.5 Things To Do in Santa Cruz: Dec. 11-17

A weekly guide to what’s happening

Green Fix

Gary Griggs Book Signing 

A Santa Cruz favorite, geologist, scientist, ocean lover, award winner, Sentinel columnist, house renovator, people person, Earth mascot, professor, and all-around everything-er, Gary Griggs knows what’s going on in our ocean backyard. Griggs’ new book Our Ocean Backyard: Collected Essays, Volume 2 is a compilation of 106 previously published articles from his popular column for the Santa Cruz Sentinel. Written for anyone with an interest in the oceans, the essays draw upon our rich history of ocean exploration and discovery, shedding light on our past history and what we can expect in the years and decades to come.

INFO: 6pm. Wednesday, Dec. 18. Seymour Marine Discovery Center, 100 McAllister Way, Santa Cruz. 459-3800, seymourcenter.ucsc.edu. Free. 


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Art Seen

‘The Nutcracker’

There’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit than to overload on the “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.” Santa Cruz City Ballet Artistic Director, choreographer and Juilliard Alumnae Shannon Chipman began the Nutcracker tradition in Santa Cruz as the first Snow Queen at Cabrillo’s theater in 1988, and it’s still going strong today. The Nut is celebrating its 10th year at Cabrillo this season with a full-length performance by the Santa Cruz City Ballet at International Academy of Dance. There will be local talent and principal dancers from the Oregon Ballet Theater, as well as guest dancers from the Bay Area and Krazy George (Sunday only), inventor of the Wave as Mother Ginger. 

INFO: 1 and 4:30pm. Saturday, Dec. 14, and Sunday, Dec. 15. Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. cabrillovapa.com. $28-40. 


Saturday 12/14 

‘Wowie-Zowie with Jeff Raz’

As part of this year’s ArtSmart Family Concert Series, Tandy Beal & Company is hosting Joy! favorite Jeff Raz. During this magical hour, experience the hilarity, wonder and dazzlement of physical theater and musical juggling with one of the preeminent circus performers of the West Coast. Raz has made a juggling act out of life: he toured as a soloist in Cirque du Soleil and spent nine years with the legendary Pickle Family Circus. An expert at clowning around, Raz will bring volunteers to perform feats of balance, to make people gasp in awe and delight, and to uplift our hearts and spirits! 

INFO: 11am. Saturday, Dec. 14. Veterans Memorial Building, 846 Front St., Santa Cruz. tandybeal.com. $15 adults/$10 children.


Saturday 12/14 

‘Ayurvedic Cooking During the Holidays’

Fall and winter are full of family gatherings, holidays and food galore. While this is a time to celebrate, it can also lead to digestive issues for many people. In this workshop, experts will go over how to combine Ayurvedic cooking with favorite holiday foods. The class will go over ways to digest and assimilate holiday foods better, how to eat in a balanced way, and ways to feel satiated longer. Lunch is included in the ticket price. 

INFO: 10am. New Leaf Community Markets, 1101 Fair Ave., Santa Cruz. newleaf.com. $47. 


Friday 12/14 

Harmony for the Homeless 

When it comes to homelessness in our community, many people want to help but don’t know exactly how to. Join the 418 Project in an opportunity to take action in a way that builds solidarity and raises a voice around the challenges that impact the Santa Cruz community. Local artists are initiating a conversation around homelessness to inspire people through song and poetry, to search for creative solutions rather than turning cheeks or feeling overwhelmed and powerless. Proceeds will go to support Downtown Streets Team, a nonprofit providing homeless and low-income folks with the resources they need to rebuild their lives. Please also bring non-perishable food donations if you can, which will be donated to Second Harvest Food Bank.

INFO: 7pm. The 418 Project. 418 Front St., Santa Cruz. 466-9770, the418project.org. $25. 


Sunday 12/15 

Diversity Center Community Holiday Party 

When the going gets tough, the tough get together. Celebrate the beginning of the winter holidays with the Diversity Center’s annual holiday party. Bring nutritious canned or boxed food donations for the annual Santa Cruz Aids Project holiday drive. Raffle tickets will be offered for chances to win all kinds of local wellness, adventure and dining prizes. Celebrate the end of one year with friends in the local community.

INFO: 4pm. 126 Pacheco Ave., Santa Cruz. 425-5422, diversitycenter.org. $10-100. 


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