The economy is in shambles, LA actors’ talk of another strike, and the holidays seem miles away without 4 feet of snow. Not to worry, head to the world famous Grove for LA holiday festivities!

Centrally located in the heart of Los Angeles, The Grove is considered a boutique outdoor shopping mall that encompasses retail shops, restaurants, and Movie Theater over the sprawling, well manicured grounds.

Adjacent to The Grove is The Farmer’s Market, featuring additional restaurants and small boutique shops. The family and pet friendly location decks the halls for December, featuring not only spectacular decorations, but Holiday Entertainment. Check out Santa’s Cottage, where you can have your (or your pets) picture taken with the jolly guy himself.

Enjoy the carolers and the holiday brass and musical performances all throughout the season. The Top Hats, a spiffy dance troop performs every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night at 7 and 8pm, and don’t miss being in your own personal winter wonderland with snowflakes falling magically every night at 7 and 8pm.

While embracing the Holiday atmosphere, browse through stores such as Banana Republic, Barnes and Noble, Barney’s Co-op, Crate and Barrel, Marciano, Michael Stars, and Nordstrom. Catch a glimpse of the dancing fountain in the Nordstrom’s courtyard, which is designed by the same folks that did the Bellagio fountains in Las Vegas.

If hunger strikes, head to the adjoining Farmer’s Market. An LA icon since 1934, The Market celebrates with free holiday arts and crafts, a holiday marionette show, and several different variations of musical entertainment including a mariachi band and Yuletide carolers. Sample different tasty treats from Bennett’s Ice Cream, Magee’s House of Nuts, and Littlejohn’s English Toffee House. All confections are hand made from scratch every day, and one bite is considered a little piece of heaven.

For more substantial eats, head to Bryan’s Pit Barbecue, known for its Texas style meat and yummy side dishes. The barbeque sauce is rumored to be some of the best in the southland, so good that locals take containers of the sweet stuff home. If you are not in the move for barbeque, try out Mr. Marcel Pain Vin Et Fromage. Locals swear by this French eatery and sing praises for the coq au vin and perfect quiches. Once you get your fill, head back to the outdoor mall to enjoy the holidays, Los Angeles style.

What & Where:
The Grove (189 The Grove Dr; 323-900-8000)
The Farmers Market (6333 W. 3rd St; 323-933-0616)