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CALENDAR 9-day: Schooool's out, holiday music, movie day, gift ideas and more

Friday, December 22

SCHOOOOL’S OUT…FOR…WINTER! That’s right folks, kids across the city are officially underfoot, as Claremont schools shut down for winter break at the completion of today’s classes. Schools will reopen next year, on Monday, January 8, 2018. If you’re looking for family-friendly activities this week, read on…

GET WRAPPED FOR A CAUSE Claremont-based charity the Children’s Foundation of America is wrapping gifts for a cause at Montclair Plaza this holiday season. For a small donation, volunteers from the Children’s Foundation will wrap gifts with festive paper, bows, ribbons and tags. The gift-wrapping station, which is open during regular mall hours, is located between Sears and Barnes and Noble, right next to Cinnabon. The Children’s Foundation of America is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting children in need. All proceeds collected during the gift-wrapping fundraiser will benefit displaced children in foster care, shelters and more. For information go to childrensfoundationofamerica.org.

Saturday, December 23

HOLIDAY MUSIC IN THE VILLAGE Claremont’s annual tradition of live holiday music continues with Village Jazz from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Chamber of Commerce. Yuletide Blend performs at Laemmle Plaza from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., followed by Cougar Estrada’s Lounge Trio from 2:30 to 5. Performers from Inland Valley Repertory Theater will be strolling throughout the Village.

Sunday, December 24

LAST-MINUTE GIFT IDEAS One of Claremont’s loveliest Sunday traditions, the Farmers and Artisans Market, takes place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. along Second Street in the Village. If you’re looking for a last minute gift—the market features growers and makers of items like cheese, produce, juices, nuts and honey, as well as jewelry, clothing, candles, books and other unique, handmade items—you just might give the market a try.

Monday, December 25

MERRY CHRISTMAS! All local government offices and most businesses are closed for the Christmas holiday. If you need anything, try 7-Eleven! (You’ll have to go to Upland, of course.)

HOLY DAY/MOVIE DAY Of the few businesses open today, local movie houses will likely be among the busiest. Box offices traditionally boom on Christmas day, and studios have long looked at holiday season release dates for some of their most profitable franchises. The highest grossing holiday movie of all time, 1990’s Home Alone, has made nearly $500 million to date, with the numbers adjusted for inflation. This year, the big holiday film appears to be Bad Mom’s Christmas. The sequel to 2016’s Bad Moms, the reboot is a raunchy, R-rated romp starring the same three drunken, foul-mouthed moms, this time augmented by their mothers and their comical neuroses. Families collide, and hilarity ensues. It’s definitely not for the under 12 in the family though, unless you want to do a lot of explaining. If naughty is unappealing, you can always opt for the latest installment in the Star Wars juggernaut, The Last Jedi. At press time it had taken in $8 trillion at the box office, so I guess it’s the law: you have to go see it. For all the listings and show times for Claremont’s Laemmle Theater, go to laemmle.com/theaters/17 or call (310) 478-3836.

Tuesday, December 26

OPENING DAY Nearby beautiful and historic Santa Anita Park, at 285 W. Huntington Dr., Arcadia, opens its 110th racing season today, with first post at noon, followed by 10 races, free giveaways, a craft beer and cider festival happening throughout the day, and other specials. Friends of mine have made this a post-Christmas tradition for 30 years. It’s an event that can work for families and partiers alike. The gorgeous views of and from the 1907 structure are a bonus. If you’d rather not drive, park at the Gold Line station at Citrus College in Azusa, and take the quick and clean light rail to Arcadia for $3.50, round trip. You’re welcome. More race info is at santaanita.com or (626) 574-7223. Gold Line info is at metro.net.

SOLID RAY’S RAW SOUL REVUE Tonight one of our most talented local musicians, Solid Ray Woods, brings his Raw Soul Revue to his former home base, Pappy and Harriet’s. The free show gets underway at 7 p.m. Pappy and Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace is located at 53688 Pioneertown Rd. Dinner reservations are highly recommended. Try the ribs. If you’re not a carnivore, the macaroni and cheese is the best in the world. To make reservations or get more info, go to pappyandharriets.com or call (760) 365-5956.

