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Holiday Guide 2013

Refreshing the holidays

The holidays mean different things to different people. To some it may be about buying presents and placating that inner demon that always says BUY BUY BUY (guilty). To some they are about home and hearth and family and fun. And to others they may be about something as simple as those little red holiday Starbucks cups.

The thing is, when you run into any yearly publication, or celebration, or holiday, things tend to start to feel familiar. So how can we spruce that up? What can we tell you about this year that we didn't tell you about last year? Luckily, I think you'll find within these warm and inviting pages stories that will not only interest and inform you, but will present different ideas toward celebrating the holiday season. It isn't just toys and shopping and ribbons. I hope you'll laugh too, because if there's one thing the holidays need, it is a sprinkle of humor.

This year I took a deliberate approach to bring in things that are a little different from our holiday-guide norm, and I'm also very proud to introduce you to not only four new City writers, but also four new City illustrators who have helped make this an issue I think and hope you all will enjoy.

If you want to keep away from the Vegan police and hold on to those superpowers over the holidays, we have a food guide to eating (and shopping) vegan and locally for the holidays. We've got the funny twice over with an essay on growing up afraid of Santa Claus, and a gift giving guide that might not be quite what you expect. Last but not least, we have a look at holistic treatments and how to give what might be the most important gift of all — wellness — this season.

A little bit different? Yup. We're City. We're alternative. We are different. And I sincerely hope you enjoy our 2013 Holiday Guide. -- BY WILLIE CLARK

In This Guide...

  • Holistic for the holidays

    Giving the gift of wellness
    The holidays are a stressful time, and this stress can take its toll on mind, body, and soul. We live in a world where we bombard our bodies with electrical signals, sit all day in uncomfortable positions, and go entire days without interacting with the earth's natural settings.

  • A Toy Story

    A look at holiday gifts past and present
    Kids today don't know just how good they have it when it comes to toys. I can only imagine the confusion that would ensue if a kid were expecting a PlayStation 4 for Christmas, only to open up an Atari instead.

  • He sees you when you're sleeping

    On fearing Saint Nick
    The whole notion of Santa Claus had always creeped me out. I wish I could say that, as an adult, this skepticism has lifted—but it hasn't.

  • Moving past the Turkey

    How to Vegan-ize the Holidays
    Last year, I spent a few months halfheartedly attempting veganism. When I first considered eating that way, one thing came to mind: substitutes.

  • 2013 Holiday Events Calendar

    Continuing/Ongoing [Exhibit] Annual Holiday Poinsettia Show at Lamberton Conservatory.