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Holiday Guide Feature

The Holiday Guide

City Paper's 2005 Guide to Seasonal Events and Places.

Illustrations by Daniel Krall

Holiday Guide 2005

O Holy Crap City Paper’s Annual Holiday Guide

Gobble Gobble Hey The Idyllic But Brief Life of a Domestic Turkey is Nothing If Not Mundane | By Erin Sullivan

The Santa Clause Memories of a Family's Annual Search for a Black Santa | By Vincent Williams

Holiday Boot Camp | By Emily Flake

Makin' Tracks A Local Company Creates Model Train Layouts for Grownups | By Michelle Gienow

A Holiday Fixer-Upper Amateur, Unlicensed Contracting Adds to the Authenticity of Baltimore-Style Gingerbread Row House | By Edward Ericson Jr.

Dear Santa Our Christmas Wish List For the City

Oil We Want for Christmas City Paper’s Guide to Spending Money You Don’t Have

Members Only A Guide to the Privileges that Come with Membership to Local Cultural Institutions

The Holiday Guide City Paper's 2005 Guide to Seasonal Events and Places.

Posted 11/16/2005

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Bach and Handel: Oratorio in Perspective, 4:30 p.m. Dec. 18, Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, (410)-366-6544, $20-40. The Handel Choir of Baltimore will sing selections from Bach’s Weihnacts-Oratorium and the Christmas classic, Handel’s Messiah.

Baltimore School for the Arts Concert, 7 p.m. Dec. 2, Old St. Paul’s Church, 233 N. Charles St., (410) 396-1185, free. This collection of some of the finest young musicians in the city will be performing Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb as well as folk music from England and China.

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra presents Handel’s “Messiah”, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 10, 3 p.m. Dec. 11, Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St., (410) 783-8000,, $25-$75. This beloved holiday concert features conductor Edward Polochick, the BSO, and the Concert Artists of the Baltimore Symphonic Chorale.

“Cantate Sing!”, 3 p.m. Dec. 4, Children’s Chorus of Maryland, Towson Presbyterian Church, 400 W. Chesapeake, (410) 494-1480, $10-$15.When we were kids, the holidays were a more innocent time before they turned into a two-month, frenzied state of indigestion. The Children’s Chorus takes us back there, if but for a little while, to remind us of the simplicity of joyous music. Because they will be recording live at the performance, children under 5 will not be admitted, boo.

A Cappella Concert, 8 p.m. Nov. 20, Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg Center for Physics and Astronomy, Schafler Auditorium, 3505 N. Charles St., (443) 287-9960. Ketzev is an undergrad a cappella group at the Johnny Hop, and it will be performing everything from traditional Hebrew songs to modern Israeli pop music. The program will also feature Kol Sasson, a Jewish a cappella group from University of Maryland.

Christmas Concert, 2 p.m. Dec. 4, Garrett Jacobs Mansion, 11 W. Mount Vernon Place, (443) 8550-7359,, $5-$17. The Largely Ludwig Chamber Ensemble features a performance with sopranos Christine Kavanagh, Erika Knepp, Bolormaa Jugdersuren, and others.

Christmas Festival of Lessons and Carols, Dec. 11 and 17-18, Maryland State Boychoir, Cathedral Church of Saint Matthew, 3400 Norman Ave., (410) 668-2003, $10-$15. For hundreds of years, the more solemn moments of Christmas have involved the dulcet and haunting sounds of boys’ choirs. The Maryland State Boychoir has performed internationally, and their holiday venue will include the works of John Rutter, Boris Orid, and familiar carols from around the world.

Christmas with Choral Arts featuring Sweet Honey in the Rock, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 6, Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, 5200 N. Charles St., (410) 523-7070,, (410) 523-7070, $20-$40, students half price. Choral Arts will be singing a mix of classical music and sing-alongs. Special guest Sweet Honey in the Rock is a Grammy-Award winning African-American a cappella group that has deep roots in spirituals and jazz. As if those two talented groups were not enough, several personalities from WMAR-TV will be reading seasonal works for the audience.

Creative Sounds of the Season, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 2, Inscape Theatre, Villa Julie College, 1525 Greenspring Valley Road, Stevenson, (410) 486-7000. Here in the City-of-a-Bajillion-Colleges, there are lots of holiday concerts, and lots of them are free—but when was the last time you checked in on Villa Julie? Just because it’s small, doesn’t mean they don’t have a fine group of singers who can joyfully get you in the holiday spirit.

