Jan. 7-12: If you haven't made plans for dinner yet, consider San Diego. From Jan. 7 to 12, it's Restaurant Week, and more than 120 establishments will participate, including the Marine Room in La Jolla, called by Frommer's San Diego's "top 'special occasion' restaurant" and sophisticated Addison in Del Mar Heights. Foodies can have a three-course dinner for $30 to $40 per person.
Jan. 26-Feb. 4: Winter Carnival gets the resort town's blood racing with snowshoe golf, tube races, a polar plunge, as well as a wine festival, the state snow-sculpting championships, sleigh rides, a masquerade ball, the Beard, Hairy & Sexy Leg Contest and a host of other activities.
Admission and venues vary. Info: (800) 260-5130, www.mccallchamber.org.
Santa Cruz County
Jan. 21: The Wine & Crab Taste-Off makes culinary judges out of diners. The event, in Soquel and Aptos, pairs crab and wine selections. For $45, you get two crab dishes at two restaurants of your choice among the five participating. (Each additional restaurant you visit is $15 more.) Then you judge in the categories of tastiest, most innovative, most creative and best presentation.
Info and tickets: (831) 685-8463, www.scmwa.com.
-- Amy Hubbard
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