SENIOR COMPUTER CLUB Claremont Senior Computer Club meets every Tuesday, with social time at 7 p.m. and the meeting at 7:30 p.m., at the Hughes Community Center, 1700 Danbury Rd. The long-running group meets weekly to discuss computers, tablets and smart phones. Each meeting provides an opportunity for questions to the group’s club experts, and newcomers are always welcome. More information is at cscclub.org.

Wednesday, December 27

EPIC FAILS Feeling bad about your holiday performance? Maybe you forgot to turn on  the oven, and your turkey never cooked. Or, perhaps all that planning fell flat, and the kids thought your season passes to Mini-Golf Land were more “meh” than “lit”? If your confidence needs a boost, try a trip to the Museum of Failure. “An experiential journey of failures-past!” a press release read. “Come fail with us!” Yes, the show, open through February 4, is dedicated to disappointment. All the sadness happens at A+D Architecture and Design Museum, 900 E. 4th St., Los Angeles. The exhibit is open today from 2 to 6 p.m., Thursday and Friday from 2 to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from noon to 7 p.m., and is closed Monday and Tuesday. It promises “a shrine of history’s epic fails by some of the world’s best known companies.” First displayed in Sweden, the collection of 100 plus failures was originally conceived by psychologist and innovation researcher, Dr. Samuel West, as part of his research on corporate success and innovation. “The marketing catastrophe that was Bic for Her? Yup. The two-wheeled, self-balancing transport innovation, Segway? You better believe it. These, along with artifacts spanning from the 17th century right up to the present day, including the frozen beef lasagna by Colgate, demonstrate the types of failures the museum will showcase. Other highlights include the hula chair (just envision it), the Apple Newton, and even President Donald Trump’s version of Monopoly from 1989.” It’s the feel-bad hit of the winter! More info is at failuremuseum.com.

Thursday, December 28

ICE SKATING If you’re a parent lucky enough to be off work this week, your kids are likely getting a bit whiny by now. Try this: get them out of their comfort zones, off the screens and into some bracing cold. It’ll cheer you up! Here’s today’s tip: LA’s 20th annual Bai Holiday Ice Rink at Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive St., in Downtown LA. The rink is open from 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. General admission is $9, and skate rental is $4. Figure and hockey skate sizes range from toddler size 8 to adult size 15. You may also bring your own ice skates. For skaters not up for braving the freeways, the Metro Red or Purple Lines both run to the Pershing Square Station, and riders receive a $1 discount on skating lessons. Ice-skating is always a hit, unless your kids are like mine and they fall a lot, in which case they’ll have a story to tell for years to come! Either way, you’re golden. The beloved recreational landmark is open through January 15. For information, go to holidayicerinkdowntownla.com or call (213) 624-4289.

Friday, December 29

THE MOUNT BECKONS Have some time off this week? Enjoying yourself with the kids underfoot, the tree drying up in the living room, and the fridge full of leftovers? If so, great. If not, and you’re a little stir crazy, or just need some fresh air, drive up the mountain, to nearby Mt. Baldy. The quaint, tiny mountain town, just a 20-minute ramble from Claremont, really is a world away. And, if the weather cooperates, there may even be snow. Also, the venerable Mt. Baldy Lodge is open at 11 a.m. for hot cocoa, a meal, and in the evening, live music from aptly named singer/guitarist Greg Guitarska. More info is at mtbaldylodge.com or (909) 982-1115.

Saturday, December 30

JURASSIC QUEST Still lookin’ for stuff to do with the kids? This recommendation is right in our backyard: The Pomona Fairplex, 1101 W. McKinley Ave., is the site of Jurassic Quest, a dinosaur adventure, open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. The exhibit features more than 80 ultra-realistic, life-sized, animatronic dinosaurs. Visitors can interact with and learn about the huge creatures, and even ride a few. The exhibit also features cute baby dinosaurs and lots of fun activities for kids of all ages. General admission is $20, and seniors, police, military and their families save $2 on each ticket. Children under 2 are free. For information and tickets go to jurassicquest.com or call (909) 623-3111.