;;Rockapella It's no coincidence that the five-man Rockapella group, aka the "kings of contemporary a cappella," finish their holiday concert tour here. Almost all of the current members hail from Orlando, Tampa and Winter Haven (Scott Leonard, high tenor; Kevin Wright, tenor; George Baldi, bassist; John K. Brown, tenor), save one New Yorker (Jeff Thacher, vocal percussionist). There's been a complete turnover of membership since the founders put the project together in the mid-'80s, but Rockapella's smooth sound has remained the same: rock, soul and R&B performed sans musical instrumentation. It's a tossup as to which ditty placed them in the public consciousness: the TV theme song from Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? or the Folgers TV commercial. Ringtones from the former can be downloaded from Rockapella Mobile, and the latter can be found on YouTube. This show, however, is a blend of traditional Christmas tunes and group originals. (7 p.m. at the Plaza Theatre; $30; 407-228-1220)


;Santa Helpers There's truth in the old adage that you have to give in order to receive, but too many people shortchange the system these days. Help to restore faith in the belief that goodness lies within us all at this meet-up organized by the Catholic Charities of Central Florida Inc. Volunteers are still needed in the Family Assistance Department to sort, stock and label packages for delivery to families on the organization's Christmas Project list. You won't walk away with anything except a warm feeling; one size fits all. To volunteer at other organizations, go to ;(9 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Catholic Charities of Central Florida; call 407-658-1818 to register; sign up online


;High School Musical Cracking through the protective sphere of Disney's tween-tastic empire can be difficult from our over-30 perch, but suffice it to say that High School Musical is a youth-pervasive, feel-good phenomenon. What is it? Well, it's a television movie/DVD that's less sexually antagonistic than, say, My So-Called Life and more musical than, say, Cop Rock. If Grease didn't include that crotchy door-slam, those Newton-John breasts or a "Beauty School Dropout" then it might be High School Musical. The song "We're All in This Together" isn't a far pop-rock throw from "We Go Together," after all. Playfully repackaged as a concert tour — probably because the album hit Billboard's No. 1 spot in March — most of the original cast has re-formed (lead Zac Efron is in Canada filming Hairspray) to re-enact the inspiring journey of Troy and Gabriella. It sounds like a load of fun (Disney Channel commercials aired throughout), but if you attend, be warned: If you're over 17 and not a campy queen, you might just be a pervert. (7 p.m. at Amway Arena; $37.50-$57.50; 407-849-2020)



;Cassadaga Spiritualist Camp For an alternative take on the spirituality of the season, spend a day stimulating that third eye at our favorite psychic community just north of town, Cassadaga. Start with a guided historic tour (1 p.m.-3 p.m., $15) of the camp that was founded in 1895 by George Colby, who was directed to the property by a nonliving guide named Seneca. Later, hit the well-known healing services (2 p.m.-4 p.m., donation) that could bring you a message from the beyond. When dark falls, it's time for the Orb Photography Tour (7 p.m., $25) of energy hot spots, for which you are encouraged to bring your own camera to see what develops. (sign up until 5 p.m. at Cassadaga Spiritualist Camp Bookstore, Cassadaga; free-$25; 386-228-2880)


;Osteen Bike, Paddle and More It's two days before Christmas and all through the house, everybody's out shopping destroying their credit. No, it doesn't rhyme, but it's true. You, on the other hand, are looking for something else to do. May we suggest thumbing your nose at the malls entirely and spending a day on the St. Johns River? You might just have the place to yourself. Wilderness Trekkers, a nonprofit group full of people who like to thumb their noses at the malls, is organizing the Osteen Bike, Paddle and More. The biking part is a 15-mile ride on pavement through the countryside in and around Osteen, some mighty fine territory. It's the paddle part of the equation that got our attention. Launch your canoe or kayak and off you go. "It's beautiful," says organizer Neill Beavers. "The river is probably 50-75 feet wide there and it's thinly populated. It's one of the prettiest sections of the St. Johns River." Best part? After the paddle there's going to be some ol'-timey riverbank sittin', and maybe even a little Christmas cheer. Bring your own canoe or kayak. ;(Meet-up 10 a.m at the vacant lot across the street from the Lemon Bluff Campground, 949 Lemon Bluff Road, Osteen; free; 407-927-7974)


;Alan Singley & Pants Machine Lovingkindness by Alan Singley and his band Pants Machine is making ripples in the Pacific Northwest, but Singley is actually an Orlando export who's home for the holidays. If the bands Missouri Loves Company and Pilots vs. Aeroplanes ring a bell, then you've likely heard Singley's voice. His current work tends toward piano-wafted bedroom-folk that doesn't shy away from being cute. There seems to be irony in the mix, though, so the result is more endearing than annoying. His whimsical music sometimes lacks focus, but his clumsy sense of innocence is as charming as a child in glasses. Fans of the Post Records scene will delight in his cheerily idiosyncratic fare. (9:30 p.m. at Stardust Video & Coffee; free; 407-623-3393)



;Christmas Eve Open House at Morse museum This annual tradition is nothing fancy, but the Tiffany stained glass that fills the Morse Museum is wondrously so. Still, no matter the elegance of his collection, late founder Hugh McKean was a simple man who believed that his lovelies were to be shared at no cost with the people in his community. So several times a year, including Christmas Eve, the museum opens its doors and welcomes visitors, and throws in music by the Raintree Chamber Players. Let go of yourself and allow the arts to awaken your soul, but watch your step — if something breaks, you could never pay for it. As part of a new tradition the museum also is open 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 22, with music by Beautiful Music Flute Trio; no charge. (1 p.m.-4 p.m. at Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park; free; 407-645-5311)



;;High Art Poor Ally Sheedy. She was pegged forever as the Pixy-Stix-sandwich-eating, pimento-loaf-slice-hurling bag-lady-in-waiting from The Breakfast Club, and all the Maid to Orders in the world weren't going to change that. Then, 13 long Lifetime Movie–filled years later, Lisa Cholodenko cast her as a strung-out lesbian photographer in High Art, and she stabbed a dirty needle through her unshakable teen persona. Sheedy's character is a thinly disguised take on Nan Goldin (The Ballad of Sexual Dependency), the lyrical chronicler of artists/junkies/drag queens/misfits who turned her back on the art world in the '70s, only to enjoy a brief vogue after being "rediscovered" in the heroin-chic '90s, and Sheedy inhabits it fiercely. Her reawakening from the drug cocoon, in which her seduction of a trembling, milky-skinned Radha Mitchell leads her to begin making art again, is a quiet triumph. Director/writer Cholodenko might seem to be something of a dyke auteur, each of her films (Cavedweller, Laurel Canyon, the requisite episode of The L Word) having lesbian elements or subplots, but her real subject is the artist's struggle — the duel to the death between domesticity and the muse. High Art screens at the Enzian as part of their Sundance Film Series on the day after Christmas — we can't think of a better antidote to the enforced family-friendly atmosphere of the holidays. (9:30 p.m. at Enzian Theater, Maitland; $5; 407-629-0054)

;; Contributors: Amber Foster, Bao Le-Huu, Billy Manes, Lindy T. Shepherd, Bob Whitby and Jessica Bryce Young.



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