The season twinkles with tradition, but secular celebrations also light up cold, dark December nights. Put the gift-wrapping on hold for a night or two: This extended holiday weekend is meant for weirdness.

A Night for Jack: Remembering Jack Rose. Though not holy in the conventional sense, a wintry night recalling Philadelphia's pastoral/primitive guitar great Jack Rose is a religious, heartwarming, soul-stirring experience.

On the fifth anniversary of his death, guitarists Daniel Bachman and Chris Forsyth, among others (including DJ/friend Ian Nagoski) will celebrate Rose's music, legacy, and open-tuning stylings by covering the likes of "Kensington Blues" and talking about this cherished musician.

8 p.m. Friday. The Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St. Tickets: Free. Information: 215-573-3234,

Blue Maxx Goat's Blue Christmas. Philadelphia rapper Maxx Stoyanoff-Williams is known as the man behind Philly's first live hip-hop act the Goats (tied with the Roots) and the big-band ensemble Black Landlord. But the man sometimes known as Blue Maxx Goat is one heck of a crooner and will get to prove so Friday night at Bourbon & Branch when he performs in the Northern Liberties bar's Christmas pageant with the Paper Shakers within the context of the variety show. Stoyanoff-Williams performs his original seasonal song "Office Party," along with other holiday favorites.

Friday, 8 p.m. Bourbon & Branch, 705 N. Second St. Tickets: $7. Information:

Secret Pants presents "Cuban Tinsel Crisis": The 5th Annual Yuletide Variety Extravaganza! One of Philadelphia's premier sketch comedy troupes, Secret Pants, marries the tales of Fidel Castro and Father Christmas into one big ball of wax, candy canes, and pinecones with the help of longtime local prop comic the Legendary Wid; sideshow artist Reggie Bügmüncher; stripteaser Randi Warhol; game-show host Joe Moore; sketch comics the Incredible Shrinking Matt & Jacquie; stand-up comedians the Not for Nothin' Podcast, and seasonal sounds from Lazy Gaga.

9 p.m. Tuesday. Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave. Tickets: $10. Information: 215-739-9684,

The 7 Fishes Variations. Every foodie knows the story of the Italian Christmas Eve celebration of the Feast of the Seven Fishes. What used to be a housebound dinner party, where different mothers cooked different fish variations (smelts are a must, then anchovies, clams, whiting, sardines, lobster, cod, eels, squid, octopus, shrimp, mussels) has become a task taken on by Italian restaurants across Philly. Davio's does it on 17th Street as does Pepperoncini in Conshohocken and most of East Passyunk Avenue's Italian hot spots. Now, other nations have gotten in on the act. Bistro St. Tropez' five-course degustation menu offers Provençal-accented French fish options (Shemogue oysters, salmon, scallops) as part of its Christmas Eve dining experience.

Davio's Philadelphia, 111 S. 17th St., 215-563-4810,

Pepperoncini, 72 Poplar St., Conshohocken, 610-941-7783, Bistro St. Tropez, fourth floor, Market Place Design Center Building, 2400 Market St. 215-569-9269,

Rising Pulse Productions' first annual Festivus. "A Festivus for the rest of us," the fake holiday made famous on Seinfeld, has shown strong legs since the 1997 episode when Frank Costanza (Jerry Stiller) claimed to have invented it. Rising Pulse Productions' mixed bag of holiday music features reggae, rock, and skronk from members of Jah People, West Philadelphia Orchestra, Circadian Rhythms, and iNFiNiEN.

8 p.m. Wednesday. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St. Tickets: $8. Information: 215-291-4919,

RonBomb's Punk Rock Pollyanna Xmas Party and A Fistful of Sugar's Holiday Fistival for Philabundance. The Italian Market performance space Connie's Ric Rac hosts two back-to-back weird holiday punk rock-based events; the first with NYC's loud Wonderboy, Cheerbleeders, Victory Boy, Suicideloop, Beer Me, and an acoustic set from Roy Orbitron; the second with the always-jazzy string and accordion ensemble A Fistful of Sugar and its friends in Philly's noisy Cheap Dinosaurs, Sweetbriar Rose, Cask, and more - all playing for the good cause of holiday meals through Philabundance.

7 p.m. Dec. 26, admission $5; 1 p.m. Dec. 27, $18. Connie's Ric Rac, 1132 S. Ninth St. Information: 215-279-7587,