Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Build your own lightsaber, check out holiday decorations at the zoo, and more.

five reasons to leave the house this weekend

Photo courtesy of Zoo New England

Santa Saturdays at the Franklin Park Zoo

Meet Santa at the Franklin Park Zoo, where he’ll be waiting inside the Tropical Forest Building, ready for photo ops and story time. There will also be special holiday crafting and holiday-themed enrichment with ring-tailed lemurs, whom zookeepers will encourage to use natural behaviors and abilities to interact with their environments. In the spirit of the season, all of the exhibits will be festively decorated. While there, be on the lookout for Franklin Park Zoo’s newest resident: Azize, the western lowland gorilla baby born earlier this year.

Free with admission, Saturday, December 19, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Franklin Park Zoo, One Franklin Park Rd., Boston,

five reasons to leave the house this weekend

Photograph by Patricia Hurley, Trinity Church in the City of Boston

Candlelight Carols

Celebrate Christmas early with the Choirs of Trinity Church, whose carols, anthems, and candlelight have been a Boston holiday tradition since 1909. Those wishing to donate to Trinity Church can also attend the annual Candlelight Carols Benefit Service the following night.

Free, Saturday, December 19, 4 and 7 p.m., $45-$110 for benefit service, Sunday, December 20, 4 p.m., Trinity Church, 206 Clarendon St.,

The Slutcracker

The Tchaikovsky-scored original with added innuendo, The Slutcracker is a burlesque twist on a holiday classic. Featuring ballet dancers, hula-hoopers, belly dancers, and more, it’s a family un-friendly holiday tradition you don’t want to miss.

$21, Thursday, December 17, Friday, December 18 and Saturday, December 19, 8 p.m., Sunday, December 20, 2 and 8 p.m., Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square, Somerville,

five reasons to leave the house this weekend

New England Outerwear / Photo by Melissa Ostrow

Newbury Block Party

The Newbury Collection’s inaugural holiday pop-up festival showcases retailers catering to all your winter needs. Check out New England Outerwear’s pop-up shop, where they’ll be holding a “made to order” event, or join Parlor Skis and their friends to explore fly-fishing gear, skateboards, and more. Then, finish off with some oysters at Island Creek Oysters’ first-ever pickup counter concept in Boston. Running Fridays through Sundays until January 3, it’s an event carefully tailored for all your New Englander needs.

Free to attend, Friday, December 18, and Saturday, December 19, 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Sunday, December 20, 12-7 p.m., 119-144 Newbury St., Boston,

five reasons to leave the house this weekend

Photo courtesy of Parts and Crafts

Light Saber Build Party

In the spirit of the new Star Wars movie, Parts and Crafts is once again holding its popular lightsaber-building activity to fundraise for their nonprofit. As a bonus, the activity culminates in a lightsaber battle in a darkened basement. Can’t make it to the event? Don’t worry: Parts and Crafts will also sell lightsaber making kits online and in their store. This new project, called “One Lightsaber Per Child,” is what Dina Gjersten from Parts and Crafts calls “buy two, get one,” where for every lightsaber kit purchased, Parts and Crafts will bring a free lightsaber kit to lower income kids who cannot afford their own. Prepare to defeat Darth Vader in the most charitable way possible.

$30 per family, $10 for each additional lightsaber, Saturday, December 19, 1 p.m., 577 Somerville Ave, Somerville,