Goucher Chamber Symphony, 7 p.m. Nov. 16, Haebler Memorial Chapel, Goucher College, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, (410) 337-6507, free. The word “free” and holiday events are rarely seen in the same context, much less one that can provide you with the sense of relaxation and quiet you need during this time. The symphony will perform Grieg’s Holberg Suite and a piece from Amahl and the Night Visitors.

Helicon Winter Solstice Concert, 3:30 and 8 p.m. Dec. 17, Kraushaar Auditorium at Goucher College, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, (410) 243-7254, website, $18-$25. Ken Koldner, Chris Norman, and Robin Bullock form the trio Helicon, which incorporates the hammered dulcimer, tin whistle, and the cittern among the plethora of other instruments in their show. One need not be pagan to enjoy this Baltimore solstice tradition, which is in its 20th year.

Holiday Spectacular, Dec. 16-22, Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St., (410) 783-8000,, $12-$75. Step out of Baltimore and into New York without the tolls and Jersey drivers—the BSO brought out the big guns for their “Orchestra Meets Broadway” event, which features costumes, choreography, and set designs by a team whose work has included The Lion King. Over 100 singers, dancers, and entertainers will perform.

The Joy of Christmas: A Norwegian Festival, Dec. 9-11, Washington National Cathedral, Massachusetts and Wisconsin avenues N.W., Washington, (202) 537-5527, In honor of the 100th anniversary of Norwegian independence, the Cathedral Choral Society will be singing contemporary and traditional Norwegian holiday music.

Merry Tuba Christmas, 3:30 p.m. Dec. 10, Harbor Place, (877) 225-8466, It’s brassy, it’s sassy—it’s 200 tubas and euphoniums playing Christmas carols in the Inner Harbor. It may be worth staking out the traffic to catch this show and get your oompah on.

Morgan State University Choir Christmas Concert, 4 p.m. Dec. 11, Murphy Fine Arts Center, Morgan State University, 2201 Argonne Drive, (443) 885-4440, Sure, carolers may be clogging your sidewalk and “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer” may be pounding through your skull, but Reader’s Digest named Morgan State’s group “America’s Best College Choir” last year. Chances are this group is gonna tear it up and send you home having heard Christmas tunes like you’ve never heard ‘em before.

New Year’s in Old Vienna Waltzes, 7 and 8 p.m. Jan. 1 and 7, Longwood Gardens, US Route 1, Kennet Square, Penn., (610) 388-1000, website, $2-$15, kids under 6 free. You may have made a fool of yourself the night before and left with a lampshade . . . somewhere on your body, so you owe it to yourself and the people who once respected you to immerse yourself in some culture. Rudolph Lucente will perform traditional Viennese waltzes on a digital organ.

Organ Sing-Alongs, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30, and 4:30 p.m. Jan. 1, Longwood Gardens, US Route 1, Kennet Square, Penn., (610) 388-1000, website, $2-$15, under age 6 free. If you don’t intend to glue yourself to the television on New Year’s Day, spread some cheer and warble your fave holiday tunes along with a digital organ performance. Guest organists Marc Cheban, Justin Hartz, Don Kinnier, and Rudolph Lucente play.

Dianne Reeves: “Christmas Time is Here,” 7 p.m. Dec. 20, Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, 801 Chase St., Annapolis, (410) 263-5544,, $37-$41. This Grammy-award winning songstress will surely melt the icicles of your winterized heart like a warm mug of mulled wine. Like her celebrated predecessors, Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan, Reeves versions of classics such as “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” may be just what your chilly December calls for.

Service of Lessons and Carols, 5 p.m. Dec.7, Haebler Memorial Chapel, Goucher College, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, (410) 337-6507, free. This annual service is performed with the Office of the Chaplain and provides a solemn respite that reflects upon the original reason for Christmas.

Smooth Jazz Christmas with Dave Koz and Friends, 8 p.m. Dec. 9, Hippodrome Theatre, France-Merrick Performing Arts Center, 12 N. Eutaw St., (410) 752-7444, website, $37.50-57.50. David Benoit, Patti Austin, and Jonathan Butler join Dave for a cozy, jazzy night.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 21, 1st Mariner Arena, 201 West St., (410) 347-2010, website, $42.50. We know—you hear Trans-Siberian, and your first thought is fur-wearing burly people who sing Russian dirges. Little did you know, the TSO involves an orchestral string section, a rock band, pyrotechnics, and a laser-light show.

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Holiday Guide Feature archives

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Stuffed (11/18/2009)
The 2009 City Paper Holiday Guide

The Gifts That Count (11/18/2009)
The presents that have stayed in our writers' thoughts

The Wish List (11/18/2009)
Gifts we wish we could afford

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