Bundle up the kids and head on out to create some wonderful holiday memories. From winter picnics... to the beautiful music of the season and everything in between, here are some of our favorite ideas to make this holiday extra special for you and your family.
November 12 to December 12; Winterstart Festival, Banff National Park. All of the holiday merriment, shimmer of lights and culinary delights of the season come together for a month-long jubilee at the Winterstart Festival. Come see why there’s no better place to get in the spirit than Banff National Park. banfflakelouise.com/winterstart
November 18 to December 20; Lougheed House Christmas. Enjoy the House filled with glamorous holiday décor, Christmas trees and unique furniture pieces. On weekends, there will be live music, crafts and performances. lougheedhouse.com
November 21, 10am to 5pm; 31st Annual Waldorf Faire: A Festival of Joy, Calgary Waldorf School. There will be unique children’s activities, an artisan market full of specially-selected, all locally-handcrafted wares, live entertainment and a café with homemade food. Takes place at 515 Cougar Ridge Drive SW. 403-287-1868; calgarywaldorf.org
Weekends, November 21 to December 20, 9am to 4pm; Once Upon A Christmas, Heritage Park Historical Village. Enjoy a festive horse-drawn wagon ride, cookie decorating, crafts, shopping and more! Tour the decorated homes, sing carols and visit Santa and his friendly farm critters! heritagepark.ca
November 20-22 and 27 and December 13; New West Symphony & Chorus in Concert in Airdrie. DayBreak Community Church hosts NWSC in Airdrie at Bert Church Live Theatre! Join for a fun and inspiring evening of regular season favorites, and a preview of some Christmas material! To learn more about NWSC, visit the website. www.nwsymphonyandchorus.com
November 27 to January 2, 6 to 9pm; Zoolights! Head down to the Calgary Zoo to see over 1.5 million lights twisting around trees, tracing animal and dinosaur shapes, and flashing to music. Along the way, stop to warm up by fire pits and have some fun in the Kids Zone! Dress warmly. The Zoo will make the hot chocolate! For more info and to purchase tickets: calgaryzoo.com
November 28, 11am to 12Noon; Santa Claus Parade, Fort Macleod. The parade features over 8 marching bands, floats, horses, dogs and of course Santa Claus! facebook.com/fortmacleodsantaclausparade
November 28 & 29 and December 12 & 13, 11am to 3pm; Pet Santa Photos, Pisces Pet Emporium. Bring a donation to the food bank to receive a free pet picture! 4921 Skyline Way NE.
November 28 to December 24; THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride. Join for a magical journey to the North Pole! Bring back the magic of THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride aboard the Aspen Crossing Railway! Your family can start a new holiday tradition and create treasured memories. To book: 1-866-440-3500; aspencrossing.com
December 1 to 31, 6 to 9pm; 20th Annual Airdrie Festival of Lights. Come for a walk outside at Nose Creek Park through acres of brightly lit Christmas displays. Ride on the new Electric Train, grab a hot chocolate and sit by the fire, and more! Admission is by cash donation. airdriefestivaloflights.com
December 2-3 & 4; The Nutcracker in a Nutshell takes children through the classic ballet The Nutcracker in just 30 minutes. 10:30am at Cardel Theatre. Set to Tchaikovsky's music, The Nutcracker Prince, Rat King, Snow Queen, Sugar Plum and all her friends make an appearance. Make Christmas crafts before the show. Waltz of the flowers interactive character dance and creativity workshop follow the performance. Nutcracker in a Nutshell is part of Soulocentric’s Bach Tots program. Best suited for kids 0-6 years old, but all ages welcome! Event is approx. 45 minutes long. We also run in two other locations. Check website for details soulocentric.org.
December 4 & 5, 8pm; Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra Presents, Cirque Musica Holiday Spectacular. Daring circus acrobats and aerialists suspended high above the stage are seamlessly choreographed to music. Takes place at the Jack Singer Concert Hall. To purchase tickets: 403-571-0849; calgaryphil.com
December 4 to 23; StoryBook Theatre Presents, A Christmas Story: the Musical. The story takes place in 1940s Indiana where Ralphie has a big imagination and one wish for Christmas. A kooky leg lamp, outrageous pajamas, a cranky department store Santa and a triple dog-dare to lick a freezing flagpole are some of the obstacles that stand between Ralphie and his Christmas dream. For ages 6 +. For showtimes and to purchase tickets: storybooktheatre.org
December 6; A Venetian Christmas. 3:00 pm - 5:30 pm. Calgary’s award-winning Spiritus Chamber Choir’s December concert will bring Italy to Knox United Church! “A Venetian Christmas” will explore the rich and sonorous sounds of the late Renaissance and early Baroque periods in works by Gabrieli, Grandi and Monteverdi. Spiritus will be joined by specialists from across the continent performing on sackbuts and cornetti. Every balcony will be ringing with a glorious sound! spirituschamberchoir.ca
December 6; Stars of Christmas Winter Festival. 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm. An afternoon of winter family fun for the entire community! There will be live music, food, an interactive game show, live family theatre shows, kids' indoor "Wintry Woods" activity centre, a model railroading display, a petting zoo and a live nativity, gingerbread house display, family-friendly illusionist, Calgary Dream Centre "Festival of Trees" display and much more! All ages welcome. faccalgary.com/events/
December 6, 13, 20, 10am to 12Noon & 1 to 3pm; The City of Calgary, Devonian Drop ‘n Shop. Drop off your kids, ages 4 to 12, at Devonian Gardens for some playtime while you shop for the holidays. The kids will have tons of fun playing nature games, making cool crafts and going on a garden adventure! Takes place at Devonian Gardens at The CORE Shopping Centre. To register: 311; calgary.ca/parks
*December 7, 7 to 8:30pm; Family Skate Night, Village Square Leisure Centre. Join for fun on the ice rink and enjoy hot chocolate by the fire. Bring your own skates or borrow skates and helmets (available on a first come, first serve basis.) If you use the rest of the facility amenities, regular admission applies.
