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'Model trains in three scales will be on display and operating at the West Bay Model Railroad Association's annual Christmas show Dec. 9-11 at the model railroad building on Merrill Street between Ravenswood Avenue and the Menlo Park train station in Menlo Park. Raffle for a new train set. Railroad memorabilia will be on display. Hours: 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11. Free admission, donations appreciated. Model Railroad Building, 1090 Merill St., Menlo Park. wbmrra.ning.com or call 322-0685.
Alternative Gift Market Trinity Church in Menlo Park hosts Alternative Gift Market on Dec. 11. Proceeds support nonprofit organizations and benefit those in need. Dec. 4, 11, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Trinity Church, 330 Ravenswood Ave., Menlo Park. Call 650-326-2083. www.trinitymenlopark.org/
'Twas the Night Before Christmas' The Christmas poem set to music will be performed Dec. 4, 10 and 11, 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. $12-$15 kids/seniors, $18-$20 adults. Woodside Performing Arts Center, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside. Call 650-323-5292. www.twasthenight.org
Nativity School Christmas Tree Lot All-volunteer run fundraiser for Nativity School. Trees available: Douglas, Grand, Fraser, and Noble Firs; wreaths and garland; flameproofing and delivery services. Through Dec. 17, Nativity School, 210 Oak Grove Ave., Menlo Park. www.nativitytrees.com
Spring Down Winter Horse Show featuring classes for a variety of levels, Dec. 11, 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Free to public. $15/per class. Spring Down Equestrian Center, 725 Portola Road, Portola Valley. Call 650-851-1114. www.springdown.com
'A Gaelic Christmas' Mary Mc Laughlin and her Cor Aingli (Irish for "Angelic Choir") will present "A Gaelic Christmas." They will perform choral and ensemble arrangements of traditional Irish carols, as well as familiar carols translated into the Irish language, Dec. 11, 2-3:30 p.m. $20/$25. Vallambrosa Center, 250 Oak Grove Ave., Menlo Park. Call 831-227-6049. www.coraingli.com
'Welcome Winter' The Menlo Park Chorus celebrates seasonal music in its "Welcome Winter" concert. The program features popular pieces, with director April McNeely. Dec. 9, 7:30-9 p.m. $15 general, $12 seniors/students, children under 12 free. St. Bede's Episcopal Church, 2650 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park. Call 408-314-7589. www.menloparkchorus.org/index.html
Family Holiday Concert Julie Watts narrates "Peter and the Wolf." Also: "Harry Potter," "The Typewriter," "Sleigh Ride" and a Sousa march. Dec. 10, 3-5 p.m. $25 (door), $20 (advance), $10 children and students. Canada College Main Theatre, 4200 Farm Hill Blvd., Woodside. Call 650-766-3509. www.redwoodsymphony.org
'The Secret Garden' TheatreWorks presents the musical adaptation of "The Secret Garden," based on the classic novel about a young orphan who discovers a hidden garden. Through Dec. 31, 8-9:45 p.m. $19-$72. Lucie Stern Theatre, 1305 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. Call 650-463-1960. theatreworks.org
David Gerard: Magician and Mindreader Dec. 9, 7:30-11:30 p.m. $15. The Dragon Theater, 535 Alma St., Palo Alto. Call 650-516-7459.
'Learn How To License Your Ideas' Featured speaker: Stephen Key. Dec. 10, 9:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. $30. Tech Shop, 120 Independence Drive, Menlo Park. Call 650-964-1576. www.inventorsalliance.org
Rebecca Fannin with Eric Savitz "Startup Asia: Top Strategies for Cashing in on Asia's Innovation Boom." Dec. 9, 6-8 p.m. Kepler's, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321.
Richard Heinberg "The End of Growth" describes what policy makers, communities, and families can do to build a new economy that operates within Earth's budget of energy and resources. Dec. 8, 7 p.m. General admission requires purchase of event book or a $10 gift card (admits 2). Kepler's, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321.
NABE SVRT December Meeting & Luncheon "Consumer Spending: Global Forces at Work and Their Impact in the U.S." Tom Hester, senior international economist, Business and Economic Insights Group, Visa Inc., will discuss five factors impacting consumer spending around the world over lunch. Dec. 13, noon-2 p.m. $20 members/$25 guests. Menlo Park Library, 800 Alma St., Menlo Park. Call 650-233-9613. svrt.org
Kids & Family
'The Chanukah Experience' Chanukah celebration including foods, crafts, games and more. Dec. 11, 1-4 p.m. $5 per child. The Lucie Stern Center, 1305 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. Call 650-424-9800. chabadgsb.com/TCE
Jenni Holm: 'A Very Babymouse Christmas' Dec. 7, 6 p.m. Free. Kepler's, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321.
Short Attention Span Circus Juggler, magician, contortionist Jean Paul Valjean will perform circus tricks Dec. 12, 4-4 p.m. Free. Atherton Library, 2 Dinkelspiel Station Lane, Atherton. Call 650-328-2422. www.smcl.org
Story Time with Jim LaMarche Henry and his out-of-work father are selling Christmas trees. They give a leftover tree to construction workers building Rockefeller Center. That tree becomes the first Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. Dec. 11, 11:30 a.m. Kepler's, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park.
Birds of Bedwell Bayfront Park See and learn about birds at Bedwell Bayfront Park. Birders will bring scope, binoculars, and books to show you close-up views of different birds of water and land. Dec. 10, 9-11 a.m. Free. Bedwell Bayfront Park, end of Marsh Road (at Bayfront Expwy), Menlo Park. Call 650-325-7841. www.friendsofbayfrontpark.org
'Blend For A Cause' On Dec. 11, Piccolo Bella Hair Design along with a blend of local Menlo Park businesses, will host a winter season celebration and beauty fundraiser. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. $25. Stephen Miller Gallery, 800 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park. Call 650- 906-6512.
'Small Treasures' Portola Art Gallery hosts group exhibit of smaller works for holiday gifs. Throughout December, the gallery's artists will show paintings and fine-art photographs. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. Portola Art Gallery, 75 Arbor Road, Menlo Park. Call 650-273-3505. www.portolaartgallery.com
Holiday Skating on the Square Downtown Redwood City hosts an outdoor skating rink through the winter, noon-10 p.m. $12 - skates are free. Courthouse Square, 2200 Broadway St., Redwood City.