LarryvilleLife’s Picks: Early holiday edition featuring Ashley Davis, Crock Pot Luck, a big band tradition at Jazzhaus and ‘A Christmas Story’

Season’s greetings, constant readers! This week we’re focusing on a few traditional holiday events, a few off-the-radar events, and a few of our personal holiday favorites. Have you ever seen a more culturally-jampacked Saturday??

Ashley Davis: The Christmas Sessions, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday at Lied Center

Kansas-born and internationally renowned, Ashley Davis returns to Lawrence this week for her annual show. Actually: shows. An extra has been added since last year’s event sold out quickly.

Davis melds Celtic and Appalachian influences into her sound, and the Facebook event page promises that she’ll be playing plenty of material from both her new Christmas album and old favorites from “Songs of the Celtic Winter.”

Be smart and purchase tickets in advance via the Lied Center. For more on Davis and her new album, check out Joanna Hlavacek’s Out & About blog on Lcom.

America’s Got Spelling and Crock Pot Luck Dinner, 7 p.m. Saturday at Frank’s North Star

This is surely the coziest little cultural event of the week. Guests are invited to bring their favorite slow-cooked meals to Frank’s (can someone please bring chicken and dumplings for us?) and then participate in a spelling bee at 9 p.m. hosted by LFK teacher/music guru Jon Harrison. Well, why not? Surely drunk people trying to spell big words will be quite entertaining.

This isn’t a holiday event necessarily, but it sounds pretty merry to us, and we can easily spell PBR, which will surely be flowing during the festivities.

Visit the Facebook event page here, which really needs more guests. The event page photo (above) is pretty clever, don’t you think?

Free State Brewing 4th Annual Holiday Show (featuring the Phantastics), 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Granada

This holiday bash is free (if you’re over 21) and features the stellar funk groove of KC’s Phantastics, a band that impressed most of the population of LFK over the summer when they opened up the epic free George Clinton show outside the Arts Center.

LFK’s Carswell and Hope kick off the evening at 8:30.

The Facebook event page is here.

I Heart Local Music Showcase: Bummer, Stiff Middle Fingers, Vedette, 10 p.m. Saturday at Replay

Our hard-working friends at I Heart Local Music are throwing their last bash of the year on Saturday. Don’t expect a light-hearted holiday romp, however. The fans of these three rowdy acts are far more naughty than nice. We predict a holiday mosh pit.

The Facebook event page contains memorable descriptions of each band, ending with a promise that the show will “light your crotch on fire.” Merry Christmas!

And remember that you can always access the prolific I Heart Local Music directly at their website in 2016.

Jazzhaus Big Band Christmas Formal, 10 p.m. Saturday at Jazzhaus

But perhaps you DON’T want your crotch lit on fire while gyrating to the Devil’s music? Then find yourself a nice date, get dressed up in elegant fashion, and hit the dance floor at the Jazzhaus to the smooth sounds of a 17-piece big band orchestra playing jazz standards and holiday favorites.

Last year was our first time attending this long-standing tradition. Verdict: delightful! Make sure to chat up some of the folks who have been attending for many years. And if you’re worried about the dress code, don’t. They’ll let you in whether or not you are dressed to the nines.

The Facebook event page is here.

‘A Christmas Story’ screenings, 4 and 7 p.m. Sunday at Liberty Hall

Yes, you’ve seen “A Christmas Story” 117 times and it is almost certainly currently playing on television even as we write this (and at whatever time you happen to be reading this). Even so, movies are a communal experience, especially beloved cultural touchstones. Come out. Be with people. Laugh. Try to avoid getting your tongue stuck to a pole if it’s cold and snowy outside after the film.

[Side note: we recently purchased a miniature leg lamp at an LFK yard sale].

Find more info at the Liberty Hall website.

We hope you’ve enjoyed these last few months of cultural guidance, since we will be retiring this column from after the new year. But don’t worry. We vow to remain ever-vigilant and helpful if you follow us via Twitter @LarryvilleLife. We’ll be back for two more columns of Christmas and New Year’s picks.