December offers a great variety of holiday doings

As always, for the Christmas season Gwinnett County offers way too much fun. Since none of us can do it all, here's an overview of the choices you can make.

Next weekend is the last time you can tour the Atlanta Magazine Dream House, which benefits the Gwinnett Medical Center. The Northeast Atlanta Ballet will present "The Nutcracker" at the Gwinnett Center and the city of Auburn will be "Sounding Off the Christmas Season." Thrifty shoppers might want to check out Duluth's Car Boot sale with trunk loads of bargains, including some recycled gifts from Christmas past.

The Button Theatre will present a dessert cafe, "Winter Wonderland," at Hudgens Art Center on Dec. 1. Dec. 3 is the big day for Suwanee's Jubilee Christmas Tree Lighting. Also, to coincide with an ancient Southern tradition, Medieval Times is staging UGA vs. Tech "Knight" on Nov. 28. I know, this has nothing to do with Christmas, but I think it's cool and just wanted to throw it out there for anyone whose religion happens to be football.

The first weekend in December brings the Lilburn Christmas Festival, which includes a parade and a tour of historic homes. The Christmas season kickoff in Norcross includes the lighting of the tree with carols sung by the choir of Hopewell Baptist Church. There's also the Sugar Hill Holiday Celebration, Lawrenceville's Christmas on the Historic Square and a Christmas Parade in Buford. Grayson will be celebrating their "Come Home for the Holidays" tour of homes and Duluth's "Hometown Holidays" will include a bake-off featuring a prize of $500, which could really go far with Christmas shopping!

Throughout the month of December there are events to lure you to all corners of the county. The Aurora Theatre in Lawrenceville will perform both "A Christmas Carol" and "Christmas Canteen" while the New London Theatre in Snellville will also offer the Dickens classic. The New Dawn Theatre in Duluth will perform the Christmas Story and the Gwinnett Ballet will keep "The Nutcracker" afoot at the Gwinnett Center.

The Magical Nights of Lights at Lake Lanier Islands will glimmer all month. Bass Pro Shop at Discover Mills and the Gwinnett Heritage Center in Duluth offer dozens of nature-related Christmas workshops while the Southeastern Railway Museum in Duluth invites children to have breakfast with Santa, then take an old-fashioned caboose ride.

And our Gwinnett County parks are certainly showing taxpayers how they earned their distinction as the best park system in the nation. Christmas activities include A Holiday Party Dance Workshop and Dancing with the Sugarplum Fairy at Bogan Park, a Civil War Christmas at McDaniel Farm Park, a Ms. Snowflake Tea at the Lawrenceville Female Seminary and Winter Wonderland at George Pierce Park. Information for these events, plus many more, is available at www.gwinnettcounty.com or www.gcvb.org.

Susan Larson is a Lilburn resident. E-mail her at susanlarson4@yahoo.com.