LATKE FRYING COMPETITION
The Great Latke Fry annual competition is held 6 p.m. Nov. 27 at Chabad of Southside, 11271 Alumni Way, Southside. The lighting of the Menorah, an olive oil press demonstration, refreshments, music, kids' activities and a latke tasting are featured. 646-4434, southsidechabad.com.
SS AMELIA GINGERBREAD PIRATE SHIP
The 17-foot-long, 12-foot-tall ship returns Nov. 27 at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, 4750 Amelia Island Parkway. The ship is on display through Dec. 28. 277-1100.
PETE'S THANKSGIVING DAY PARTY
Historic Pete’s Bar holds its annual street party 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Nov. 28 at 117 First St., Neptune Beach. No pets or bicycles. 249-9158.
CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING CEREMONY
The Jacksonville Landing holds its 27th annual event 7-10 p.m. Nov. 29 in the courtyard at 2 Independent Drive, Downtown. Synchronized Christmas tree light shows 6 p.m.-12:15 a.m. through Jan. 1. 353-1188.
CHRISTMAS MADE IN THE SOUTH
The 25th annual event offers original work by artists and craftsmen in several mediums 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 29, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 30 and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 1 at Prime Osborn Convention Center, 1000 Water St., Jacksonville; admission $6; free for kids younger than 12, 630-4000, 704-847-9480, madeinthesouthshows.com.
Omni’s Spa & Shops host the annual event, with carousel rides, train rides, live entertainment, cookies, cider and horse and carriage rides, stilt-walkers, photos with Santa Claus, and the lighting of a 34-foot Christmas tree, 5-8 p.m. Nov. 29 at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, 6800 First Coast Highway, 491-4646, omniameliaislandplantation.com.
VILLA ZORAYDA CANDLELIGHT TOURS
The fourth annual event features a courtyard Christmas tree, nativity scene and guided candlelit tours through the historic villa, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 29 at 83 King St., St. Augustine. Tours continue Nov. 30 and Dec. 5, 7, 10, 13, 17, 19, 21, 27, 28 and 30, tickets are $17; $8 for ages 7-12, 829-9887, villazorayda.com
HOLIDAY LIGHT PARADE
Hundreds of decorated boats light up the St. Johns River for Jacksonville’s 29th annual parade, 7 p.m. Nov. 30 along the downtown riverfront. Stevie Fingers and Sho Nuff perform 10 p.m.-1 a.m.; free, 353-1188, jacksonvillelanding.com.
FERNANDINA BEACH CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING CEREMONY
The official holiday event, with a photo-friendly Santa Claus, is held 2-6:30 p.m. Nov. 30 at the corner of Front Street and Centre Street, Fernandina Beach, ameliaisland.com.
RIVERSIDE ARTS MARKET
Small Business Saturday is featured, along with JesseCarole Montoya, Big Picture, New Moon Ramblers, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Nov. 30 at Riverside Arts Market, under the Fuller Warren Bridge at Riverside Avenue, Riverside. Local and regional art, gift-wrapping, live music and a farmers market are featured. 554-6865. riversideartsmarket.com
SANTA’S STORYBOOK TEA
Fireside reading, photo ops, sandwiches, pastries, candy and cakes are featured noon Nov. 30 and Dec. 7, 14 and 21, at Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, 4750 Amelia Island Parkway; $49 for adults, $10 for ages 5 and younger. 277-1100.
MISTER ROGERS SWEATER DRIVE
The 11th annual drive is on. Drop off clean, new and gently used sweaters, jackets, coats and blankets through Nov. 30 at WJCT Studios, 100 Festival Park Ave., Jacksonville; Two Men & A Truck, 8849 Arlington Expressway, and First Coast VyStar Credit Union locations. Donations go to St. Vincent’s Mobile Outreach Ministry, Clara White Mission, I.M. Sulzbacher Center for the Homeless and area nonprofits. 358-6322, wjct.org.
COSMIC CONCERTS LASER SHOWS
Laser Holiday 7 p.m., Laser Spirit 8 p.m., Jimmy Buffett 9 p.m., and Laser Country 10 p.m. Nov. 29; online tickets $5, Bryan Gooding Planetarium, Museum of Science & History, 1025 Museum Circle, Southbank, 396-7062, moshplanetarium.org.
