ATLRetro’s Swingin’ Holiday Guide – 2021

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

No clue what holiday shindigs to attend this year? We at ATLRetro are here to help with a list chock-full of merry tidings and Xmas tree rockin’ to help you have a super swell retro holiday season! Check out all the shakin’ shenanigans and classic fun we’ve dug up just for you!


ROCK AROUND THE XMAS TREE: Stomp on over to Napoleon’s for Michelle Malone & The Hot Toddies Holiday Show (Dec. 5), or catch Yacht Rock Schooner’s Ugly Sweater Holiday Show (Dec. 9)! Kool Kat Jeffrey Butzer continues one of Atlanta’s favorite retro holiday traditions with his Charlie Brown XMas at The Earl (Dec. 10, 11, 12)! Boogie down dino-style at Fernbank After Dark: Holiday Party (Dec. 10)! Dance the night away at Mary’s during their Naughty is Nice! Holiday Dance Party (Dec. 11)! Get hellaciously rocked during ELZIG’s Christmas Spectacular Variety Show at Little Tree Studio in Avondale (Dec. 18)! Eddie’s Attic brings you a rockin’ line-up this season with Ed Roland’s Annual Winter Wonder Bash with Collective Soul (Dec. 6/7); the Third Annual Burchfield Family Christmas (Dec. 9); Lauren Morrow’s Christmas Extravaganza (Dec. 10) and more! Get countrified at Strand Ole Opry’s Country Christmas (Dec. 16)! Have an Earl XMas with Brother Hawk and more (Dec. 25)! 

MERRY MORSELS, SPIRITS & MORE: Miracle on Monroe Holiday Pop-Ups unwraps its sixth season in the city returning to the Midtown Promenade restaurant Tapa Tapa and Bon Ton will once again get into Mele Kalikimaka spirit as it hosts Sippin’ Santa, a Christmas-themed tiki takeover. Both locations offer special holiday cocktails, a fun festive staff, and enough cheer for everyone through the month of December! Make your way to Napoleon’s for a festive Christmas brunch and enjoy a live performance of Vince Guaraldi’s A Charlie Brown Christmas (Dec. 12)!

FESTIVE FILMS: Spend the holidays at the Plaza Theatre and catch screenings of John Carpenter’s THE THING (1982) in 35mm (Dec. 11, 12 & 16); Jeremiah S. Chechik’s NATIONAL LAMPOON’S CHRISTMAS VACATION (1989) (starting Dec. 11); John McTiernan’s DIE HARD (1988) (starting Dec. 17) and Frank Capra’s classic, IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946) in 35mm (Dec. 18 & 19)! Or throw on your pajamas and head to Strand Marietta’s Christmas Eve marathon of IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946) (Dec. 24)! Regal Atlantic Station screens Joe Dante’s GREMLINS  (1984) (Dec. 4); Jon Favraeu’s ELF (2003) (Dec. 11); and NATIONAL LAMPOON’S CHRISTMAS VACATION (Dec. 18)! 

MAGIC ON STAGE: It’s the most wonderful time of year as Aurora Theatre presents their annual Christmas Canteen revue now through Dec. 23, and the kiddies will not want to miss their ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Puppet Show (Dec. 4)! Atlanta Ballet brings you their classic presentation of The Nutcracker at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center, through the month of December! The Center for Puppetry Arts brings back a classic family tradition, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer running through Jan. 2! Get down with the Grinch with Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical at the Fox Theatre (Dec. 7-12)! Boogie down to Strand Marietta for A Christmas Tradition (Dec. 10-23)! Scrooge it up and catch the Alliance Theatre’s presentation of A Christmas Carol through Dec. 24!

KRAMPUS SIGHTINGS  & SPOOKY FUN (in-person): Hey kiddies! Get beasty during Wreck the Halls: The Little 5 Points Krampus Krawl (Dec. 4)! Creep on over to Junkman’s Daughter in L5P for Family Portraits with Krampus, 1pm – 5pm (Dec. 5)! NETHERWORLD closes out its 25th year with two ho-ho-holiday horror events: A Lights on Tour returns Dec. 11, and A Haunted Holiday returns Dec. 18 featuring a performance of RISE OF THE NETHERSPAWN with a yuletide twist! 

