It’s the most wonderful time of the year — Thanksgiving is over and done with, and Christmas music is already filling up the radio stations and your local grocery store. The Black Friday insanity may have died down as well, but that doesn’t mean there’s an end in sight yet to the holiday shopping! Coming up very soon is the annual Nutcracker Faire, with booths and tables galore of all kinds of goods and crafts that would make perfect gifts for your loved ones. While you’re at it, don’t forget to get your tickets for the annual Nutcracker Ballet, opening this weekend! For more details on other activities and celebratory events fast approaching, take a look at these Best Bets!
BEST VIRTUAL TALK BET: Join the Homer Public Library for a virtual author talk on the power of women in science fiction on Thursday, Nov. 30 at 10 a.m. Bestselling and award-winning author Naomi Alderman will discuss her new novel, “The Future,” that delivers a dazzling tour de force where a handful of friends plot a daring heist to save the world from the tech giants whose greed threatens life as we know it. For more information or to register for this event, visit libraryc.org/homerlibrary/33952.
BEST HOLIDAY LIGHTS BET: Homer Chamber of Commerce’s annual Holiday Tree Lighting takes place this year on Thursday, Nov. 30 from 5:30-7 p.m. Meet Santa, enjoy hot cocoa with s’more cups, kids crafts, and Christmas carols by the Homer High School choir! There will also be a special performance by the K.P. Brass Band. Come write and send your letters to Santa, or donate toys to the Homer Police Department’s toy drive! For more information, visit https://www.homeralaska.org/events/holiday-tree-lighting-ceremony/. 201 Sterling Highway.
BEST THRIVING HEALTH BET: Join SVT health and wellness coach Jenifer Dickson for this month’s final Thrive! class on Thursday, Nov. 30 from 6-7:30 p.m. in the Wellness Wing. This week, SVT will be showing a documentary to help viewers continue to learn more about grounding. “The Grounded” tells the story of a man’s personal discovery of the benefits of Earthing and how it affected him and others in the small town of Haines in the rural wilderness of Alaska. Groundbreaking, heartfelt and inspirational, “The Grounding” will leave you looking at nature, our Earth and the very ground beneath your feet in a whole new way! Participate in person or via Zoom. For more information, visit svt.org/events/thrive. 880 East End Road.
BEST HOLIDAY FAIR BET: Homer Council on the Arts’ annual Nutcracker Faire arrives soon! Featuring artists and makers from across the Kenai Peninsula, this event will be held at Homer High School on Saturday, Dec. 2 from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. (masks required from 11 a.m. to noon) and Sunday, Dec. 3 from noon to 5 p.m. (masks required from noon to 1 p.m.). For more information, visit homerart.org/event/2023-nutcracker-faire/. 600 E Fairview Ave.
BEST ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION BET: Join the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center in their celebration of 20 years of serving the Homer community on Saturday, Dec. 2! This free event starts at 5 p.m., with presentations beginning at 6 p.m., and cake-cutting at 6:30 p.m. Light refreshments will be provided by Alaska Geographic. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/AlaskaMaritimeNationalWildlifeRefuge/. 95 Sterling Highway.
BEST FOOD DRIVE BET: Have you got some canned goods or extra food you don’t quite know what to do with? Wonder no more! The Anchor Point Senior Center is holding a Holiday Box Food Drive until mid-December — donations can be dropped off at the Helping Hands Thrift Store or Anchor Point Senior Center on Milo Fritz Avenue in Anchor Point. Some suggested donations include meat (turkey, ham, moose, fish, etc.), eggs, pasta, rice, flour, sugar, fresh fruit, bread, crackers, snacks, butter, nuts, canned goods (milk, veggies, fruit) and pumpkin. Join the Anchor Point Senior Center in making sure everyone has great food this holiday season! For more information, call 907-235-7786. 72750 Milo Fritz Ave.
BEST ARTS AWARDS BET: Homer Council on the Arts is accepting nominations for their 2023 Arts Awards through Saturday, Dec. 9! HCOA confers its Arts Awards annually to individuals and businesses who have contributed significantly to the arts in our community. Find the nomination form online at https://homerart.org/event/homer-council-on-the-arts-annual-awards/. You can also submit your form to HCOA either by mail or in person. Winners will be announced at the HCOA Annual Meeting on Jan. 26, 2024. 355 W Pioneer Ave.