- 16th annual Gingerbread City contest with chefs basing creations on themes from holiday storybooks, 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 1 at Grand Del Mar Resort, 5300 Grand Del Mar Court, benefit for Epilepsy Foundation. (619) 296-0161.
- Letter writing to Santa at Macy's stores through Dec. 24. For each postcard received, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1 million.
- "The Elf on the Shelf" co-authors (mother/daughter) Carol Aebersold and Chanda Bell visit from 2 to 4 p.m. at Geppetto's, Flower Hill Promenade, 2670 Via de la Valle. (858) 350-9038.
- Leonard Bernstein's "Mass," presented by La Jolla Symphony & Chorus, 8 p.m. Dec. 4-6 and 3 p.m. Dec. 6, Mandeville Auditorium, UCSD campus. Tickets $18-$36. (858) 534-4637, www.lajollasymphony.com.
- "Ode to Joy," from the San Diego Symphony (and Beethoven), 8 p.m. Dec.
4-5 and 2 p.m. Dec. 6.
Copley Hall, 750 B St. (619) 235-0804, www.sandiego
- Santa arrival, Dec. 5 at Del Mar Plaza. Del Mar Art Gallery will have kids' Santa Drawing from 1 to 3 p.m., and each child will take home what they paint and draw with Santa's signature. email@example.com.
- Torrey Pines High School Holiday Boutique, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 5, free parking. More than 30 vendors selling jeans, purses, clothing, holiday gifts and more. Benefits the College and Career Center and other student programs. (858) 755-0125, ext. 2024.
- Holiday Wonderland in the Village of Del Mar, from 1 to 5 p.m. Dec. 6, includes activities for every age. Pre-event tickets cover four to 10 food items and/or activities. Twenty-five tickets for $20 (day of event $25). Music, arts and crafts, restaurant sampling, barbecue, Bully's fun zone, horse and carriage rides, Santa photos, school choirs, carolers, dance teams, Snow Queen visits and puppet show at the library. Snow! the real white powdery stuff, will be "imported" at St. Peter's Episcopal Church, 2 to 4 p.m., with complimentary hot cocoa and goodies, 334 14th St., across from the Del Mar Plaza.
- Advent Evensong with the choir of St. Peter's Episcopal Church and the young singers of the St. Nicholas Choristers under the direction of Ruben Valenzuela, 5 p.m. Dec. 6. Festive sherry reception follows in the parish hall. (858) 755-1616.
- "A Night in Bethlehem," 4 to 6 p.m. Dec. 6 at Calvary Lutheran Church, 424 Via de la Valle, north of the fairgrounds, Solana Beach. The courtyard will be set up to resemble a marketplace in biblical times. Booths will feature food, arts, crafts and other goods of the era. Church members will portray Mary, Joseph, shepherds and Roman soldiers. Strolling musicians will entertain. Tickets: $15 ($45 per family), include a light meal. R.S.V.P. by Dec. 2. (858) 755-2855. www.CalvaryLutheran
- Jewels and Jammies holiday shopping extravaganza benefits Foundation for Animal Care and Education (FACE), 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club, 17025 Avenida de Acacias. Raffle and silent auction, and more. R.S.V.P. by Dec. 4 for an invitation. (858) 450-3223, firstname.lastname@example.org. www.face4pats.org.
- Westwind Brass holiday concert, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 7, Neurosciences Institute, 10640 John Jay Hopkins Drive, La Jolla. Christmas carols, Hanukkah music and selections from Klezmer's Nutcracker Suite, Händel's Messiah, as well as a few surprises. Tickets: $15-$25. (619) 501-3562, www.west