Breakfast with Santa Menlo Park Community Services hosts "Breakfast with Santa." Include pancake breakfast, letter writing to Santa, holiday crafts, and picture-taking with Santa. Reservations required. $1 off with unwrapped toy. Dec. 7, 7:30-11:30 p.m. $5-7. Arrillaga Family Recreation Center, 700 Alma St., Menlo Park. Call 650-330-2220. www.menlopark.org/departments/com/BWS2013.pdf
Holiday Book Sale Friends of the Menlo Park Library hosts holiday sale. Dec. 8, noon-4 p.m. Free. Menlo Park Library, 800 Alma St., Menlo Park. Call 650-325-3001. www.friendsmpl.org
Artist Open Studio Five artists (Jan Schachter, Peggy Forman, Nina Else, Margaret Realica and Lois Anderson) host a holiday open studio. Works include ceramics and handmade books. Dec. 7-8, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Free. Jan Schachter's studio, 190 Golden Hills Drive, Portola Valley. Call 650-851-3754. www.janschachter.com
Until There's A Cure, which raises funds to fight HIV/AIDs, hosts annual Holiday Open House, with new products, raffle, food, refreshments. Dec. 8, Noon-5 p.m. Free. Until There's A Cure, 560 Mountain Home Road, Woodside. Call 650-332-3200. www.until.org
Bethany Lutheran Church hosts Gingerbread House Decorating Fundraiser. Houses pre-assembled; candy, sweets, and tools needed are provided. Make reservation. Dec. 7, 9 a.m.-noon. $50 per house. Bethany Lutheran Church , 1095 Cloud Ave., Menlo Park. Call 650-854-5897.
Lifetree Cafe Menlo Park hosts conversation exploring storytelling and listening. Dec. 4, 7-8 p.m. Free. Bethany Lutheran Church, 1095 Cloud Ave., Menlo Park. Call 650-854-5897. www.facebook.com/LifetreeCafeMP
After-Thanksgiving Shopping Portola Art Gallery hosts alternative to "Black Friday" shopping. Nov. 29-30, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. Portola Art Gallery, 75 Arbor Road, Menlo Park. Call 650-321-0220. www.portolaartgallery.com
Portola Art Gallery December group show, "Small Works ... Great Values." Artists showcase original works that are small in size but "large on value and creativity." Dec. 2-31, every day except Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. Portola Art Gallery, 75 Arbor Road, Menlo Park. Call 650-321-0220. www.portolaartgallery.com
'Illuminate This Night' Concerts In three concerts, the Peninsula Women's Chorus sings holiday music from around the world. Tickets at www.pwchorus.org. Concerts: Dec. 7 and 14 at 2:30 p.m. at St. Mark's Episcopal Church, 600 Colorado Ave., Palo Alto; and Dec. 15 at 4 p.m. at St. Patrick's Seminary, 320 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park. $35 premium; $30 general; $10 student (18 and under). www.pwchorus.org
'A Festival of Lessons and Carols' Memorial Church Choir presents annual seasonal program, based on the service at King's College in Cambridge. Dec. 6, 7:30-9 p.m. Free. Stanford Memorial Church, 450 Serra Mall, Stanford. Call 650-723-1762. www.events.stanford.edu/events/389/38939
Kids & Families
'One Wacky Winter' Holiday puppet performance by the Puppet Company is a mystery: Who is kidnapping toys at the Master Toymaker's workshop"? Sponsor: Friends of Atherton Library. Dec. 9, 4-5 p.m. Free Atherton Library, 2 Dinkelspiel Station Lane, Atherton. Call 650-328-2422. www.smcl.org
Holiday Party at Allied Arts features entertainment for children, 4-9, accompanied by adult. Max the Accordion Man plays holiday music, Magical Moonshine Theater gives puppet show, visit from Santa, a magic show, cookies and juice. Dec. 8, 12:30-3 p.m. $25 per person. Allied Arts Guild, 75 Arbor Road, Menlo Park.
Mister G's ABC Fiesta Hear songs from Mister G's new bilingual album, which combines music and books. Funded by Friends of Portola Valley Library. Dec. 5, 4-5 p.m. Free. Portola Valley Library, 765 Portola Road, Portola Valley. Call 650-851-0560. www.smcl.org
Portola Valley Library Lego Club Ages 0-9 welcome to play and build with Legos provided by library. Register by contacting library. Dec. 7, 11 a.m.-noon. Free. Portola Valley Library, 765 Portola Road, Portola Valley. Call 650-851-0560. www.smcl.org
Story Time Rosemary Wells, author of the Max and Ruby children's series, will read at story time at Kepler's Books. Dec. 8, 10:30 a.m. Free. Kepler's Books, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321. www.keplers.com/event/max-ruby-story-time-rosemary-wells
West Bay Opera holiday concert and audience sing-along will feature mezzo-soprano Catherine Cook, with orchestra and chorus. Silent auction; proceeds benefit West Bay Opera and Opera in the Schools. Dec. 8, 4-6 p.m. $45-50 Menlo-Atherton Performing Arts Center, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton. Call 650-424-9999. www.wbopera.org
'November': Play by David Mamet Dragon Theatre Productions performs comedic commentary on the state of the union and national politics. Nov. 21-Dec. 15. No performances Nov. 28. Thursdays-Saturdays: 8 p.m.; Sunday: 2 p.m. $10-35. Dragon Theatre, 2120 Broadway St., Redwood City. Call 650-493-2006 ext. 2. www.dragonproductions.net/activities/2013season/november.html
Ballet America "The Nutcracker," a kid-friendly, full-length production with cast of approximately 100 dancers, all from the Bay Area. Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. $18-39. Fox Theater, 2215 Broadway St., Redwood City. Call 650-366-1222. www.americanballet.com/nutcracker/
Authors & Talks
'Art of French Pastry' Jacquy Pfeiffer, pastry chef and co-founder of the French Pastry School in Chicago, will discuss his new book, "The Art of French Pastry." Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m. Free. Kepler's Books, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321. www.keplers.com/event/jacquy-pfeiffer
John P. Holdren, director of White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, talks with moderator John Markoff of New York Times. Dec. 11, 7-8:30 p.m. Free; register at computerhistory.org/events. Computer History Museum, 1401 N. Shoreline Blvd., Mountain View.
MIY (Make It Yourself) Gifts Class Participants refashion T-shirts, old inner tubes and other materials into wearable accessories. Contact library to register. For children 9+ years, teens and adults. Sponsored by Friends of the Portola Valley Library. Dec. 4, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Free. Portola Valley Library, 765 Portola Road, Portola Valley. Call 650-851-0560. www.smcl.org
Hidden Villa hosts its first Holiday Online Auction. Bidding begins Nov. 25 and closes Dec. 10. All proceeds support Hidden Villa's educational programs and scholarships. See URL below to start bidding. Cost of auction items. Hidden Villa Holiday Auction. www.biddingforgood.com/auction/AuctionHome.action?vhost=hiddenvilla
Bethany Lutheran Church collects donations to help feed the local hungry. Money raised will be used to support a Thanksgiving dinner for homeless people and Christmas food baskets for East Palo Alto families. Bring monetary donations to the church office by Dec. 15. Bethany Lutheran Church , 1095 Cloud Ave., Menlo Park. www.bethany-mp.org/pages/page.asp?page_id=290935
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