A DECEMBER TO REMEMBER
A family-friendly event featuring Santa’s arrival starts at 2 p.m. Dec. 1 at St. Augustine Amphitheatre, 1340C A1A S., St. Augustine. Train rides, a Blizzard Bounce House, Elf Village, a holiday tree, music and hourly snowfall are in the plaza. Non-perishable food items are collected to distribute to those in need in St. Johns County. Swing band Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s “Wild and Swingin’ Holiday Party,” 6 p.m., free, 471-1965, staugamp.sjcvenues.com.
The Jewish Community Alliance celebrates with games, crafts, entertainment and the Chanukiyah lighting, 5:45 p.m. Dec. 2 at 8505 San Jose Blvd., Mandarin, 730-2100, jcajax.org.
DANIEL KIDS FUNDRAISER
Sterling Joyce hosts this Gatsby-themed fundraiser 6-10 p.m. Dec. 4 at Zeta, 131 First Ave. N., Jax Beach, 372-0727; admission is an unwrapped toy (for ages 4-14, $10 value), sterlingjoycecharityfundraising.com.
FESTIVAL OF TREES
St. Johns County Convention Center and Renaissance World Golf Village Resort present the ninth annual festival, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. through Dec. 8 and 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Dec. 9 at 500 Legacy Trail, St. Augustine. Donated trees and wreaths are decorated by local businesses, organizations and individuals. Proceeds from a raffle benefit the St. Augustine Record’s Empty Stocking Fund and United Way of St. Johns County. 940-4015, worldgolfhalloffame.org.
NIGHTS OF LIGHTS
St. Augustine’s historic district presents its 19th annual holiday event 6:30 p.m. at Plaza de la Constitución, downtown historic district. The thousands of lights shine nightly through Jan. 31, 825-1004.
CLAY COUNTY FOOD DRIVE
J.A. Long Design Builders accepts nonperishable food items, cash, checks or grocery gift card donations for the Food Pantry through Dec. 20. To make a food or monetary donation, stop by 1677 Wells Road, Ste. D, Orange Park, 264-3073 or email email@example.com. For details about Food Pantry of Green Cove Springs, call 284-0814.
RIVER CITY HAUNTS
A ghostly walking tour, 8 p.m. every Fri. through Dec. 20, starting at Jacksonville Landing escalators. For reservations, call 827-1845; $15 for adults; $5 for kids 5-12; adlibtours.com.
AMELIA FARMERS MARKET
Fernandina Beach farmers market offers local produce, gourmet-prepared foods and landscape plants, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. every Sat. at the Shops of Omni Amelia Island Plantation, Amelia Island, 491-4872, ameliafarmersmarket.com.
ST. JOHNS RIVER FARMERS MARKET
Local produce, arts and crafts are offered 10 a.m.-2 p.m. every Sat. at Alpine Groves Park, 2060 S.R. 13, Switzerland. 347-8900.
FARMERS MARKET OF SAN MARCO
Fresh local and regional produce is offered 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m. every Sat. at 1620 Naldo Ave., Swaim Memorial United Methodist Church parking lot, San Marco. Family fun day is the third Sat. 607-9935.
ANCIENT OAKS ARTS & FARMERS MARKET
An open-air farmers market, noon-4 p.m. every other Sun. at Mandarin Community Club, 12447 Mandarin Road. 607-9935.
BOOKS & LIBRARIES
Local author and photojournalist FitzRoy signs copies of her new book, "Ponte Vedra Beach," featuring photos of days past at Mineral Beach, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dec. 2 at Costco, 4901 Gate Parkway, Southside, 997-7003, facebook.com/maggie.fitzroy.
Fleming Island Friends of the Library present Navy Band Southeast's Holiday Brass concert, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Dec. 2 at Clay County Headquarters Library, 1895 Town Center Blvd., Fleming Island, 278-3722, ccpl.lib.fl.us.
Local poet Price signs copies of his book, "The Wild Woods Edge," 5-8 p.m. Dec. 4 at Chamblin's Uptown, 215 N. Laura St., Downtown, 674-0868, chamblinbookmine.com.
