Party while you Give: Fun and Rockin’ Holiday Drives in LA

Everyone has a special moment when it really starts to feel like Christmas. It might be shopping on Black Friday, baking cookies, or buying the tree. For me, it is that magical moment when I am taken unawares by a phalanx of motorcycles zooming by carrying giant teddy bears on the back. That is truly the spirit of Christmas. Here is some info on the local Harley Davidson Toy Run as well as some other fun food and toy drives. Most them request a new, unwrapped toy for entrance. Often kids from ages 8 – 15 are overlooked, so you might consider donating action figures, books, board games and Legos that are age-appropriate for them.

Friday, December 6, 2019

Krampusnacht at the Red Lion Tavern

Sure, it’s not as elaborate as the annual Krampusnacht celebrations at Alpine Village and DTLA, but this celebration of Santa’s menacing counterpart who punishes the naughty children happening Friday at the Silver Lake stalwart, Red Lion Tavern will have plenty of beer and sausages as well as a real, live Krampus! You might get hit with a switch by the evil Krampus, but St. Nick will be there to ward them off. LA Beat writer Tequila Mockingbird suggests you order the goulash, or if you go to Groupon you can get a deal for a sausage dinner. And the jukebox is awesome. There will be drink specials and an ugly sweater contest. Or wear your finest Dirndl or Krampus horns! The toys will go to Marines Toys for Tots.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

9th Annual Counterfeit Presents Holiday Toy Drive

San Pedro’s bass/drum duo, The Wrinkling Brothers, will be playing Di Piazzas in Long Beach this Saturday. The Wrinkling Brothers feature George Hurley of the Minutemen/fIREHOSE, and Joe Dean, of Nostradumass, with “continual special guest,” Vince Meghrouni of the Atomic Sherpas on Saxophone. Filling out the bill are El Queda, A Broken Line, and A Boy & His Tiger. Plus you can grab a cocktail, classic pizzas, burgers and pasta. Try the deep fried artichoke hearts! Doors at 7 PM, Wrinkling brothers go on at 8 PM. All toys will be donated to Love in the Mirror.

Punxmas Toy Drive

Toxic Kat Productions presents their annual holiday toy drive with nine incredible bands at The Dollhouse in Anaheim. Starting at 6:30 Pm with the Time Kats, the Shubees close the night with the last time slot at 12:14 AM. Don’t miss the Ravens Moreland Band at 11:00 PM. Bring an unwrapped, new toy for ages 0-18. All items will be donated to the Orangewood Children’s Home. Money and gift cards are not accepted at the door.
no toy no entry.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Wild Bunch Car Club/ Valley Relics Museum 11th Annual Toy Drive

If you like BBQ, cool cars and retro signage, the Wild Bunch Car Club and Valley Relics Museum in Chatsworth will be holding their annual toy drive on Sunday from 12 noon until 4 pm. Please bring a new, unwrapped gift, gift card or cash for admittance to the museum. And purchase delicious BBQ from the Burnt to a Crisp BBQ Truck.

Congressman Adam Schiff’s Holiday Party to Support the L.A. Food Bank.

Join the congressman and his staff in celebrating the holiday season and collecting non-perishable food for local food pantries from 5 PM until 7 PM. at the De Luxe Banquet Hall in Burbank. You can easily hit both the Valley Relics event and this one. Staples such as beans, rice, pasta tuna, peanut butter and canned foods would be most appreciated. This event is free, and all are welcome. Refreshments will be served. So yeah, this event isn’t as wild and crazy as the others, but I chose it because I can’t wait to shake the hand of the man who is helping to end the nation’s tyranny. I was so proud of the way Schiff represented us on the Hill. Buy that man a drink! Buy him a car! An island! OK, he can’t legally accept those things, but the sentiment is real.

Thursday, December 12. 2019

Sleigh Bells on Spring at Preux & Proper

Preux & Proper, our favorite New Orleans joint that’s not actually in New Orleans, is hosting “Sleigh Bells on Spring,” a month-long holiday celebration. The place will be outrageously decorated and there will be special holiday dishes and cocktails, plus fun activities like making gingerbread houses and celebrating Festivus.

But the event that caught my eye is happening on the 12th. Ilegal Mezcal will be sponsoring a Holiday Tattoo Pop-Up on the Balcony with Julio the Monster! Yes! Mezcal and free tattoos! They are only tattooing for three hours, so get there early to sign up, and it is normally expected that you tip the tattoo artist in this kind of deal. The tattoo flash will feature both Christmas and Ilegal Mezcal images to choose from. No hand, neck, feet, or face tattoos. So don’t ask me why I have Rudolph drinking mezcal on my butt next time you see me. They didn’t say no butt tattoos!

The event is supporting NKLA, an initiative led by Best Friends Animal Society to end the killing of homeless pets in L.A. city shelters. All month long, guests are encouraged to bring any new, unused a pet food, treats, toys, paper towels, blankets, litter, or grooming supplies to Preux & Proper and be gifted a Complimentary Cup of Cheer!

Friday, December 13, 2019

Midnight Ridazz All-City Toy Ride

Now in its 13th year, this toy drive is organized by the 1300 member party crew known as  Midnight Ridazz. Feeder rides from all over the city will converge on Olvera Street. You have to have a bike, obviously, and bring one new, unwrapped toy to your feeder ride of choice! After the meetup, follow the ride to a secret location for an after party for a night of music, and dancing. Ride On!

 Valley feeder ride

Sunset Triangle feeder

East Hollywood feeder ride

Sunday, December 15, 2019. 

Harley Davidson of Glendale Toy Run

If you prefer a ride with a little more horsepower, Glendale’s Harley Davidson will be kicking off the 32nd Annual LA Toy Run. Registration is at 9 AM, kickstands up at 11 AM and arrival at the Ronald McDonald House at 12 Noon to hand out toys to the kids. This is the only toy drive that allows you to actually see the kids light up with glee, rather than the impersonal experience of dropping a toy truck into a box. All motorcycles are welcome, so you can show up on a sports bike and not get any shit. Because, as they told The LA Beat, it’s about the kids–not the bikes.

December 21, 2019

Ham and Eggs Tavern’s 3rd Annual Toy Drive

At this downtown tavern’s annual toy drive, a new, unwrapped toy gets you free PBR, Purgatory pizza, and a raffle ticket. Additional tickets are only a buck. Raffle prizes include bottles of booze, Clippers tickets, vinyl records, and more! John Vu will be on the decks, and Rusty and his band will be playing live Latin music.

Elise Thompson

About Elise Thompson

Born and raised in the great city of Los Angeles, this food, culture and music-loving punk rock angeleno wants to turn you on to all that is funky, delicious and weird in the city. While Elise holds down the fort, her adventurous alter ego Kiki Maraschino is known to roam the country in search of catfish.
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