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COURTESY PHOTO: GLENN & VIOLA WALTERS CULTURAL ARTS CENTER - Bag&Baggage actors Cassie Greer, Mandana Khoshnevisan, and Lawrence Siulagi will each share magical tales from their own heritage and tradition.

HOLIDAY EVENTS

THE GROTTO — The Grotto's 31st Annual Christmas Festival of Lights opens Friday, Nov. 23. This Portland tradition runs nightly through Dec. 30 (except Christmas Day.) Guests stroll among 1.5 million colorful lights, which line the scenic pathways. New this year, a spectacular 150-foot living Christmas tree at the entrance at N.E. 85th and Sandy Blvd. The festival features 196 indoor holiday concerts performed by many of the region's finest school, church and civic choirs. Five concerts are scheduled each night and will perform in the 600-seat chapel, known for its cathedral-like acoustics. The festival also features a petting zoo, nightly puppet shows, and a chance to sing along with The Grotto Carolers. Holiday foods and beverages are also available, as is seasonal shopping in The Grotto Gift Shop. The Festival is open from 5 to 9:30 p.m., with the grounds closing at 10 p.m. Tickets are sold at the gate, $12 for general admission, $11 for seniors and military and $6 for children ages 3 to 12 years old. Free admission for children under 2. All proceeds support The Grotto, helping maintain its beautiful grounds throughout the year.

CHRISTMAS CONCERT — The Westside Community & Youth Orchestra (WCYO) presents their Winter 2018 Concert, "An Old-Fashioned Christmas" on Wednesday, Dec. 19 at 7:30 p.m. at Liberty High School Auditorium at 7445 N.E. Wagon Drive, Hillsboro.  Concert is free and open to the public (donations are always appreciated).

REMEMBERANCE SERVICE — Orenco Presbyterian Church in Hillsboro will hold a special "Service of Remembrance" at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9, in the sanctuary at 6420 N.E.Oelrich Road. Community members are invited to share the names of loved ones who have passed away in the past year or two by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Cookies and coffee will follow the service.

HANDEL'S MESSIAH — On Sunday, Dec. 9 at Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way, Forest Grove, is hosting an all-ages sing-a-long event of Handel's "Messiah" at 7 p.m. Pacific University students will perform, as well as organist Heidi Kohne from Portland. Music scores will be provided and a reception will follow.

THEATER

MAGIC, HERITAGE AND TRADITION — In collaboration with Bag&Baggage Productions, the Walters Cultural Arts Center (527 E. Main St., Hillsboro) presents a cozy winter evening of hot cider, cookies, and riveting stories told by professional actors on Tuesday, December 18 at 7 p.m. As part of the Walters' Creative Connections Speaker Series, Bag&Baggage actors Cassie Greer, Mandana Khoshnevisan, and Lawrence Siulagi will each share magical tales from their own heritage and traditions: Croatian, Persian, and Samoan, respectively. This live theatrical reading is a holiday favorite — guests are encouraged to arrive early for a seat. The event is free, open to the public and all ages.

BELL, BOOK AND CANDLE — Bag&Baggage Productions presents "Bell, Book & Candle" from Nov. 29 to Dec. 23, Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Usher in the holidays with a classic romantic comedy filled with magic, charm, and just a little touch of witchcraft. John Van Druten's 1950 play inspired the hugely popular film starring Kim Novak and Jimmy Stewart, and one of the most popular television shows in history, "Bewitched!" Gillian Holroyd, a witch living in Greenwich Village, has fallen in love with her neighbor — a serious problem for witches, who must give up their powers if they fall in love with a mere mortal! When Gillian finds out he is going to marry an old college rival, she casts a love spell on him, which (of course) backfires. Will Gillian give up her powers for a shot at happiness, or will she lose her last chance at love? Find out this holiday season in a production that takes full advantage of The Vault's magical technology. The Vault Theater, 350 E. Main St., Hillsboro. $30/35. Ages 13 and older.

RADIO CHRISTMAS —Broadway Rose Theatre Company presents the musical "A 1940s Radio Christmas Carol," Nov. 21 to Dec. 23. Thursday to Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. Step back in time to Christmas Eve, 1943, as the Feddington Players present "A Christmas Carol" live on-air. After an endless stream of interruptions, technical snafus and theatrical missteps threaten to tank the broadcast, the company improvises a film noir spin on the classic Dickens tale. Sprinkled with swing arrangements of Christmas standards and original songs in the period style, "A 1940s Radio Christmas Carol" is the festive comedy to sweeten your holiday season. Broadway Rose New Stage, 12850 S.W. Grant Ave., Tigard. $20-48. Visit broadwayrose.org or call 503-620-5262. Ages 6 and older.

EVERYBODY — Artists Repertory Theatre presents "Everybody," Nov. 25 to Dec. 30, with showtimes at 7 p.m. Death tells Everybody that their time is up. But Everybody doesn't want to greet Death alone, so Everybody seeks the company of their friends Stuff, Kinship, Friendship, Cousinship, and Love to make the trip bearable. From the scintillating mind that brought you "An Octoroon," "Everybody" is an audacious riff on the 15th-century morality play "Everyman." Nine brave actors will play a multitude of roles with their characters chosen by lottery on-stage every night — with a possible 120 combinations — as they fight to cheat Death. By Branden Jacobs-Jenkins and co-directed by Jessica Wallenfels and Dámaso Rodríguez. Alder Stage, 1515 S.W. Morrison St., Portland. Visit artistsrep.org or call 503-241-1278.

