Yes, It's a Wonderful Life is a Christmas cliché like countless others. But, be honest, it's the clichés and traditions that make Christmas time so comforting and fun. Like assembling the plastic, pre-decorated tree each year, watching It's a Wonderful Life is an exercise with the same result every time, but you do it anyway and enjoy it, and it simply wouldn't be Christmas without it. This season offers an opportunity for you to enjoy Jimmy Stewart as George Bailey in a much better way: Trade in your bowl of popcorn and the perennial black-and-white TV broadcast for a three-course dinner and live radio broadcast-style performance by the Actors Theater of Minnesota supporting health nonprofit People Incorporated. Proceeds from the performance help the organization maintain residences for their more than 5,000 clients throughout the metro area and fund programs helping mentally ill homeless people. And what better year to learn about coping with the financial and emotional strains of a very un-merry economy at Christmas than this one?
Thu., Dec. 18, 6 p.m., 2008