Dec. 22–23 | River Oaks Theatre
Because people are apparently allowed no small joys in life, there is some controversy as to whether Die Hard, the 1988 action flick, qualifies as a Christmas movie. There are compelling arguments on both sides, but we say go just to experience the thrilling fantasy of a not-bald Bruce Willis.
Tickets $11. River Oaks Theatre, 2009 W Gray St. 713-524-2175. More info and tickets at landmarktheaters.com.
Thru Dec. 23 | Queensbury Theatre
When Marley Singletary took over at Queensbury Theatre, she seemed to bring some of the spirit from the defunct TUTS Underground series. In fact, for Striking 12, she brought in the same cast as when she did the show with TUTS. The holiday musical is a modern retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Match Girl, in which a grouchy New Yorker determined to spend the holidays alone experiences an unexpected change of heart.
Tickets from $22. Queensbury Theatre, 12777 Queensbury Ln. 713-467-4497. More info and tickets at queensburytheatre.org.
Thru Jan. 6 | Bayou Bend Collections and Gardens
If you've already driven through River Oaks one too many times, up your game and ring in the holidays at the home of none of than Ima Hogg, Houston's dearly departed grande dame. The 14-acre estate is festooned with holiday lights, although there are plenty of other ways to pretend it's cold outside, such as an area to engage in cotton snowball fights. A few extra dollars will allow you an inside peek of the mansion.
Tickets $13. Bayou Bend Collections and Gardens, 6003 Memorial Dr. 713-639-7750. More info and tickets at mfah.org.
Dec. 23 | MATCH
If the holidays are doing it for you, Clear Lake native Robby Bennett plans to bring the magic. This actually-good stage show eschews the cheap tricks to engage the audience (often by inviting it to particpate) in a storytelling spectacle that also includes acrobat Emma D'Lemma and sword-swallowing comedian Jim MacKenzie.
Tickets $35. MATCH, 3400 Main St. 713-521-4533. More info and tickets at matchouston.org.
Dec. 24 | Underbelly
For the restaurant's third (and perhaps final?) holiday-themed event, Underbelly is serving up a three-course dinner riffing on all the best parts of National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation—complete with Turkey and jello.
Tickets $75. Underbelly, 1100 Westheimer Rd. 713-528-9800. More info and tickets at underbellyhouston.com.