25 Things To Do In Edmonton This December

Get festive and spread holiday cheer all across the city.

December 1, 2018

Photography courtesy of Glow Gardens

Light up your night on Whyte

See the lights, shop at the Farmers' Market during extended hours, take a picture with Santa and warm up by the fires at the Winter Whyte Light Up at McIntyre Park on December 1. Free for all ages from 4-6 PM. 

McIntyre Park, 8331 104 St., oldstrathcona.ca

Take in the essence of winter at the Valley Zoo

Starting December 1, Zoominescence, hosted by the Valley Zoo Development Society, will stage a spectacular exhibition of artistic light installations within the unique setting of the Edmonton Valley Zoo. The festival’s vision is to celebrate light, artistry, imagination and the strong spirit of our community in the winter. With a skating rink, ice slide, fire dancers, ice and light exhibits and 11 artist installations, what could be a better outing in the cool month of December? Runs every weekend until December 30, with bonus opening on the 26 and 27.  

Edmonton Valley Zoo, 13315 Buena Vista Road, 780-442-5311, buildingourzoo.com 

Experience days of Christmas Past

Taste some Christmas teas and a 19th century Christmas dinner, then stroll through a street market in the Citadel’s large central corridor at Edmonton’s new winter festival, Dickensfest, December 1 and 2. Don't forget a donation for the Edmonton Food Bank!

Citadel Theatre, 9828 101A Ave., citadeltheatre.com 

Enjoy a musical family affair

On December 1, join Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy, the award-winning fiddle virtuosos, in an intimate and unique Christmas concert series you will never forget. With the duo accompanied by an incredible array of talented session musicians — and their entire family — A Celtic Family Christmas will guide you into the wonderful world of a true Cape Breton Christmas celebration.

Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium, 11455 87 Ave., 780-427-2760, jubileeauditorium.com

Illuminate the season

Bring together the people you love to stroll, laugh and play under the (indoor) twinkle of a million lights at The Enjoy Centre's Christmas Glow. Playgrounds and interactive features will entertain the kids for hours, while adults can kick back at the licensed bar for some seasonal beverages, delicious food and live music. Glow’s illuminated sculptures are the perfect backdrop for selfies and holiday family photos. 

The Enjoy Centre, 101 Riel Drive, St. Albert, glowgardens.com

Be your own elf and make Christmas Crafts

Come join Rochelle and Nikki on December 1 (1:30 pm - 4:30 pm) for an afternoon of Christmas crafting, treats and refreshments. Create a customized wall hanging that will brighten up your space for the season.

Strathcona County Museum & Archives, 913 Ash Street, Sherwood Park, eventbrite.ca

Every creature was skating — even the mouse!

Make unforgettable memories with Mickey and Minnie Mouse and all your Disney friends when Disney On Ice presents Dare to Dream comes to Edmonton EXPO Centre, Hall D, November 29 to December 2. 

Edmonton EXPO Centre, 7515 118 Ave NW, 780-471-7377, edmonotonexpocentre.com

Oh Christmas tree(s) ...

Step into your own personal snow globe and marvel at beautifully decorated trees at the Festival of Trees, November 29 to December 2. Wander down Children’s Christmas Lane where you can meet Santa, visit the North Pole post office (with instant delivery!), listen to stories or get Christmas crafty.

Shaw Conference Centre, 9797 Jasper Ave, 780-421-9797, shawconferencecentre.com

Home for the Holidays with Johnny Reid

Watch multi-award-winning singer-songwriter Johnny Reid perform with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, December 3 and 4. 

Winspear Centre, 4 Sir Winston Churchill Square, 780-428-1414, winspearcentre.com 

Return of the Sock

He’s back! On December 5, Canadian icon Ed the Sock, brings his sharp, incisive humour to Union Hall with his "War on Stupid" tour. He'll bring the famous and infamous down to our level, cut through the spin and say what we all think … out loud.

Union Hall, 6240 99 St., 780-702-2528, unionhall.ca

Stroll down Edmonton's brightest lane

The city's annual west end tradition starts December 7. Join thousands of Edmontonians to take in the sights and sounds of Candy Cane Lane while helping the Edmonton Food Bank. 

Candy Cane Lane, 9915 148 St., yegcandycanelane.com

See Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley 

A witty, fun "sequel" to Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, the story focuses on Mary, the bookish, often overlooked middle child, as she navigates a potential romance with Mr. Darcy's smart but awkward cousin, Arthur. The production runs until December 9.

Citadel Theatre, 9828 101A Ave., 780-425-1820, citadeltheatre.com 

The Nutcracker!

