Spike the eggnog and break out the mistletoe. The holidays are officially upon us, and the local nightlife scene is offering plenty of ways to avoid cabin fever this season. Whether you and your friends prefer going yarmulke to yarmulke in a dreidel battle or rocking around the Christmas tree at a neighborhood bar crawl, here are our picks for the best adults-only holiday events this year.
12/2: Mahaffey’s Winter Wonderland Block Party
Mahaffey’s is taking its Breakfast with Santa tradition to a new level this year, with an all-day block party featuring live music, face-painters, Flying Dog beers, and brunch fare until 2 p.m. Plus, bring a toy donation to take a photo with Santa for free. Mahaffey’s Pub, 2706 Dillon St., 10 a.m.-9 p.m., 410-276-9899, Free.
12/7: Monument Lighting After Party at the Marketplace
After watching 16,000 LEDs light up the Washington Monument, mosey over to Mount Vernon Marketplace for this holiday party featuring live music by DJ Gray and specials from all of the food hall’s vendors. Mount Vernon Marketplace, 520 Park Ave., 6-11 p.m., 443-796-7393.
12/7: Monument Lighting Party with Wight Tea Co.
There’s no better way to warm up after the Monument Lighting than with a toasty hot toddy. To celebrate Mt. Vernon’s most festive night of the year, Wet City is teaming up with Baltimore’s own Wight Tea Company to offer a specialty hot toddy menu all night long. Wet City, 223 W. Chase St., 5 p.m.-2 a.m., 443-873-6699.
12/7: Holidays in Hampden
Birroteca is teaming up with Dogfish Head Brewery to host this holiday get-together benefitting Toys for Tots. Bring in an unwrapped toy or canned good to spin a prize wheel while sipping Dogfish brews like the 61 Minutes IPA and sought-after Midas Touch beer, wine, and mead hybrid. Birroteca, 1520 Clipper Mill Road, 5-8 p.m., 443-708-1934.
12/7-12/21: Full Tilt Paints the Town
Throughout December, the team from Full Tilt Brewing will be popping up at bars around the city and enlisting artists to paint the scene at each event. Patrons who purchase a Full Tilt beer at the holiday events can give their information to the bar, and come back to receive a print of the evening's portrait from the artist once it's finished. Catch the Full Tilt team at Alonso's on December 7, Parts & Labor on December 9, The Brass Tap and Taps Fill Station on December 15, and Mahaffey's on December 21. Multiple locations, Times vary.
12/8: Awkward Sex and the City Presents: Jingle Balls
Lauded by the likes of The Washington Post and The New York Times, this adults-only comedy show brings together five New York City storytellers to recount their most embarrassing holiday-themed sexual experiences. Be sure to arrive early to snap selfies in front of a festive photo wall before the show starts. Creative Alliance, 3134 Eastern Ave., 8 p.m., $15-18, 410-276-1651
12/12: Ugly Sweater Party at The Brass Tap
This Midtown beer bar is hosting its first-ever ugly sweater party, featuring Sierra Nevada IPAs and plenty of other seasonal brews to go around. The Brass Tap at the Fitzgerald, 1205 W. Mt Royal Ave., 6-9 p.m., 888-901-2337.
12/13: Hannukah Brew Ha Ha
On the second night of Hanukkah, hang out with Charm City Tribe at this fifth annual event complete with Union Craft beers, dreidel battles, live music spun by DJ Daniel Biltmore, crispy latkes, and traditional sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) from Center Cut Doughnuts. Union Craft Brewing, 1700 Union Ave., 7-10 p.m., 410-464-0290, $18-23.
12/14: Second Annual Holiday Food Drive
Trade in canned goods for raffle tickets at this festive fête hosted by Southern Provisions in Canton. Aside from featuring live music by The Honey Extractors until close, the bar will offer whiskey specials, an ugly sweater contest, and a photo booth on the second floor. Southern Provisions, 3000 O’Donnell St., 7 p.m.-2 a.m., 410-675-4029
12/16: Baltimore Santa Crawl
Dress in your most festive get-up (think tinsel and turtlenecks) and bounce around Broadway Square at this Fells Point pub crawl. Spirited specials such as $3 rail drinks and $4 holiday shots will be offered at participating bars including Todd Conner’s, Dogwatch Tavern, Abbey Burger Bistro, and The Point. Register at Fells Point Tavern, 1606 Thames St., 1-9 p.m., $20
12/16: The Ugly Sweater Run
The merriest 5K of the year is back benefitting One Warm Coat—which donates winter clothing to those in need. Lace up your shoes and don your vintage knits to run around the city and enjoy a post-race party with warm cocktails, inflatable snow globes, and a massive fireplace. Rash Field, 201 Key Highway, 9 a.m., $65
12/16: 2nd Annual Ugly Sweater Bar Stroll
Throw on your most festive get-up for this South Baltimore bar crawl that begins at Delia Foley’s and travels to neighboring spots Hair of the Dog (formerly No Idea Tavern), Das Bier Haus, and Don’t Know Tavern. A $10 wristband includes raffle entry and drink specials at each spot. Delia Foley’s, 1439 S. Charles St., 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $10.
12/19: A John Waters Christmas
Snag a seat to see Baltimore's cult-classic comedian perform his critically-acclaimed one-man show. Expect to hear holiday horror stories and plenty of other cringeworthy tales for the Christmas corrupted. Baltimore Soundstage, 124 Market Pl. 8 p.m. $44-49.50. 410-244-0057.
12/20: Holiday Karaoke Extravaganza
Warm up your vocal chords and belt aloud to your favorite Christmas tunes at Mount Vernon Marketplace’s karaoke shindig and ugly sweater contest. The event will also feature the food hall’s third annual “Nog it Off” competition to see which stall’s eggnog recipe reigns supreme. Mount Vernon Marketplace, 520 Park Ave., 7-11 p.m., 443-796-7393.
12/21: Absolut-ly Ugly Sweater Party at Ryder’s
This Upper Fells Point hangout is getting creative with its ugly sweater shenanigans, raffling off festive gift baskets at the end of the night. Every guest wearing a sweater will receive two raffle tickets, and additional tickets will be given out with every Absolut drink purchased. Ryder’s, 1901 Gough St., 6 p.m.- 12 a.m., 443-869-2439
12/22: Ugly Sweater Party at Grand Central
Don your most unappealing knits for this all-out bash, which rewards a first-place winner with a $75 bar tab and a $25 tab for second place. Grand Central Nightclub, 1001 N. Charles St., 9 p.m.-2 a.m., Free
*If you’re in search of the perfect ugly sweater to sport at the aforementioned events, the city’s famed Mr. Trash Wheel has got you covered. Proceeds from these “trashy” crewnecks will support Waterfront Partnership’s loyal efforts to clean up the harbor.