FOOD FOR FINES
St. Johns County Public Libraries offer the resolution of overdue fines and help those in need with this program, accepting non-perishable food items in lieu of overdue fines through Dec. 21. Donations distributed locally to St. Johns County Food Closet. Up to $1 in overdue fines are resolved for each sealed, non-expired, non-perishable item donated. Donation waivers are for library fines only and aren't applied to fees for printing, lost items, or credit against future fines. No fine? Drop off canned foods at any library branch or bookmobile stop. 827-6925, sjcpls.org.
Huff appears 8:34 p.m. Nov. 29 and 8:04 and 10:10 p.m. Nov. 30 at The Comedy Club of Jacksonville, 11000 Beach Blvd., Ste. 8, Southside, $6-$25; 646-4277, jacksonvillecomedy.com.
The local treasure appears 8 p.m. Nov. 29, and 7 and 9 p.m. Nov. 30 at The Comedy Zone, Ramada Inn, 3130 Hartley Rd., Mandarin; $15 and $18; 292-4242, comedyzone.com.
Comic Anthony is on 8 p.m. Nov. 29-30 at Latitude 30, 10370 Philips Highway, Southside, $10, 365-5555, latthirty.com.
JUNIE B. JONES – JINGLE BELLS, BATMAN SMELLS
The kids’ comedy is staged 10:15 a.m. Dec. 3 at Thrasher-Horne Center for the Arts, 283 College Drive, Orange Park, $8, 276-6815, thcenter.org.
NATURE, SPORTS & OUTDOORS
SHARK TEETH DISCUSSION
A park ranger discusses sharks' teeth 2 p.m. Nov. 30 at Ribault Club, Fort George Island Cultural State Park, 11241 Ft. George Road, free, 251-2320, floridastateparks.org.
JAGUARS VS. TEXANS
The Jacksonville Jaguars play against the Houston Texans, 8:25 p.m. Dec. 5 at EverBank Field, 1 EverBank Place, Downtown. Single-game tickets for home games start at $45, 633-2000, jaguars.com.
RIVER TO SEA PRESERVE GUIDED TRAIL WALK
The walk, led by GTM Research Reserve volunteers through wooded hammock between the ocean and Matanzas River, is held 9-10:30 a.m. Dec. 4 at Marineland's south end; reservations required; 823-4500, gtmnerrmarinelandtrail.eventbrite.com.
POLITICS, ACTIVISM & BUSINESS
CREATIVE BUSINESS PLANNING
“Business Planning for Creatives: Artists, Writers, Healers, Coaches & Independent Practitioners” is offered 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Dec. 6 in Atlantic Beach; email firstname.lastname@example.org, 800-913-8611 ext. 1.
CLASSES & GROUPS
The Jacksonville Genealogy Society offers an intermediate genealogy class 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Dec. 7, 14 and 21 at Bartram Trail Branch Library, 60 Davis Pond Blvd., Fruit Cove, free, but registration required – email your name, address and phone number to email@example.com.
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY
The group needs volunteers for its programs in St. Johns County, 7:45 a.m.-3 p.m. Wed.-Sat., building or improving area homes. To register and get details, go to habitatstjohns.org.
Research your family history 1-2:30 p.m. every Wed. at River House, 179 Marine St., St. Augustine; $3 for River House activity members; $4 for nonmembers, 209-3643 or 209-3646.
MARINE VETERANS GROUP
The Oldest City Detachment 383 gathers 7 p.m. on first Tue. of the month at Elks Lodge 829, 1420 A1A S., St. Augustine. 461-0139. mclfl383.org
MEMORY ENHANCEMENT PROGRAM
Learn simple strategies that focus on cognitive stimulation, education and socialization. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. every Tue. and Thur. at Christ Episcopal Church, 400 San Juan Drive, Ponte Vedra Beach. 729-9535.
VIETNAM VETERANS OF AMERICA
The Duval County Chapter No. 1046 gathers 7 p.m. the first Wed. of every month at the Elks Lodge, 1855 West Road, Southside. 419-8821.
KATHLEEN MADIGAN Dec. 13, Ponte Vedra Concert Hall
JEFF DUNHAM Jan. 24, Veterans Memorial Arena
LILY TOMLIN Feb. 6, Florida Theatre
HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS Feb. 28, Veterans Memorial Arena