While it may seem gauche to talk about the holidays when it isn't even Halloween yet, the city's best winter events often take a little advance planning and Madison Square Garden has a new musical coming out that you're going to want to book tickets for now — or win four free ones with a cool contest going on next week.

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On October 14 at 11 a.m., Buddy the Elf will challenge 15 pre-selected participants to help find his missing snow globe, which will be hidden in a huge, 10-foot bowl of his favorite meal: spaghetti, cookies, candy canes, candy corns and maple syrup. The 15 participants will have to dig through the food (although shredded paper will be in place of the spaghetti) to find the snowglobe. Whoever wins it will get a $200 gift card to Carmine's restaurant and four tickets to see "Elf: The Music" at The Theater at Madison Square Garden this holiday season. The event will all take place at Madison Square Garden in Chase Square.

In celebration of "Elf: The Musical" and Buddy's love of spaghetti, Carmine's restaurant is donating 1,000 pounds of boxed pasta to the NYC Department of Homelessness.

For more information about the event or "Elf: The Musical," head to www.theateratmsg.com/elfevent.

Follow Emily on Twitter: @EmLaurence