Kick off your holiday season with the Faneuil Hall Marketplace Tree Lighting. Santa Claus will press the magic button outside of Quincy Market this year, lighting the tree and transforming the square into a winter wonderland. The free event will take place from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. faneuilhallmarketplace.com
Sprint, walk, or scuttle around Franklin Park this Thanksgiving. The annual Franklin Park Turkey Trot kicks off at 9 a.m. at the Franklin Park Golf Clubhouse. Runners loop around Scarboro Pond, past Schoolmaster Hill, and cross the finish line back at the clubhouse. Costumes optional, but registration — $35 adults, $18 children 6-17, free for children under 6 — required at franklinparkcoalition.org.
Snowflakes and Sugar Plums
Waltz on over to the Citizens Bank Opera House for the opening night of Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker. With a royal rat battle and a vibrant candy cane dance, the show enchants audiences of all ages. Choreographed by artistic director Mikko Nissinen and performed by the company’s dancers, the classical ballet runs through December 31. Find the schedule and tickets, starting at $25, at bostonballet.org.
Check out more than a hundred independent galleries and boutiques this Black Friday at the SoWa Winter Festival. Local creatives will display their work for sale at the SoWa Power Station. Scattered among the artists and products will be artisan food stands and musicians performing live tunes. Thursdays to Sundays, through December 17. Hours vary. sowaboston.com
Exchange a vintage dollhouse for secondhand rain boots at the Mattapan Branch of the Boston Public Library. Instead of sending hand-me-downs to the dump, head to the Family Clothing & Toy Swap from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Donated goods must be clean and functional. Though contributions are encouraged, you do not need to bring something to take something. Free. bpl.org
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