Acclaimed as one of Canada's finest renderings and celebrated as a delightfully traditional depiction, Edmund Stripe's The Nutcracker celebrates its 10th anniversary this season. Experience the timeless magic December 6 to 9. 

Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium, 11455 87 Ave NW, 780-427-2760, jubileeauditorium.com

Play some puck and help a good cause

Join OILERSLIVE Podcast Michael and Megathread Mike on December 9, as a spectator or participant, for a fun game of exhibition hockey with fellow Oilers fans. All donations will go directly to Chinook Autism Society. 

Downtown Community Arena,10330 105 Ave., 780-920-0555, oilers.live

See a singing Christmas tree

From December 13 to 16, see dancing Santas, ballerinas, Christmas classics and, most impressively, a 35-foot singing Christmas tree of 150 choir members at the Jubilee Auditorium. The Singing Christmas Tree is one of Edmonton’s most inspiring and charitable Christmas events of the year. Every December, the Singing Christmas Tree raises funds in support of the John Cameron Changing Lives Foundation. Not only does the Singing Christmas Tree spread the cheer of the holiday season, they are changing the community for the better.

Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium, 11455 87 Ave NW, 780-427-2760, jubileeauditorium.com

Participate in a pantomime

See — and take part in — Little Red Riding Hood, December 14 to 30, at Fort Edmonton Park. In true British Pantomime style, you're encouraged to participate, and the more you do, the better the play becomes!

Fort Edmonton Park, 7000 143 St., 780-496-7381fortedmontonpark.ca

Take a Muttart Light Walk

Experience magic as you walk through the Temperate Pyramid at the Muttart Conservatory. There will be a variety of light installations that will light up the space and transform it into a winter wonderland. Check out the illuminated sights from December 14 until December 27.

Muttart Conservatory, 9626 96A St., 780-496-8755, edmonton.ca

Spin your wheels in a winter wonderland

Go for a 2 km “drive through” in your own car on Castrol raceway under hundreds of thousands of vibrant LED lights and animations (and an appearance from Santa himself!), with a portion of proceeds going to 630 Santa's Anonymous and Canadian Tire Jump Start. Engines run until January 5. 

Castrol Raceway, Highway 19 & Highway 2 (2 km west of Nisku), 780-461-5801, castrolraceway.com

Take a Christmas light tour with ETS

It’s time to get into the festive spirit with the ETS Holiday Lights Tours, returning this year from December 14 to 16. Every year, ETS operators and their families volunteer to chauffeur and host tours for friends, families and newcomers to view the festive lights.

Starts at the Alberta Legislature, 9820 107 St., 780-427-7362, edmonton.ca

Watch the ultimate Christmas classic

See the heart-warming family classic to put you in the holiday spirit as three Ghosts of Christmas show Scrooge the value of giving. A Christmas Carol, now in its 19th (and final) season at the Citadel, is universally beloved for its dynamic themes and uplifting message.

Citadel Theatre, 9828 101A Ave., 780-425-1820, citadeltheatre.com 

Snowshoe and stargaze

Take a snowshoe hike along the shore of Astotin Lake, warm up and refresh around the fire and gaze up at the stars at Elk Island Park, on December 22 and 29.

Elk Island National Park, 48 km east of Edmonton on Highway 16, 780-922-5790, elkislandpark.ca 

Nutcracker, Shumka style

A truly Edmonton Nutcracker, this holiday classic is produced and performed by local artists. This luxurious and uniquely powerful production features ballet, folk and character dance in a celebration of Tchaikovsky's beloved score, and runs on December 22 and 23. 

Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium, 11455 87 Ave NW, 780-427-2760, shumka.com 

Get some holiday shopping done at a bazaar with local vendors

On December 14 to 16, the 124 Grand Market brings many of your favourite vendors together again for the Holiday Bazaar. The local shopping experience will feature over 50 vendors, from makers to bakers to growers, as well as live music and food trucks.

Capital Arts Building, 10560 107 St., 124grandmarket.com

Celebrate the season with dance, music and song

Ballet Edmonton comes to the Varscona Theatre stage on December 14 and 15 with Be Merry!, a choreographic series featuring six short seasonally-inspired balletic works by Ballet Edmonton company dancers, as well as guests from the theatre and music communities. There will also be seasonal cocktails by Strathcona Distillery. 

The Varscona Theatre, 10329 83 Ave., tickets.balletedmonton.ca

Ring in the New Year in style

On December 30, the salute to Vienna New Year's Concert returns to the Winspear Centre. The celebration of song and dance will feature beloved operettas performed by European singers, champion ballroom dancers, ballet dancers, as well as a live symphony orchestra. 

Winspear Centre, 4 Sir Winston Churchill Square, 800-545-7807, salutetovienna.com/edmonton


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