NUNCRACKERS — Theatre on the Grove presents "Nuncrackers," on 2028 Pacific Ave. Forest Grove. All the favorite nuns from Mount Saint Helen's, Father Virgil and four of their brightest students are attempting to shoot a cable access TV show from the basement of the convent – with hilarious results! A cooking segment, an interactive Secret Santa segment, and missing convent Christmas gifts are all a part of this riotous show! Performance dates are Dec. 7 to 23, at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday evenings and 2:30 p.m. on Sundays.

MUSIC

OPEN MIC — Influence Music Hall and Art Gallery hosts an open mic every Friday from 7 to 11 p.m. All ages and genres welcome. Free. Influence Music Hall, 135 S.E. Third Ave., Hillsboro. Visit influencemusichall.org. All ages until 9 p.m.

MANDOLIN — The Oregon Mandolin Orchestra is returning to Hillsboro on Friday, Dec. 7 at the Glenn & Viola Walters Cultural Arts Center on 527 E. Main St., Hillsboro for its ninth annual Holiday Concert, featuring seasonal favorites, an original piece by the orchestra's music director and a guest performance by the Brazilian-inspired Choro da Alegria at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 advance or $25 the day of the performance. More information about this performance and the 2018-19 Concert Series is available at  hillsboro-oregon.gov/WaltersConcerts or brownpapertickets.com, by calling 503-615-3485, or in person at 527 E. Main St., Hillsboro. 

SAEEDA WRIGHT — Glenn & Viola Walters Cultural Arts Center at 527 E. Main St., Hillsbor presents the stirring lyrics and elevating vocals of Saeeda Wright on Friday, Dec. 14, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 advance or $20 the day of the performance. Wright's electrifying passion and magnetic voice envelope audiences in music, story, and her powerful presence. Don't miss the opportunity for an intimate performance with a powerhouse on the rise. More information about this performance and the 2018-19 Concert Series is available at  hillsboro-oregon.gov/WaltersConcerts or brownpapertickets.com, by calling 503-615-3485, or in person at 527 E. Main St., Hillsboro. 

ART

ADULT CLASSES/WORKSHOPS —Brooke Walker-Knoblich hosts Painting Small at 12505 NW Cornell Road, Portland, Village Gallery on Thursdays, Dec. 6 and 13, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. This class focuses on alla prima techniques to complete a painting in a few hours. Hopefully each student will have two finished paintings that will make wonderful gifts for the holiday season. Oil and acrylic painters of all skill levels welcome.

LIBRARY EVENTS

Aloha Community Library, 17455 S.W. Farmington Road

TECH ASSISTANT — Need help with basic computer skills? Drop into the library for regular sessions with local tech assistants on Monday afternoons from 6 to 8 p.m., or call 503-259-0185 to reserve a longer appointment, up to one hour.

STORYTIME — Family story time takes place Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:30 to 11 a.m. This is a weekly storytime for toddlers and young children, and includes stories, songs, rhymes and activities geared towards getting kids interested in reading at an early age.

Cornelius Public Library,1355 N. Barlow St.

PRESCHOOL STORYTIME — Storytime for ages 3 to 6 takes place every Wednesday at 10:15 a.m. Younger siblings are welcome. Come to the library for fun with books, stories, songs and rhymes.

SPANISH STORYTIME — The library offers children's story times in Spanish on Saturdays from noon to 12:45 p.m. The public is invited to spend the hour listening to stories and singing songs with the whole family. The story time is sponsored by the Friends of the Cornelius Public Library.

Forest Grove City Library, 2114 Pacific Ave.

WRITERS IN THE GROVE — A free writing workshop is offered for young people and adults on the second Saturday of every month from 10 a.m. to noon. For writers with all levels of experience. For more information, call 503-992-3247.

Hillsboro Brookwood Library, 2850 N.E. Brookwood Parkway

READ TO THE DOGS — Read to the Dogs is a program aimed at young readers who want to develop their reading skills and improve their confidence by reading aloud to trained therapy dogs and their handlers. The private 20-minute sessions take place at the Hillsboro Brookwood Library in the Storytime Room, Thursday afternoons from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m. Registration is required, call 503-615-6500.

CHESS CLUB — Monthly chess club group for ages 9 to 12 meets on Friday afternoons at 4 p.m. with chess boards provided.

INTERNATIONAL STORYTIME — Japanese language storytime is on every second Saturday of the month at 10:30 a.m. Marathi/Hindi storytime is on every third Saturday of the month at 10:30 a.m. Arabic language storytime is on every third Sunday of the month at 2:30 p.m. Mandarin story time is on the fourth Saturday of the month at 10:30 a.m.

EVERYDAY ENGLISH — The library offers conversation groups for people of all language backgrounds who are learning English and want to practice and improve. The group meets Sundays at 3 p.m.

North Plains Public Library, 31334 N.W. Commercial St.

BOOKS BABIES STORYTIME — Each Wednesday, meet for stories, songs, rhymes and finger-plays with volunteer Lauren for babies up to 12 months. Come meet other families with little ones and introduce baby to early literacy activities. 10 a.m. For information, call 503-647-5051.


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