15 Things To Do in Cleveland This Weekend (Dec. 23-26) – Cleveland Scene

Pogues tribute act Boys from the County Hell. - COURTESY OF BOYS FROM THE COUNTY HELL

  • Courtesy of Boys from the County Hell
  • Pogues tribute act Boys from the County Hell.

Our weekly picks of the best things to do in Cleveland this weekend. Also check out our full Cleveland event calendar.

THU 12/23

The Boys from the County Hell

When the Boys from the County Hell first got together in 2000 as a Pogues cover band, it was supposed to be just a one-night stand. But after selling out their first show at the now shuttered Euclid Tavern, the group’s popularity escalated. As you can imagine, the band is pretty busy by the time St. Patty’s Day rolls around. But it regularly plays a special holiday show this time of year too and hits the House of Blues stage tonight at 8. Check the venue’s website for more info.

308 Euclid Ave., 216-523-2583, houseofblues.com.

A Christmas Carol

This Great Lakes Theater production of Charles Dickens’ classic never fails to engage and delight. Framed cozily as a story within a story in this adaptation, the production really comes alive once the ghost of Jacob Marley appears, dragging his chains and creaking eerily with every movement. This annual tribute to knee-jerk liberal sentiments, like compassion for the downtrodden, is always a must-see — whether you’ve seen it before or not. Today’s performances take place at 3 and 7:30 p.m. at the Ohio Theatre. Consult the Playhouse Square website for more info and for COVID protocols.

1501 Euclid Ave., 216-241-6000, playhousesquare.org.

Holiday Lunchtime Music Series

Young artists from the CIM-CWRU joint music program will present a lively mix of seasonal chamber music today at noon at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Admission is free, but seating is limited.

11150 East Blvd., 216-421-7350, clevelandart.org.

Home for the Holidays

Cleveland’s comedy scene just keeps getting better. New comics keep cropping up and the veteran comics on the scene continue to hone their skills. Because some of the best comics will be in town for the holidays, Hilarities has booked them for one special night. Dubbed Home for the Holidays, tonight’s concert features some of Cleveland’ finest comedians. The jokes start flowing at 7 p.m.

2035 East Fourth St., 216-241-7425, pickwickandfrolic.com.

Jukebox Breakdown aka Emo Night CLE

A regular dance party that features emo music (think Weezer, Panic! At the Disco, Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance) from the ’90s and beyond, the event begins at 9 p.m. at Mahall’s 20 Lanes in Lakewood. Check the venue website for more info.

13200 Madison Ave., Lakewood, 216-521-3280, mahalls20lanes.com.

Vanessa Rubin and Her Trio

Vanessa Rubin plays a special holiday concert tonight at 7 at the Bop Stop. Expect to hear standards, originals, ballads and blues. Tickets to attend the show in person are $20. The event will also be streamed on Bop Stop’s Facebook page. Accessing the stream is free but donations to the band and the venue are appreciated and can be made at givebutter.com/VRubin.

2920 Detroit Ave., 216-771-6551, themusicsettlement.org.

The Wild Winter Lights Festival

The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo has brought back its holiday light event. The zoo has reworked the bright spectacle to include thousands of lights. Dubbed the Wild Winter Lights Festival, the event takes place today and Sunday from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. It continues through Jan. 2. Find out more about info and buy tickets on the website.

3900 Wildlife Way, 216-661-6500, clemetzoo.com.

Wonder Cleveland

Inspired by Candytopia in San Francisco and Otherworld in Columbus, WonderCleveland is a fully immersive experience in which guests are encouraged to “explore, interact, and play with everything in sight.” In addition to taking pictures with a virtual Santa, guests can use an app to encounter a triceratops inside a volcano and a teen-aged robot. “WonderCleveland is the only experience in northeast Ohio in which the exhibits will actually interact with the guests through the use of interactive video components and projection mapping,” reads a press release about the installation that’s at the Great Lakes Mall in Mentor. Check the website for ticket prices and more info.


FRI 12/24


Wicked, the Broadway musical based on The Wizard of Oz, has been through town a few times already. Yet every time it comes back around, it puts up huge numbers. While it might seem better suited to Halloween, the play, which details how the Wicked Witch of the West came to develop her deep-seated hatred for Glenda the Good, appeals to the entire family. So with some free time over the holidays, why not take the whole brood to Playhouse Square to check it out? Today’s performance takes place at 1:30 at the State Theatre, where performances continue through Jan. 2. Consult the Playhouse Square website for more info.

1519 Euclid Ave., 216-241-6000, playhousesquare.org.

SAT 12/25

12 Assholes of Christmas

It’s a tradition that at noon on Christmas day, the punk rock club Now That’s Class opens its doors to welcome “those who don’t have anywhere to go or don’t wanna go anywhere” for an event dubbed 12 Assholes of Christmas. From 3 to 9 p.m. today, the bar will offer specials on select Great Lakes beers. The price goes up by increments as the night goes on. It’s free.

11213 Detroit Ave., 216-221-8576, nowthatsclass.net.

Blue Lunch with special guest Hank Mowery & Tom Moore

After skipping last year’s annual Christmas night latke party because of the pandemic, the local jazz/swing/blues act Blue Lunch continues the tradition this year at the Beachland Tavern. Musical guests Hank Mowery and Tom Moore will be on hand for the festivities. The concert begins at 8 p.m., and tickets cost $15 in advance, $18 at the door.

15711 Waterloo Rd., 216-383-1124, beachlandballroom.com.

RBG Christmas

The talented local hip-hop ensemble Muamin Collective hosts its annual RBG Christmas Night at the Grog Shop with special guests LMNTL, Downhill Collective, Starks and Opus. It all begins at 8 p.m. Check the Grog Shop website for more info.

2785 Euclid Heights Blvd., Cleveland Heights, 216-321-5588, grogshop.gs.

SUN 12/26

Cavaliers vs. Toronto Raptors

The Toronto Raptors haven’t been the same since star forward Kawhi Leonard left for Los Angeles a few years ago. Still, the Raptors have played .500 ball this season and should make for a tough opponent for the Cavs. The two teams face off at 6 tonight at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Consult the venue’s website for ticket prices and more info.

One Center Court, 216-420-2000, rocketmortgagefieldhouse.com.

A Concert of Hope & Love for Mayfield, KY

Local singer-songwriter Charlie Wiener has organized this benefit concert for the good people of Mayfield, KY, who were impacted by a deadly tornado earlier this month. Austin ‘Walkin’ Cane, Colin Dussault, Jeff Varga, Tracy Marie, Cary Mathews, Bob Frank, Kendall Stauffer, Jin Ballard, Anita Keys & Ryann Anderson, and the Blue Drivers are slated to perform. The benefit concert begins at 7 p.m. at the Beachland Ballroom. Admission is a suggested $20 donation.

15711 Waterloo Rd., 216-383-1124, beachlandballroom.com.

Carlos Jones & the P.L.U.S. Band Holiday Revival

Veteran local singer-songwriter Carlos Jones has become one of Northeast Ohio’s top draws. Tonight at 6 at the Music Box, he and his backing band will play a special holiday show that will undoubtedly feature reggae-fied versions of some Christmas classics. Ras Khalifa & the IJamm Reggae Band open the show. Consult the Music Box website for ticket prices and more info.

1148 Main Ave., 216-242-1250, musicboxcle.com.