[image-1]HOLIDAYS | Give in to holiday cheer

Get ready people: this Saturday is going to be a spectacularly over-the-top holiday blow-out. Seriously. There are so many events going on, we couldn’t choose just one: check out our highlights. Half-Moon Outfitters presents their 18th annual Reindeer Run this Saturday at 9 a.m. and invites everyone with some holiday enthusiasm to join them in front of Southend Brewery downtown to run (or walk) around Charleston’s lower peninsula. Eighty percent of the proceeds from the run will benefit the MUSC Children’ Hospital, and the remaining twenty percent will go toward the Charitable Society of Charleston’s endowment. Consider it a shining opportunity to break up those holiday feasts. Get more info at www.reindeerrun.org.

At 4:30 p.m., head to Marion Square and join Mayor Joe and Santa Claus for the official lighting of the 60-foot Tree of Lights.

Next up: the Parade of Boats. The 29th annual event beats all those animated Christmas lawn decorations by taking them out on the water. Boat owners of Charleston are invited to dress their boats up in all their glory for everyone to enjoy both on sea and on land. The parade will begin in Mt. Pleasant around 5:30 p.m. and proceed through Charleston Harbor, with a lot of merry-making in between and on into the night. And of course, viewing the parade is a totally free event. Fireworks begin at 6:45 p.m. Call (843) 724-4141 for more info.

To top off a great day with some rowdy holiday spirit, the Chucktown Santa Pub Crawl goes from 5-10 p.m. (after which you are probably going to skip to your own tune anyway). All proceeds will benefit the Carolina Children’s Charity, a local nonprofit that supports children with birth defects and childhood diseases. Participating bars include Mad River Grille, Moe’s Downtown, The Griffon, Blind Tiger, Johnson’s Pub, Henry’s, and Light. Oh, and don’t think about joining the group unless you are donning your best Christmas or Santa costume, because they are mandatory. See www.chucktownsantapubcrawl.com for more info. And don’t forget the parade downtown on Sunday from 2-5 p.m. —Hadley Lyman Sat., Dec. 6.

[image-2]EVENT | Baby, it’s chilly outside

The weather is getting cold. Cabin fever at the workplace will soon set in. The Charleston Animal Society wants you and some local celebrities to funnel any pending energy into a cause both beneficial and delicious: a chili cook-off! All proceeds will benefit the humane programs at the CAS. Local news anchors, weather forecasters, city council people, radio DJs and news columnists (a.k.a. Lowcountry celebrities) are turning on the heat and taking the competition to a different level for the ninth year. The winners earn the title “Charleston Chili King & Queen,” and your tummies get to reap the benefits. Aside from chili, there will be beer, wine, oysters, and hot dogs (and oh yes, autographs). And don’t worry if you get so deep into conversation with sportscaster Brendan Clark about his award-winning chili last year that you realize you haven’t seen your 7-year-old nephew in a good 15 minutes. He’ll probably be burning off energy running around the new Kid’s Fun Zone, or giving one of the local celebrity judges some tips. —Hadley Lyman Sat. Dec. 6, 1-5 p.m. $25, $10/children 10+, free/children under 10. Charleston Maritime Center. 10 Wharf St. Downtown. (843) 329-1546. www.charlestonanimalsociety.org

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