Thursday, Dec. 22
• Treat yourself to a host of wines, cheeses and Champagnes as Appalachian Vintner (2-B Huntsman Place) hosts a holiday tasting. From the company’s website, “The perfect tasting to find the best wine to accompany your holiday gatherings and the best sparkling wine and Champagne for a memorable New Years toast! Enjoy a local cheese selection from our good friend Victor in Fairview, handmade Pâté (family recipe) and other delectable goodies. Come and see why traditional French Champagne has been the king of sparkling wine for centuries.” 6 p.m. $5.
• Celebrate the winter solstice, the longest night of the year, with a guided 1.25-mile nighttime hike. Bring a flashlight and a warm drink to toast with. Trip departs from Hooker Falls parking lot on DuPont Road in Hendersonville. Info: 692-0385.
• “Make sure to come out to our Slice of Life Holiday Comedy Showcase this Thursday,” reads a post on the weekly series’ Facebook page. “Warm up with laughs and lots of tasty holiday themed snacks. Full bar in the Lounge with local brews and mixed cocktails on special. We have a HUGE line-up for the show and can’t wait to see ya there.” Held at Pulp (103 Hilliard Ave., below the Orange Peel). 9 p.m. $5 for club membership.
• “Howdie everybody! We are Southbound Turnaround,” welcomes a cordial but concise event page for the Southern rock band’s upcoming performance at MoDaddy’s (77 Biltmore Ave.). “Truckers love it!” So if you love truckers, are a trucker or share common interests with truckers, this one’s for you. 9 p.m. $5. The band performs again Friday at 9:30 p.m.
• “In December, Rapid Transit Video (Spencer Cooke & Chris Gallaway) is releasing a new kayaking DVD that has deep roots in WNC,” reads a message on the Our VOICE website. “The DVD is titled Coming Home, and it consists of four short films from kayaking around the world. We’re premiering the project at the Asheville Pizza Company on North Merrimon, and we’d like to get the word out to the local community … One of the most rewarding aspects of one of our previous projects, The Green Race Movie, was the extent to which it connected with local people who don’t kayak, and we’re hopeful that these stories will have broad appeal as well.” 675 Merrimon Ave. 10 p.m. $6 includes a raffle ticket. All proceeds benefit Our VOICE. More on the film here.
Friday, Dec. 23
• Enjoy scenic views, waterfalls and a variety of forest types during a moderate five-mile hike above the N.C. Fish Hatchery. Trip departs from the Pisgah Ranger Station parking lot, 1600 Pisgah Highway. 9:30 a.m. Info: email@example.com.
• “The first thing that hits you when you see Christabel and the Jons is lead singer/songwriter Christa DeCicco’s velvety, effortless voice,” reads the band’s bio. “Sultry, Southern and laid back, her delivery and stage presence often draw comparisons to Billie Holiday, Madeleine Peyroux and Norah Jones. While the similarities are there, she’s also developed a sound that’s all her own, with earthy melodies that glide along with her 1950s Silvertone archtop guitar. Currently touring the country from coast to coast, she is quickly solidifying her reputation as one of the country’s finest up-and-coming folk/jazz singers. Multi-instrumentalist Seth Hopper adds colorful ambiance to the songs with his virtuoso assortment of violin, mandolin, trumpet and accordion. The snappy rhythm section is led by Jon Whitlock on drums with Chris Zuhr on upright bass. The group mixes their original songs with thoughtfully arranged jazz standards, Western swing and classic country for a sound they call ‘Tennessee swing.’” The band visits Highland Brewing Company (12 Old Charlotte Highway #H) for its annual holiday show. 6 p.m. Free.
• “With jubilant vigor that spills from the stage to the streets, Firecracker Jazz Band revitalizes the energy of the roots of jazz,” claims the band’s website. “In paying homage to the pioneers of early 20th century jazz, including that of Dixieland and New Orleans, the Firecracker Jazz Band carries the torch that was once lit by such greats as Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong and Bix Beiderbecke.” Take a trip back to the genre’s heyday when the band performs at Jack of the Wood (95 Patton Ave.). 9:30 p.m.
• From Pisgah Brewing Company‘s event page, “Ice Monkey is: Jason Cope (Jamey Johnson and Secret Sisters), who has been on the road for a long time selling out venues and touring with Willie Nelson, Kid Rock, Sheryl Crowe and countless others; Josh Day (Maroon 5 and Sara Bareilles), who is in constant demand as a studio drummer; Aaron Woody Wood, who plays, records and is a gifted songwriter, singer and guitar player; and Sam Earnhardt, who has been playing out sparingly and writing songs for his third CD.
“These guys are busy with worldwide tours, so playing as Ice Monkey is a way for them to let their hair down and just enjoy playing music for music’s sake in front of friends and family. There won’t be a setlist, but expect to hear some originals and favorites by Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, Black Sabbath, Lynyrd Skynrd and other good country and high-energy rock ‘n’ roll! These guys are world-class musicians, and it’s a treat to hear them play in a casual, relaxed environment.” 150 Eastside Drive, Black Mountain. 10 p.m. $10/$12.
Saturday, Dec. 24
• Take in the sounds of the holidays as White Horse Black Mountain (105C Montreat Road, Black Mountain) hosts a free Christmas Eve concert, featuring Kim Hughes, Bob Hinkle, The Wilderness Act and more. 7 p.m.