Festivities for feeling festive

first_imgHere it comes. Ready?In addition to colored lights, wonderful lives and Christmases just like the ones you used to know, it’s also time to get ready for time and space travel, brain-swapping aliens and one scary-smart detective. Plus Gene Kelly dancing his way all over Paris.This weekend, you can pause your final dash for gift-wrapped glory to take in a final dollop of good cheer. Classic holiday films and new holiday adventures await at the Kiggins and Liberty movie theaters in Vancouver and Camas. After the holiday, there’s still time to indulge in nostalgia both in the cinema and up at Portland’s Pittock Mansion, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary of dressing for Christmas. Visitors can tour the display of 39 Christmas trees through Dec. 31 (except Christmas Day), so if you never want the holiday to end — or just want to get out of the house and maybe go look at something other than your relatives’ faces — this would be fun.Built in 1909, the 46-room Pittock Mansion was the home of Oregonian publisher Henry Pittock and his wife Georgiana; from its perch in the West Hills it commands a great view of Portland. It’s now city property, with daily tours available, and every Christmas season since 1966 it has been treated like Portland’s ultimate ornament. Take the seasonal tour and you’ll be dazzled by angels and ribbons, sleds and snowflakes, live music, Santa Claus himself and those 39 trees — all spread through 15 of the mansion’s most opulent rooms.A word to the wise: Parking can fill up at this popular attraction. If you take the free 12-seat shuttle from the Sunset Transit Center you’ll also get $1 off admission. The Sunset Transit Center is inside the cloverleaf where state highways 26 and 217 intersect; the address is 10470 S.W. Barnes Road, Portland. The shuttle leaves Sunset at every half-past-the-hour through 2:30 p.m., and leaves Pittock every hour through 5 p.m.Another mega-popular Portland happening that keeps the season alive after the holiday itself is the annual transformation of the Oregon Zoo into a 1.6-million-bulb landscape called “Zoo Lights.” This evening wonderland of lighted trees, animal silhouettes, a carousel and the beloved zoo train has packed in nearly a million visitors in the past five years. Your main challenge is timing. The week between Christmas and New Year is extra-busy, of course, and zoo insiders point out that the very busiest time is the 5-7 p.m. window. The zoo stays open and all the lights stay on until 9 p.m., so consider showing up on the late side to avoid the crunch.last_img

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