Note: list is in alphabetical order.
CONTINENTAL CLUB Beatles tribute band Beetle gets the Continental's Christmas night started at 7 p.m., followed at 10 by promising local Americana act Grand Old Grizzly, who in turn will share the stage with the bluegrass stylings of the Palisades. On their Web site, the Grizzly men also promise that some special surprise guests will appear, so make plans to head on down to Main Street to satisfy your curiosity.
3700 Main, Web site
FIREHOUSE SALOON Put on your cowboy hat and boots (or not) and head on over to Firehouse Saloon for Rich O'Toole's "Christmas Down In Texas" show. The Houston country-rocker, who released his fifth studio album, Jaded, this year, has had an impressive 14 Top 10 hits on Texas radio. Firehouse Saloon, a honky-tonk owned and operated by a former firefighter, is a good spot to take some visiting out-of-town relatives or friends and hit the dance floor for some two-stepping. O'Toole hits the stage at 9 p.m.
5930 Southwest Fwy., Web site
FITZGERALD'S Legendary Houston punk rockers 30footFALL return to Fitz for the annual Christmas show they have been headlining since the late '90s. Openers this year include 30FF contemporaries Spunk and the Ballistics as well as Dead to the World, who formed in 2007; Spunk headlined a few Christmas shows at Fitz themselves back in the day. Doors open at 8 p.m.
2706 White Oak, Web site
GINGER MAN PUB Opened the same year that Back to the Future premiered in theaters at the beginning of Ronald Reagan's second term as president way back in 1985 (has it really been nearly 30 years now?), this Rice Village beer institution opens up at 6 p.m. on Christmas Day for your imbibing pleasure. If you don't have anyone to spend the holiday with, the G-Man's friendly regulars will make you feel at home, whether you want to challenge them to a game of darts or just share a pint.
5607 Morningside, Web site
KENNEALLY'S IRISH PUB How about pizza on Christmas Day? Sure, it's not the traditional holiday dinner choice, but if you get a craving, the house made "Chicago-Style" thin-crust pizzas at Kenneally's Irish Pub will satisfy; try the customer favorite "Shamrock Special," which consists of cheese, mushrooms, onions, bell peppers and corned beef. You can also get an appetizer or sandwich here and wash all of it down with a Guinness or other beer of your choice; Kenneally's opens at 5 p.m.
2111 S. Shepherd, Web site
KOMODO'S PUB No actual reptiles that will be hanging out at Komodo's Pub on Christmas Day (that we know of), but do stop by when they open up at 5 p.m. anyway. The pub is located in an old quaint house, so when you drop in it you might feel like attending a holiday party at a private residence; the bar is located in the old living room and the other rooms and back yard patio are also available to visit with friends or fellow pub patrons. The friendly waitresses and bartenders always make us feel welcome here.
2004 Baldwin, Facebook page
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LITTLE WOODROW'S (MIDTOWN) Little Woodrow's/Midtown opens up at 7 p.m., just in time for NBA action, as the Lakers visit Chicago to take on the Bulls. (We're not sure if that many people are excited to watch the Lakers, who are off to one of their worst starts in team history, though.) Luckily, you don't have to be a sports fan to have a good time at Woodrow's anyway; the 50 beers on tap should help, and the food is not bad either.
2306 Brazos, Web site
LOLA'S DEPOT The purple house in Montrose with no sign, Lola's Depot, is easy to spot this holiday season for any newbies: just look for the elevated, lit-up-Christmas tree on display in the backyard patio that's visible from the street. Bartender Big John opens up Houston's ultimate dive bar aka The Home of Reality at 4pm to serve stiff, cheap drinks to the thirsty regulars.
2327 Grant, Facebook page
SCOUT BAR Clear Lake folks who want to get out of the house won't have far to travel to hear some live music at Scout Bar's "An Acoustic Christmas." This free, unplugged show features the Bourbon Cowboys playing classic country covers; Raf Rivera, lead guitarist for Houston industrial band The Hunger; and Matt Cash, lead vocalist and guitarist for progressive reggae band Cassette Tape, also from Houston. Two Jordans, Jordan Tyding and Jordan Appleby, round out the bill. Doors open at 8 p.m., show starts at 9 p.m.
18307 Egret Bay Blvd., Clear Lake, Web site
WARREN'S INN If you want to escape from your relatives fairly early on Christmas Day, you're in luck; Warren's Inn opens at 2 p.m. Or, if you enjoy spending time with your family, bring them along a little later in the evening; the bar closes at 2 a.m., as usual. Warren's is a Houston institution, with a cozy, welcoming atmosphere that makes it a surefire bet for a holiday outing. Hearing some old tunes play on the bar's eclectic jukebox could make you feel like taking a journey back in time with the ghost of Christmas past.
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