30-foot Christmas tree. Elementary school choruses will sing carols, and students can sign a large card for military patients at local veterans hospitals. A box will be available for unwrapped gifts for “Toys for Tots.”

Christmas Tree and Dreidel Lighting. Nov. 30. Newtown Park. 3150 Old Alabama Road, Johns Cree. 678-512-3261.


Theatre: Home sweet home

Audiences enjoy a taste of the apple in Atlanta playwright Phillip DePoy’s “Christmas at Sweet Apple,” a heartwarming holiday story based on experiences shared in the late Celestine Sibley’s AJC columns.

“Christmas at Sweet Apple.” Dec. 1-17. Stage Door Players, 5339 Chamblee Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. 770-396-1726.

Tree Lighting: Looking a lot like Christmas

Santa arrives with snow for Alpharetta’s tree-lighting festivities. Other highlights include face painting, craft activities, a Christmas farmers market and food trucks. Mayor Bell Isle will lead a reading of “Twas the Night Before Christmas.”

Alpharetta Tree Lighting. Alpharetta City Hall, 2 Park Plaza, Alpharetta. Dec. 2. 678-297-6078.

Annual Pilgrimage:

In its 31st year, the Marietta Pilgrimage features six private homes in the Whitlock Avenue district that are decorated for the holidays and open for day tours and candlelight visits on Saturday night.

The Marietta Pilgrimage: A Christmas Home Tour. Dec. 2-3. Whitlock Avenue district, Marietta. 770-429-1115.

Theater: A Dickens of a time

During its year-long renovation, the Alliance Theatre stages its perennial holiday production of “A Christmas Carol” at the Cobb Energy Centre. So expect the same Victorian ghosts and musical epiphanies in different digs.

“A Christmas Carol.” Dec. 8-24. Alliance Theatre, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, 2800 Cobb Galleria Parkway. 404-733-5000.

Music: Alleluia for all

The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s signature holiday performance of Handel’s “Messiah” includes the soaring Chamber Chorus and such featured performers as soprano Jeanine de Bique and baritone Gerard Sundberg.

Handel’s “Messiah.” Dec. 21-22. Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, 1280 Peachtree St. 404-733-4900.

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