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What’s Hot Across Canada in December


Celebrate the holiday season in time-honoured fashion with the Nutcracker Suite and Sugarplum Fair Dec 28 – 30, featuring the talents of the Canadian Pacific Ballet, paired with the magic of a youth-focused “fair” in the lobby. The final performance also includes the “Sugarplum Ball,” complete with dancing and an 18-piece big band. 

Canadian Rockies

Drop by the Jasper-Yellowhead Museum to admire the beautifully decorated table-top trees in the Festival of Trees to Dec 18. Or, allow your holiday charity spirit to guide your bid on one of these stunning trees to support the Museum and Community Dinner program.


‘Tis the season in Calgary as Heritage Park kicks off its annual holiday tradition, Once Upon A Christmas, which features horse drawn wagon rides, costumed carolers, outdoor skating and even a visit from old Saint Nick, happening each weekend throughout the month. Catch some Stampede Spirit in the middle of winter with country girl Carrie Underwood, Dec 19 at the Scotiabank Saddledome. She’ll be performing material from her new album Play On as well as hits like “Before He Cheats,” during her show.


A pair of family-friendly holiday favourites grace Toronto stages this month. From Dec 11 – Jan 2, The National Ballet of Canada’s glorious interpretation of The Nutcracker sets the whimsical tale of toy soldiers and sugar plum fairies to James Kudelka’s renowned choreography—and, of course, Tchaikovsky’s unforgettable score. Equally enticing, is Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas the Musical, which brings the classic rhymes, riddles, whimsical illustrations and holiday cheer to life in a Broadway-style production Dec 17 – Jan 2.


The holiday spirit is burning bright throughout the month thanks to Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension BridgeBright Nights in Stanley Park, the Festival of Lights at VanDusen Botanical Garden and  the Carol Ships Parade of Lights, running until Dec 23 Meanwhile, the One of a Kind Show from Dec 9 – 12, carries unique gift ideas that are sure to please everyone of your list.


Manitoba Theatre Centre brings to the stage a classic story to celebrate the season, Irving Berlin’s White Christmas: The Musical. Based upon the famous film, the show dazzles with timeless tunes like Bing Crosby’s best-selling single “White Christmas.” Running until Dec 18. The Royal Winnipeg Ballet is known internationally for poised and precise performances of The Nutcracker. The Tchaikovsky classic takes on local flair with backdrops depicting local heritage scenes, Dec 22 – 29 at the Centennial Concert Hall.


A charming classic for the whole family, Tom Wood’s adaptation of A Christmas Carol, running until Dec 23, is set to entertain Edmonton for its 11th season. Expect outstanding performances, brilliant set displays and a story that will wrap you up warmly into the spirit of the season.


The Ottawa installment of Christmas Lights Across Canada runs Dec 2 – Jan. 7 with 300,000 lights illuminating the city from dusk until 2 a.m. Museums, monuments, embassies, and other prominent landmarks, including Parliament Hill, get decked out for the season to brighten up even the darkest days of winter.


Symphony Nova Scotia’s annual performance of Handle’s Messiah is a rite of Christmas in Halifax. The Halifax Camerata Singers join the orchestra and Noel Edison, music director of the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, conducts. Get your tickets early, as this popular show almost always sells out. Performances on Dec 17 – 18 at the Dalhousie Arts Centre on University Avenue.

Watch the famous light displays and tour historic West Coast Rail Heritage Park on the mini rail during the 11th annual Christmas Lights in the Park. Ring in the New Year at the annual First Night Whistler—an alcohol-free event that features live music, acrobatics and psychics.

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