1st Annual BrewHumbug UnChristmas Fiestakkah @ The League of Extraordinary Brewers Friday, 6 p.m.-1 a.m. 907 Franklin St., Ste 150
This isn't your typical Christmas party. The folks at The League of Extraordinary Brewers invite anyone and everyone to their first BrewHumbug UnChristmas Fiestakkah featuring a white elephant beer bottle swap; your ticket into the event is one wrapped special beer, so bring your favorite and walk away with something new. The League will also release its Oak Ages Seasonal WassailCopter, which they describe as a "slightly sweet spiced winter ale" -- and it's brewed with real Wassail. Throughout the night you'll have the opportunity to take a picture with Santa; there will also be Christmas cookies! Don't be frightened by the mutilated reindeer and undead gingerbread men cookies, though; they will still taste good. Watch Bad Santa at midnight and enjoy BrewNog, warm beer Wassail and gingerbread stout ice cream. You can also bring any beer you want to donate to the Beer for the Homeless Gift Drive.
The 40th Annual Dickens on the Strand @ Historic Downtown Galveston Friday, 5-9 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. 2200 Strand St., Galveston
This year's festival begins on Friday, unlike in years past, and each day features a variety of craft vendors, musical entertainment, street entertainment and food vendors, including Bake Me A Dream, Old Tyme Kettle Korn and Granny's Gingerbread & Wassail. Single-day tickets cost $10, a Saturday and Sunday pass costs $20, and a three-day pass costs $30; dress in Victorian attire and your tickets are half-price. Unfortunately, the Saint Arnold Strand Walking Tour is sold out, but there are still tickets available for the Dinner with the Dickens on Friday at 6 p.m., featuring spiced sweet potato bisque with toasted basil, herb-crusted loin of pork and kiln-dried cherry and apricot bread pudding; tickets for the dinner are $80 per person. Tickets for the Tea with Queen Victoria on Sunday at 4 p.m. are still available as well. For $60 you will enjoy traditional tea with Duchess of Cambridge crustless finger sandwiches, an assortment of canape rolls, English tea biscuits, scones and holiday cookies.
Breakfast with Santa @ Hotel Derek Saturday, 9-11 a.m. 2525 W Loop South Fwy
Hotel Derek will host a Breakfast with Santa on Saturday featuring special Christmas dishes, such as gingerbread waffles. There will also be a hot cocoa bar to help kids and parents get into the spirit of the season. After the kids have eaten breakfast, taken a picture with Santa and told him what they want for Christmas, the whole family can watch movies and make crafts. Tickets cost $29 and include valet parking; there is no ticket fee for children 2 and under. Call Hotel Derek to reserve your family's spot at this Christmas breakfast.
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Strawberry U-Pick Season @ Blessington Farms Saturday, 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. 510 Chisholm Rd, Simonton
Take the whole family to Blessington Farms on Saturday for the first official day of strawberry season. Fill up your baskets with fresh strawberries, then take the kids to the Holiday Farm Funland to enjoy hay rides, a barrel train ride, slides, a hay maze and other fun activities. Admittance into the farm is free, but you must pay $5 per pound of strawberries; admittance into the Holiday Farm Funland costs $8 and is free for children under 18 months.
Benefit for My Dee Dee's Pie Shoppe @ Haven Saturday, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. 2502 Algerian Way
In order to help support Bella-Katherine Curtis, owner of My Dee Dee's Pie Shoppe, several Houston chefs and restaurants will host a fundraiser at Haven on Saturday. Admission into the event is a $50 donation. Ronnie Killen will supply the BBQ, and Randy Evans of Haven and Kevin Naderi of Roost will provide the sides. Saint Arnold Brewery will serve beer, as well. Rebecca Masson of Fluff Bake Bar teamed up with Naderi to create this event and the support from the Houston restaurant community has been outstanding. Masson's products from Fluff Bake Bar, along with products from Michael's Cookie Jar, Paulie's cookies, and baked goods from Samantha Mendoza of Triniti will be available to guests during the bake sale. There will also be a silent auction featuring donations from chefs, restaurants and other businesses in Houston. Help Curtis continue baking and selling her pies by attending this fundraiser on Saturday.