It’s the most wonderful time of the year to go to shows, shop local and spend time with family
By Katrina Turchin | November 25, 2021
Shop It Like It’s Hot
December 3 – 12 Catch up on your Christmas shopping at The Public’s multi-weekend Christmas market. Visit the Old Strathcona location or head to Fort Edmonton Park for a whole new market experience with drink tastings and delicious food in addition to over 40 vendors.
Market at the River Cree
December 3 – 5 Shop local and Indigenous at the first annual Holiday Market at the River Cree Resort and Casino. Discover Indigenous artisans and makers, listen to live entertainment and get a photo with Santa!
Gingerbread for Charity
December 4 Decorate a gingerbread house for a good cause. Brew + Bloom is hosting a gingerbread house-building charity event with all proceeds going to the Zebra Child Protection Centre. Bring a buddy and get ready to show off your icing skills.
Weekends Zoo animals celebrate the holidays too. Visit the Edmonton Valley Zoo on weekends in December for Zoominescence featuring light displays and installations, skating, hot chocolate and fun for the whole family.
Christmas in Manchester Square
December 4 Manchester Square is hosting a day of holiday activities. Go for a sleigh ride, look at ice sculptures, take photos with Santa and browse the local winter market in Always Occasions.
Crafts and Cabbage Rolls
December 4 The Alberta Council for the Ukrainian Arts is back for the seventh annual Christmas market. The gallery and boutique will be full of food, arts and crafts vendors selling Ukrainian goods.
Light The Night
December 4 and 18 Sing ‘“O, Christmas Tree” as you look at the holiday tree in Churchill Square. Visit the tree anytime you like or join in on the weekend festivities including live music, short film screenings and a holiday light-up express train.
December 9 – 18 Join Ballet Edmonton for the annual Be Merry extravaganza. The Christmas variety show features dance, music and ends with cocktails in the lobby.
Hit the Ice
Anytime Head to one of the city’s many outdoor skating rinks to practice your double axel, or, just practice staying upright. Dress warm and check rink conditions before you head out.
December 11 A new piece curated by Lebo Disele and presented by Mile Zero Dance explores place, voice and visibility. Site/ Sight/ Place combines Masani St. Rose’s West African and Caribbean dances with poetry from Shima Robinson, also known as Dwennimmen.
Made with Love
December 11 – 12, 18 – 19 Wholly Handmade is having two Christmas markets this year with over 1,000 vendors at each event. Admission is free!
Saturdays throughout December Spend a Saturday afternoon listening to the sounds of local singers and songwriters at CO*LAB for their Saturday Music Series. Kimberley MacGregor, Jake Buckley and Holly Sangster are a few names on the lineup.
Art in Nature
Until December 12 Head to Lowlands Project Space for Collaborating with Nature, an installation curated by six University of Alberta art students. The opening reception is on December 2. Don’t miss the opportunity to see three unique collaborative works.
On the Hill
Anytime Spend a day on the hill at Edmonton Ski Club. Take to the lift with your skis or snowboard or slide down the hill by tube.
Under the Stars
December 16 – 18 Join Indigenous artist Mackenzie Brown for a night under the stars at the University of Alberta Botanic Gardens. Bring a camping chair and blankets, and cozy up by the fire as you listen to an interactive storytelling session accompanied by drumming and singing.
A Holiday Tradition
December 17 – 18 Shumka’s Nutcracker is a tradition beloved by many and it’s back for three shows. Experience the magic of the sugar plum fairy, toy soldiers and fairytale prince at the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium.
Christmas at the Symphony
December 17 – 30 What’s your favourite Christmas song? Chances are the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra is playing it at one of its many holiday performances. Listen to the “Hanukkah Song” at A Traditional Christmas or “Frosty the Snowman” at Holiday Magic.
Weekends until December 19 Ugly Christmas sweaters are encouraged at the St. Albert Indoor Christmas market. The indoor market is taking over The Enjoy Centre on weekends throughout December with dozens of local vendors.
A Day of Culture
Until December 19 Fort Edmonton Park’s Indigenous Peoples Experience is open outside of the regular season. Learn about the rich cultures of local First Nations and Métis Peoples at the exhibit, which recently won the Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement.
Snowshoe and Stargaze
Saturdays Bundle up in your warmest winter gear and head to Elk Island Park for snowshoeing and stargazing every Saturday. Let Orion and a park interpreter be your guides as you navigate the sky of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve.
Tunnel of Lights
Anytime Want to check out Christmas lights without braving the cold? The Canadian Tire Magic of Lights display puts you in the Christmas spirit and you don’t even have to leave your car. The 2.5 kilometre route has dazzling light displays and animations at every turn.
Next Stop: North Pole
Until December 24 Take a ride on the Aspen Crossing Polar Express Train inspired by the popular Christmas movie. The hour-long trip is set to sounds from the Polar Express motion picture soundtrack and ends at the North Pole where Santa waits to take photos. Expect cookies, hot chocolate, a reading of the Polar Express and actors dressed in character.
Going For Gold
Starting December 26 Cheer on Team Canada at the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship held at Rogers Place. Rep red and white, and fill the seats to cheer on the team as it goes for gold.
December 31 Ring in the new year with a seven course Table d’Hôte dinner at the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald. Order it for pick-up if you’d rather watch the fireworks from your own couch.