FROM STAFF REPORTS
Traverse City — Grand Traverse Academy's Symphonic, Varsity, Concert and Junior High Cadet bands will present a holiday concert on Thursday, Dec. 6, at 6:30 p.m., while the school's elementary and secondary choirs will perform at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11. Both events will take place in the school's main gym, 1245 Hammond Road East. The programs are free and open to the public.
St. Nicholas visits
Kingsley — St. Nicholas will visit St. Mary-Hannah School Sunday, Dec. 9.
The visit will take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the school, 2912 W. M-113. The Knights of Columbus will serve a pancake breakfast from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Donations will be accepted.
New this year is an Elf Shop for children to shop for Christmas gifts. The shop is sponsored by the Home and School Association. All items are $2 or less.
Traverse City — Reservations are due Friday, Dec. 7, for the next meeting of the Grand Traverse Association of Retired School Employees.
The chapter meets at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, at the Holiday Inn West Bay, 615 Front St. The $12 cost includes the gratuity. The meeting will include the chapter's Scholarship Music Program. For details or reservations, call 933-4269.
Elk Rapids — Elk Rapids High School will serve up a Madrigal dining experience on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 7-8.
The ninth annual Madrigal Feast will start at 6:30 p.m. each night at the high school on Meguzee Point Road. Tickets are $25 each and can be reserved by calling 264-8108. Proceeds support the Elk Rapids Schools' vocal music program.
Concert and lock-in
Kalkaska — An all-ages concert and lock-in on Saturday, Dec. 8, will benefit Toys for Tots, the Michigan Food Bank and Kalkaska Area Interfaith Resources (KAIR).
The doors open at 3:30 p.m. for the 4 p.m. concert at the Kaliseum. The after-party lock-in starts at 11:30 p.m. and students younger than 18 will need parental permission slips to spend the night.
The concert is $10 with a donation of a new, unwrapped toy, a non-perishable food item or a gently used coat or blanket; $15 without a donation. Lock-in admission is a $2 donation. For details, visit www.obscurrus.com.
Art 'decks the walls'
Traverse City — Artcenter Traverse City's "Deck the Walls-$100 and Under" show will open with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8. The show and sale continues through Jan. 25.
The newly-renovated 630 North Mercato, Building 50, at The Village at Grand Traverse Commons, will be decorated with Artcenter Traverse City members' artwork. All of the works will be priced $100 or less. North Mercato hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday, and noon-4 p.m. Sunday.
Church sells cookies
Traverse City — Trinity Lutheran Church presents its 14th annual Christmas Cookie Sale on Saturday, Dec. 8, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Shoppers can pick from more than 25 varieties of cookies. German Christmas Stollen and variety packs of cookies also will be available. Free coffee and sample cookies will be offered to those who arrive prior to 9 a.m.; 941-3487.
Chapter Chicks club
Traverse City — Girls in grades three through five and a special adult are invited to the Monday, Dec. 10, meeting of the Chapter Chicks Book Club.
The group will meet at 6:30 p.m. at the Peninsula Community Library, 2699 Island View Road. There will be a potluck dinner, discussion of Judy Blume's "Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great" and a related craft. There is no charge. For details or to sign up, call the library, 223-7700.
Try art classes
Traverse City — Blackbird Arts, 1485 Barlow St., will offer a week of "Try It For $10" classes from Monday through Saturday, Dec. 10-15.
Day and evening classes are available at various times for children and adults. Offerings include printmaking/mixed media with artist Glenn Wolff, clay and pottery wheel classes with Phil Wilson, songwriting with Seth Bernard and May Erlewine, and more.
Registration is required. For a full schedule or to register, visit www.blackbirdartstc.com. For details, call 421-8085 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Traverse City — Northwest Michigan Community Action Agency will hold a "Staying Financially Fit" workshop from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, at 3963 Three Mile Road. It is part of a series of six workshops on financial fitness. There is no charge and the public is welcome. To register or for details about future workshops, call 947-3780 or (800) 632-7334, or visit www.nmcaa.net.