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Jacksonville December 2011 Event Calendar

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Things are definetely slowing down for the holidays as the attention of most First Coast residents shifts toward planning for family gatherings and Christmas shopping. There are, however, still a few notable events during December in Jacksonville. Many of them, outside of concerts, are free. While many are related to Christmas, some are not.

1. Night of Lights Celebration

Downtown St. Augustine -- the nation's oldest city -- will be sparkling with over one million lights for the 17th annual Night of Lights celebration. The Night of Lights is free to attend, and features period storytellers, trolleys, shopping, concerts and a Christmas parade. There are also a number of mini-events going on until December 20.

When: December 1, 2011 at 6 p.m.

Where: Downtown St. Augustine

2. Family Candy Cane Pulling

Sweet Pete's, a local candy-maker in the historic Springfield district, is hosting a family candy cane pulling shop the first week of December. Space is limited, and tickets are $15. Groups are welcome. Reservations are required. Call 904-376-7161.

When: First week of December, through Saturday

Where: Sweet Pete's in Springfield

3. Mushroomhead at Brewster's Pit

The Cleveland-based industrial metal band comes to Jacksovnille on Thursday, December 1. The show starts at 7 p.m.; tickets are $10 to $25.

When: December 1, 2011 at 7 p.m.

Where: Brewster's Pit

4. Christmas in Avondale

The historic neighborhood's Christmas celebration takes place in the Shoppes of Avondale, featuring horse and carriage rides, local artists, music and more. Starts at 6 p.m. and ends at 9 p.m. Admission is free.

When: December 2, 2011 at 6 p.m.

Where: Downtown St. Augustine

5. Riverside Arts Market

There only a few weeks of RAM festivals left. The popular Riverside Arts Market closes down for the winter. The weekly event features music, local vendors, artists and locally grown produce. It attracts 5,000 to 6,000 visitors weekly. RAM starts at 10 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m.

When: December 3, 2011

Where: Riverside Ave., beneath the Fuller-Warren bridge

6. Winter Celebration in Mandarin

This family friendly celebration in the Mandarin area of Jacksonville features fun for children and adults, including a hayride, Santa and Civil War re-enactments.

When: December 3, 2011 at 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Walter Jones Historical Park

7. The Big Ticket

One of Jacksonville's most popular music festivals kicks off at Metropolitan Park in Downtown Jacksonville on December 4. Tickets range from $30 to $60. Performers include Everlast, Sublime with Rome, Switchfoot, Young the Giant, Grouplove and Manchester Orchestra.

When: December 4, 2011

Where: Metropolitan Park

8. Jacksonville Jaguars Monday Night Football

The Jaguars may be out of playoff contention, but a chance to see the team play a rare Monday Night Football game, broadcast nationally on ESPN, should not be missed. Tickets start at $50, and plenty are available as the Jags take on Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers.

When: December 5, 2011 at 8:30 p.m.

Where: EverBank Field

9. WWE Smackdown

Wrestling fans can rejoice. WWE Smackdown is coming to Jacksonville on December 6. The show features “The Apex Predator” Randy Orton, Ted DiBiase and more. Tickets range from $15 to $60. The show starts at 7 p.m.

When: December 6, 2011 at 7 p.m.

Where: Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena

10. Trans-Siberian Orchestra

The holiday-rock-orchestral group, known for their hit "Wizards of Winter," are coming to Jacksonville on December 8. Tickets range from $29 to $59.

When: December 8, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.

Where: Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena

11. The Nutcracker

The classic two-act balet performance, with its well-known Tchaikovsky score, will take place at the Times-Union Center for Performing Arts on December 16. Tickets are $16 to $25.

When: December 16, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.

Where: Times-Union Center for Performing Arts (Moran Theatre)

12. Mystikal at Brewster's Pitt

The popular rapper, known best perhaps for his 1998 album "Ghetto Fabulous," is performing at Brewster's Pit on December 29, just a few days after Christmas. Tickets are $20.

When: December 29, 2011 at 8 p.m.

Where: Brewster's Pit

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