1. Attend Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland will be filled with Christmas and fun on Dec. 23 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Santa will be there along with his character friends located at 34 E. Thompson Street in Jacksonville. Do your Christmas card family photo while you enjoy the fun at our Holiday Background Photo Center. There will be games for the kids and vendors for parents to do their shopping. While at the Elf Workshop have yourself some s’mores and hot cocoa. It is a great way to make family memories and get in the holiday spirit. For more information, call 910-546-5027 or visit www.onslowcountync.gov/parks.

2. Learn to dance

Carteret Parks and Recreation offers Intro to Ballroom Dancing every Friday at the Old Beaufort Elementary School. Next class will be held at 6 p.m. Dec. 23 with a transitional class at 7 p.m. For more information, call 252-808-3301.

3. Visit the USO

The USO of North Carolina Jacksonville Center will host Christmas dinner Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The meal is free to all active duty, dependents and retirees. While military ID is required, a reservation is not. The meal will be at the center, 9 Tallman Street. For more information, call 910-455-3411.

4. Donate blood

The American Red Cross has scheduled the following blood drives on Dec. 23: 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Onslow Memorial Hospital located at 317 Western Blvd. and from 1 to 6 p.m. at Frater Joy Worship Center located at 102 F Profesional Dr. in Beaufort. Another is scheduled from noon to 4 p.m. on Dec. 26 at the DoubleTree by Hilton, located at 100 Middle St. in New Bern.

5. Explore the winter sky

Cape Fear Museum in Wilmington offers a family program “Stories Under the Stars” at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Dec. 27. Enjoy the ancient tales preserved in the stars and explore the winter sky. Free with general admission. For more information, call 910-798-4367.

6. Head to the movies to see the PG-13 romantic action-adventure “Passengers” in which a spacecraft traveling to a distant colony planet has a malfunction in its sleep chambers and two passengers (Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt) are awakened 90 years early; “Assassin’s Creed” based on the popular video game in which a man explores the memories of his ancestor and discovers he is a descendant of the secret Assassins society; “Fences” set in the 1950s as an African-American father struggles with race relations while trying to raise his family, “A Monster Calls,” PG-13, about a boy who seeks the help of a tree monster to cope with his single mom’s terminal illness; and lastly the PG animated flick “Sing” in which a koala tries to restore his theater to its former glory by producing the world’s greatest singing competition.

7. For the first time since 1978, Christmas and the first night of Hanukkah overlap. Hanukkah, the eight-day Jewish Festival of Lights, begins at sundown on Saturday which is also Christmas Eve. Whether you’re celebrating for religious or secular reasons, the holidays are a great opportunity to explore your family traditions and spread joy through acts of kindness like volunteering. Stay in and watch a film with the family, if that’s more in line.

8. Before you forget who gave you what this holiday season, get out a notepad and write some special thank you notes in preparation for Monday, Dec. 26, National Thank You Note Day. A personalized message has special meaning and the receiver will enjoy getting a thank you in the mail. Use #NationalThankYouNoteDay to post on social media.

9. If you’re still longing for sweets after the holiday, Monday is also National Candy Cane Day. So grab one off the tree and take a bite or crush a couple up and add them to your favorite dessert recipes. Here’s one idea: Added crushed candy canes to store-bought hot fudge and serve with vanilla ice cream.

10. If you’re looking for some sports action, there is plenty this weekend. College football bowl games are happening throughout the holiday weekend, the last few NFL games of the season are taking place, and the NBA and NHL are in action as well. Check your local listings for TV times.