Monday, December 7, 2015 at 7:30pm - 10:00pm; Westwinds Music Society Christmas Concert. Celebrate the joy and warmth of Christmas with Westwinds Music Society's Christmas Concert! A fun-filled, festive event for the whole family. Five concert bands and choirs of all levels performing songs of the season. Westwinds Music Society is Calgary's only community band that offers instruction and performance opportunities for adults of all skill levels. Tickets will be available at the door: $15 for Adults, $10 for Students/Seniors, and $5 for Kids under 12. www.westwindsmusic.org
*December 7 to 11, 12Noon to 1pm; Sing and Skate, Olympic Plaza. Enjoy school choirs perform as they perform seasonal favorites on the Main Stage. Bring your skates and take a spin on the ice. calgary.ca
December 12, 7:30pm; Arrogant Worms Christmas, Bert Church Theatre, Airdrie. The world is still dumb and The Arrogant Worms still have plenty to sing about! To purchase tickets: airdrie.ca/index.cfm?serviceID=424
December 14, Fitness Frolic, Southland Leisure Centre. Come out to a fun, festive fitness class! Goodies and door prizes. Admission is free with a donation to the food bank. Adult water classes from 8 to 9am and 9:15 to 10:15am, and an adult dry land class from 9:15 to 10:15am.
December 16, 7:30pm; Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra Presents, Holiday Pops. Delight your family with this uplifting holiday concert brimming with popular carols, Christmas cheer and a VIP visitor from the North Pole. Takes place at the Jack Singer Concert Hall. To purchase tickets: 403-571-0849; calgaryphil.com
*December 17, 8 to 9pm MDT; Live Webinar, “Gift Giving from the Heart and Hands: Easy Gifts to Make with your Children.” Brought to you by Professional Parenting Canada and +Calgary’s Child Magazine. Register today: attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7094367144837090818
December 17-24; Alberta Ballet Presents, The Nutcracker. Make plans now to see Calgary’s favorite holiday tradition! You and your family will love the exquisite choreography, Tchaikovsky’s immortal score, the marvelous sets and costumes, and the Sugarplum Parties with pre-show activities for young and old alike. A winter experience to be savoured and shared. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the website. albertaballet.com
December 19, 10am to 2pm; Skate with Santa, Trico Centre for Family Wellness. The skate is from 10am to Noon and other activities take place from 12:15 to 2pm. Join Santa for seasonal crafts, skate to festive music, and enjoy hot chocolate and cookies! For more info and to register: tricocentre.ca
December 19; WinSport Christmas at the Track, Viessmann Luge World Cup. Take photos with Santa, enjoy sleigh rides, petting zoo, face painting, airbrush tattoo artist, cookie decorating, flip books, ball pit, bouncy castle, family skating and a spring-free trampoline! You can even catch a glimpse of exciting Luge World Cup action! winsport.ca/christmas
December 19, 7:30pm; Cantaré Children’s Choir Presents, Frost and Fire. Bask in the glow of candlelight as the angelic sound of children’s voices sing the glorious music of the season. Takes place at Knox United Church: 506, 4 Street SW. To purchase tickets: brownpapertickets.ca
December 27 to 31; Winter CARnival, Gasoline Alley Museum, Heritage Park Historical Village. Enjoy this fun-filled indoor event that has everyone playing along! Includes winter-themed games and activities. heritagepark.ca
December 31, Gymnasium, 4:30 to 6:30pm and Pool Party, 5:30 to 8:30pm; New Year’s Eve Wave Pool Family Event, Village Square Leisure Centre. Play, swim, jump, splash and slide into 2016! Join in the gymnasium for arts & crafts, games, obstacle courses, bouncy house and the “Take a Selfie” photo booth! Then the party will head to the waterpark where there will be a DJ pumping out the sounds as families enjoy the wave pool, slides, hot tub and safari splash! Don’t forget to stay until the very end to enjoy the Pool Party Countdown!
December 31, 10am to 4pm; Noon Year’s Eve, TELUS Spark. Join for a special Noon Year’s Eve celebration to ring in 2016 early with your little ones! Perfect for Calgarians with early bedtimes. Enjoy a day jam-packed with family fun, live science demonstrations and experiences including a special countdown at Noon! sparkscience.ca
*December 31, 7 to 9pm; New Year’s Eve Family Dance Party, The City of Calgary Recreation. There will be music and activities for the young and young-at-heart.Wear neon or white and anything that glows! Bring your dancing shoes. Kids Countdown at 9pm. Takes place at the Municipal Building - 800 Macleod Trail SE. calgary.ca/NYE
*December 31, 9pm to 12Midnight; New Year’s Eve Outdoor Celebration, The City of Calgary Recreation. Follow up the Family Dance Party with an Outdoor Winter Party! Bundle up and enjoy skating,music and family fun. Finish off the evening with a countdown to midnight and fireworks. Takes place at Olympic Plaza - 222, 8 Avenue SE. calgary.ca/NYE
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