by: COURTESY OF MICHAEL DURHAM/OREGON ZOO - Oregon ZooLights are a popular holiday attraction, and they continue, along with other area displays, through New Year's Day.

ZooLights, Grotto, Christmas Ships

Places to see during the next couple weeks:

• The 21st season of Winter Wonderland at Portland International Raceway, 1940 N. Victory Blvd., goes through Christmas. Car tours, $16 per car load, start at 5 p.m. most days (

• Oregon Zoo’s Zoolights goes through Jan. 5 at 4001 S.W. Canyon Road. ZooLights features a more immersive experience with many areas lit up for the first time, including a section of the Africa Rainforest that features a twisting 100-foot rainbow-colored tunnel of light. Viewing, which includes $10 for adults and $7 for children, starts at 5 p.m. most days (; ZooLights will be closed Dec. 24 and 25.

• The Grotto’s 26th annual Festival of Lights, 8840 N.E. Skidmore St., goes through Dec. 30, with this year’s theme “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,” highlighting its choir concerts. It opens at 5 p.m. nightly (except Christmas), and it’s $9 for adults (

n Ships and boats decorated in lights and Christmas decorations float the Willamette and Columbia rivers. Tours take place throughout December (

• Homes on Peacock Lane in Southeast Portland draw thousands of visitors each year, with car and/or pedestrian tours starting at 6 p.m. nightly in the area just off Southeast 39th Avenue (

• Pittock Mansion’s “A Locally Crafted Christmas” exhibit remains open through Jan. 2. The mansion, 3229 N.W. Pittock Drive, will be open at 11 a.m. each day except Christmas and New Year’s Day (

• The lighted 5,500-square-foot Queen Anne Victorian Mansion, 1441 N. McClellan St., opens for tours at 6 p.m. weekdays and 5 p.m. weekends (


‘Stumptown Santacon’

It’s that season again, where adult revelry and some 1,000 Santas and other Christmas characters make one heckuva party at downtown Portland bars. It’s the final of four Portland-area “Santacon” events.

Noon-midnight, Saturday, Dec. 21, starting at Punch Bowl Social Food and Drink, 340 S.W. Morrison St., (or “Stumptown Santacon” on Facebook)


Sallie Ford & The Outside

Portland’s own group is staging two shows to close out 2013, after having spent most of the year touring in support of “Untamed Beast.” Sallie announced Tuesday night on Facebook that the group is breaking up. "Hey, everybody," Ford wrote in the Facebook post. "There will be changes for us in 2014. Sallie Ford & The Sound outside have decided to break up and head their separate ways. It is a mutual decision and there are no hard feelings or ill will between any of us. We still love and support each other in whatever we do."

9 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Dec. 20-21, Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E. Burnside St.,, $15

Oregon Symphony

The Symphony has two big shows coming up. Check for availability for tickets for “Natalie Cole Christmas” (7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21); it’s a popular return engagement after her sold-out 2012 Valentine’s Day performance. Tickets start at $35; go to for ticket information for the event at Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 S.W. Broadway. The other upcoming event: “Comfort and Joy: A Classical Christmas,” featuring the symphony and resident conductor Paul Ghun Kim, tenor Dominic Armstrong and concertmaster Sarah Kwak. The details: 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall,, tickets starting at $10 (priced well for families).

Straight No Chaser

The famed a capella group, formed in 1996 at Indiana University, has attracted 25 million YouTube views. Their holiday releases, “Holiday Spirit” and “Christmas Cheers,” have been hits, and their most recent album, “Under The Influence,” includes collaborations with Sara Bareilles, Dolly Parton, Rob Thomas, Seal and Jason Mraz, as well as Phil Collins, Stevie Wonder and Elton John.

8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 27, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 S.W. Broadway,, $38-$64.50


Wanderlust Circus

Wanderlust Circus and gypsy chamber ensemble 3 Leg Torso combine for a rollicking musical, where the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by three spirits who give him a time-traveling crash course in the true meaning of Christmas.

8 p.m. Friday-Sunday, Dec. 20-22, Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 N.E. Alberta St.,, $20, $25 at door

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