The holidays are a great time to reflect on what to be thankful for and what’s important in life, like our friends and family. One item we should also include in the list of things to be thankful for is Los Angeles, the city we call home. So why not give a little back to LA in this final month of 2011? Here are a few events that will help to get you in the holiday spirit.

> Join Transition LA on Friday, December 2nd for a Community Garden Workday at Adams Middle School in the South Bay for a hands-on garden learning experience.

> Native gardens are pretty neat. Cabrillo Marine Aquarium is hosting a beach cleanup in San Pedro on Saturday, December 3rd as well as a native garden workshop, where you can learn about local plant and animal habitats.

> TreePeople is an organization that get things done and you can help them out. On Sunday, December 4th the group will be in Topanga doing a little restoration work and they are looking for a few good volunteers to chip in a little time and muscle!

> Want to learn more about composting? Want to own a compost bin? These dreams can come true at Griffith Park on Friday, December 9th, where the City of LA will be holding a sale and compost training session.

> Friends of Ballona Wetlands wants you to learn more about the importance of freshwater marsh habitat in your own backyard. On Saturday, December 10th, they will be holding a tour of a freshwater marsh so you to experience this vibrant landscape firsthand.

> Time to get rid of that grass! Save water and provide habitat with California native plants. The Resource Conservation District of Santa Monica Mountains will be holding a native plant sale in Malibu on Saturday, December 10th.

> Ditch the plastic! On Thursday December 15th, join thousands of shoppers across California to say no to plastic bags. Join Heal the Bay on Saturday, December 3rd for a training on how to support this reusable bag campaign in your own community. Plastic pollutes our waterways and kills fish. Take the pledge and make every day a day without single-use plastic bags.

> If you live in Long Beach, join Justin Rudd’s 30 Minute Beach Cleanup on Saturday, December 17th. You’ll be amazed with how much trash you can collect in a matter of 1,800 seconds.

> Whale watching is one of the most extraordinary opportunities we have as residents of Southern California. On Monday, December 26th, the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium will be holding boat tours in search of migrating gray whales. You won’t want to miss out, neither will your kids.

For a full listing of stormwater friendly events happening throughout LA this month, please visit our monthly calendar. Happy Holidays from the LA Stormwater Program!

*Photo courtesy of OC Parks.