VINTAGE & VIRTUAL: Catch the Trans-Siberian Orchestra – Christmas Eve & Other Stories online at 3pm (Dec. 5)! Hometown to Hollywood, LLC presents their online event, Scrooge Through the Years at 7pm (Dec. 9), or catch A Classic Hollywood Christmas online event at 7:30pm (Dec. 21)! Bizarre it up with Blackwell’s Xmas Oddities Auction online at 8pm (Dec. 10)! Catch a spooky online lecture, The Krampus & The Old, Dark Christmas at 3pm (Dec. 12)! Or catch A Charlie Brown Christmas Live On-Stage online at 6pm (Dec. 12)! Catch a sighting of Santa Live from The North Pole online at 11am (Dec. 19)! Get bewitched during the Cabot Kent Hermetic Temple’s online Yule Ritual at 4:30pm (Dec. 19)!

HO-HO-HOLIDAY SHOPPING: The Masquerade is gettin’ into the holiday spirit with BOGO concert tickets Dec. 3! Cryptid Creatives Collective presents their Winter Gift Marketplace in EAV featuring local vendors (including The Cryptid Cannery), artists and more (12pm – 6pm, Dec. 4)! Or make your way to Indie Craft Experience: Holiday Market (Dec. 4)! Head on over to Kirkwood for an Empire Arts Gallery Outdoor Holiday Pop-Up Market (Dec. 4)! Catch Bizarre Bazaar’s Holiday Market at the Imperial (Dec. 12), and don’t miss out on their Little Five Points Last Minute Holiday Extravaganza (Dec. 22)! Make your way to the Winter Solstice Market at the Park (Dec. 18)!

SANTA GETS CLASSY: Spend Christmas with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (Dec. 9 & Dec. 11), or get Baroque and experience Handel’s Messiah with the ASO (Dec. 17 & 18)! Catch the spirit of the holidays at the Fox Theatre during Sarah Brightman – A Christmas Symphony (Dec. 13)! Ansley Stewart and Friends gift you with A Very Vintage Christmas at Napoleon’s (Dec. 16)! StewartGet retro ‘n’ royal during Strand Marietta’s Christmas Royal Tea and Grand Yuletide Ball (Dec. 18-22)! Spend the holidays with Joe Gransden [Swing on by Callanwolde Fine Arts Center (Dec. 4); or croon on over to Cigar Cellar in Kennesaw for A Crooner Christmas with Joe & Josh Sirten (Dec. 6); you won’t want to miss The Joe Gransden Christmas Quintet at Napoleon’s (Dec. 12); or make your way to Eddie’s Attic for Joe’s Big Band Holiday Show with Robin Lattimore (Dec. 20 & 23)! 

TREE LIGHTINGS, SPARKLY LIGHTS & FESTIVITIES: The annual Vinings Jubilee Christmas Tree Lighting, Vinings’ oldest holiday tradition including 40s-style carolers singing all the classics (Dec. 2)! Callaway Gardens’s Fantasy in Lights runs the entire month of December! There are more than two million twinkling lights ablaze at Stone Mountain Christmas! The Lighting at Colony Square is making Midtown merry and bright (Dec. 4)! Get artsy and make your way to Hapeville for their #FreeArtHapeville Holiday Event (Dec. 4)! Avondale Estates gets down with Santa during their Winter Wonderland event (Dec. 4)!

TINSELED TUNES (Albums/Singles, etc.): The Aquadolls cover The Waitresses holiday classic “Xmas Wrapping” featuring Angelo Moore of Fishbone and El Jefe of NOFX! New Found Glory celebrates their favorite holiday songs in their new single, “Holiday Records” on their new album, DECEMBER’S HERE out Dec. 3! 

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