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5 things to do in NEO: Winter Solstice, 'Frost' and more

People watch Santa outdoors at the West Woods Winter Solstice Celebration.
Geauga Park District
Dress in layers for outdoor entertainment at the West Woods Winter Solstice Celebration Thursday.

Spend time with friends and family this week enjoying arts and culture around the region. From a few final holiday shows to interesting exhibits, there’s something for everyone.

Embrace winter

Enjoy the longest night of the year outdoors at the West Woods in Geauga County. The park district hosts a Winter Solstice Celebration for all ages Thursday with a candlelit forest walk, bonfire, music, craft making and more. While part of the program is indoors, dress warmly to spend the evening outside from 7:30-9:30 p.m.

Frolic at ‘Frost’

The Cleveland Botanical Garden is decorated inside and out with lights, trees, themed rooms and gingerbread houses for “Frost: An Ice-Capped Garden Experience.” The botanical garden’s new family-friendly exhibit includes an icicle xylophone and tunnel of mirrors. Visit in the evening on Thursday, Friday or Saturday to enjoy live entertainment in addition to the holiday-themed displays.

‘Say yes’ to Jackie O

One of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis’ biggest fans is Monte Durham of “Say Yes to the Dress” fame, and his Jackie O collectibles are on view at the National First Ladies Library & Museum in Canton in “Beyond Camelot: The Life and Legacy of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.” A replica of her silk taffeta wedding dress is one highlight. Other dresses, letters, photos and Jackie O memorabilia are on display through April 27, 2024. The museum is open 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

‘White Christmas’

While it likely won’t snow this year on Dec. 25, Rubber City Theatre presents “White Christmas” at E.J. Thomas Hall in Akron. Based on the classic holiday film with the same name, the feel-good musical features Irving Berlin songs like "Blue Skies" and "Sisters." Performances are Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m.

Soulful cheer

Get in the holiday spirit with Hubb’s Groove Soulful Christmas performing Friday on the Knight Stage at the Akron Civic Theatre. The band’s roots date back to 1996 as Moments Notice, and the current group is led by drummer Robert Hubbard Jr. Expect jazzy and soulful holiday tunes beginning at 8 p.m.

Carrie Wise is the deputy editor of arts and culture at Ideastream Public Media.