Tired of the same ol‘ “Santa Claus is coming to town” schtick? Then Candlelight Pavilion’s production of Christmas Memories might be the thing to un-Grinch the Yuletide clichés you’ve been dodging all month. A truly home-grown creation, this is a story that has its roots in the true-life experiences of Candlelight Artistic Director John LaLonde (who also happens to be the writer and director for Memories). The story, set in 1948, revolves around Katie Walters’ attempts to have a Christmas memory, even though every year her parents fly overseas to help Bob Hope (see, I told you this was set in the ’40s) entertain our troops. Luckily, she gets some help from St. Mary’s school (LaLonde’s father was a janitor at a church and school in Niagara Falls) and the (literally) Big Man himself. Clear your ears and your pipes—what, you’re not gonna sing along to “Ave Maria” or “A Time to Be Jolly/Sleigh Ride”—and prepare for some Santastic times. No lump of coal here.
Christmas Memories at Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre, 455 W. Foothill Blvd., Claremont, (909) 626-1254; www.candlelightpavilion.com. Thru Dec. 26. Tickets $48-$68.