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This final week of the holiday countdown, stop by BICKETT GALLERY to see ELEVEN ARTISTS, an annual collection of new works at affordable prices. The $400 price limit makes it a little easier to find something for your art-lover, and you can also just come in for some respite from the bustle. Order up a glass of winter cheer from the art bar and take in Luke Miller Buchanan's striking abstracts of Raleigh landmarks, stunning silver jewelry from Johanna Gollberg, and works by China's celebrated Wang Ying and local legends Bill Hickman and Anthony Uliski. The show runs through December 27. Visit for details. --Virginia Daniel

KWANZAA, an African-American and Pan-African holiday celebrating family, community and culture has some creative and committed local followers. Durham's HAYTI HERITAGE CENTER hosts a full seven-day celebration every evening from Monday, Dec. 26, through Saturday, Dec. 31. Live performers--including hip-hop artist ZAYD MALIK , musician Bradley Simmons and his ELEMENTS OF PERCUSSION ensemble, COLLAGE DANCE COMPANY, and poet KIM ARRINGTON--celebrate the day's principle and lead a 7:30 p.m. candle-lighting ceremony at the Hayti. Then at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 1, the big party starts at the Durham Armory as CHUCK DAVIS AND THE AFRICAN AMERICAN DANCE ENSEMBLE lead the 20th Annual KwanzaaFest. All events are free and open to the public. For more info, call 683-1709 or go to

Back in the mid-'80s, original Red Clay Rambler JIM WATSON was pretty much making a living at the Cave, playing solo or with bluegrassers the Green Level Entertainers or alongside Bill and Libby Hicks in an old-time band. "So why not add one more appearance to the schedule?" someone wondered aloud, and the first Jim Watson Christmas show came to pass at the Cave in 1986. The 20TH ANNUAL CHRISTMAS SHOW, on December 22 at 9 p.m., will be quite a bit like the inaugural gathering. The first and third sets will feature Christmas songs from Watson, but it's the middle set that gives the show its special flavor. That's when the sheet music gets passed out, and the audience commences to caroling. Watson is starting one new tradition this year: The night after the Cave show, he's taking the enterprise to the Masonic Lodge on King Street in Hillsborough. --Rick Cornell

If bar fights were fought by wit, the waging of words and the width of a good-natured smirk, TERRY ANDERSON wouldn't need his four-piece OLYMPIC ASS-KICKIN' TEAM for support on show nights. A former Fabulous Knob and current Vibe Killer, Anderson lays the whip of narrative wit to love and all the (un)happy accidents that arrive from it, and he won't pull any punches on Christmas Day, with his fifth annual ROCK 'N' ROLL BIRTHDAY BASH AT THE POUR HOUSE at 8 p.m. "I realized kind of late in my life that the reason I wasn't remembering all the lyrics was alcohol. So now, I just don't drink at all during the day if I have a gig that night," he says. "But one year it was my 45th birthday, so I did pass out Colt 45 to everybody." Terry Anderson ain't no Jesus, but they have the same birthday . --Grayson Currin

BETYE SAAR and her daughters LEZLEY and ALISON SAAR are artists with familial imaginations. FAMILY LEGACIES, an exhibition at the ACKLAND ART MUSEUM at UNC, features these African-American artists' mixed-media works, much of it created from everyday objects. Sculptures, collages and other assemblages explore the themes of identity, race, gender and family. Wednesday, Dec. 28, is Ackland's COMMUNITY DAY, when visitors of all ages can learn how to create an oral history, make their own works of art, and go on interactive tours of the exhibition. For more info, visit or call 966-5736. Free admission.

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Latest in Best Bets

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