Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

weekend-events17

The last weekend before Christmas! Since you are done all your holiday shopping (right?), take advantage of all the events Vancouver is offering! Read on for our roundup of things to do in Vancouver this weekend.


Friday, December 20, 2013

 

Firehall Arts Centre presents Hotel Bethlehem 8pm @ Firehall Arts Centre (280 Cordova St. E)
Various pricing
Back in time for the holiday season, this wildly funny Christmas satire dares to deconstruct the Nativity Story, playfully posing questions like, why was The Inn so full? Who would turn away a very pregnant woman? Award-winning playwright Drew McCreadie’s outrageous and insightful comedy for adults takes an inside look at what actually happened at the Inn that infamous silent night. Warning: wacky jokes and crude puns may induce laughter. Running until December 22.

Photo Credit: Firehall Arts Centre

Photo Credit: Firehall Arts Centre

Pacific Theatre presents Christmas Presence 8pm @ Pacific Theatre (1440 W 12th Ave.)
$31.50; other pricing in effect
A collection of songs and stories featuring a rotating line up of local musicians and actors that dates back to its beginnings 30 years ago. Pacific Theatre is proud to present Christmas Presence, a collection of songs and stories for the holiday season. An ad-hoc gathering of musicians and actors who meet day-of to trade songs and choose readings, Christmas Presence is both everything you might expect from a holiday show, as well as the exact opposite. Setting aside the lavish sets and costumes that dominate the season for what Artistic Director Ron Reed likes to call “the un-slickest Christmas show in town.” The vibe is that of a family gathering that has burst into song – if you happen to have a family of diverse and talented musicians who harbour an equal love for David Sedaris, Stuart McLean, and Madeleine L’Engle.

12 Days of Christmas at Robson Square Ice Rink 9am-11pm @ Robson Square
Free skating if you have your own skates; rentals are $4
The 12 days of Christmas are a festive time of year at the Robson Square Ice Rink. Bring your family and friends down to the ice rink this holiday season for a music series as local musicians will perform their holiday favorites from December 13th to the 24th. Tonight’s performer is The So Tight Band from 6pm-9pm.
The fun outdoor skating rink at Robson Square is open for another winter season until February 28, 2014. The ice rink is open 7 days a week: Sunday-Thursday 9am-9pm, Friday & Saturday 9am-11pm. Helmets are mandatory for children 12 years and under. There are skate and helment rentals, and a concession booth on site. Cash only. Skate rentals end 30minutes before closing. Dress warmly and have fun!

Vancouver Aquarium presents Luminescence open 10am-5pm @ Vancouver Aquarium
$25
A celebration of aquatic light – Come in out of the cold and enjoy a unique experience of aquatic light that will help lift those winter blues. Discover the incredible world of fluorescent and bioluminescent light that exists in the dark depths of the ocean through exhibits, shows and up close encounters with glowing anemones, cuttlefish, jellies and corals. Plus take a journey far below the ocean surface to explore aquatic light with a new deep-dive interactive at the Vancouver Aquarium. This digital experience means you’ll stay dry as you discover how the ocean changes once sunlight disappears. Learn about the different animals that call the deepest parts of the ocean home and compare their depths with the height of familiar buildings and mountains. Discover bioluminescent animals that make their own light in a place where darkness reigns. This floor to ceiling interactive deep-dive installation is an “immersive” experience that will take you from the surface of the ocean to the abyss. Running until January 22, 2014.

Photo Credit: Vancouver Aquarium

Photo Credit: Vancouver Aquarium

Presentation House Theatre presents Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen 8pm @ Presentation House Theatre (333 Chesterfield Ave., North Vancouver)
$28.00; other pricing in effect
Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen is a fresh holiday musical for the whole family (age 7+). Feeling underappreciated at the North Pole, Mrs. Claus discovers a magical recipe for drawing families together. Set on the cusp of the 1960s, when modern Christmas really came of age, the show takes the audience on a tuneful ride filled with charm, laughter and a fresh look at the hustle, bustle and real worth of a family holiday. There are elves, laughter, song and dance and a chance for the audience to get “hands on” in the kitchen of the world’s most famous workshop!

4Cats Arts Studio presents Winter Break Camps 3:30-6:30pm @ 4Cats Queensbury (640 Queensbury Ave., North Vancouver)
$65
Themes include: Fairytale, Wildlife, Monsters, and Mixed Media. Today’s 1 Day Camp: Mixed Media – Give the Gift! Capture the beauty of the winter season by creating a beautiful landscape birch tree with birds painting and a winter seal ornament! Camps run as 1 and 2 day sessions from December 17th-January 3rd

Arts Club Theatre Company presents It’s Snowing on Saltspring 8pm @ Granville Island Stage (1585 Johnston St.)
Various ticket pricing
A Homegrown Christmas Tale Arts Club Classic By Nicola Cavendish. It’s Christmas Eve on Saltspring Island. The stockings aren’t hung by the chimney with care and disenchanted Bill Bannister hopes that St. Nick won’t be there. Will it take a reindeer-guided trip to the North Pole for Bill to rediscover the spirit of Christmas?

Photo Credit: Arts Club Theatre Company

Photo Credit: Arts Club Theatre Company

Christmas at FlyOver Canada 10am-9pm @ FlyOver Canada (201-999 Canada Place)
$19.95
Help Santa Save Christmas at FlyOver Canada this holiday season! Enjoy a Christmas themed pre-show and pre-boarding experience including the Ultimate Flying Ride – FlyOver Canada. Share in the magic of Christmas at our free outdoor Christmas Plaza featuring: Live entertainment including holiday music favorites and more, Santa’s Artic Art Workshop display with live ice carving shows every Friday at 5pm commencing from December 6 onwards, Delicious tastes of Christmas with waffles, drinks and candied nuts by Leonidas Belgian Chocolates and Swiss Style Nuts. December 24 closed at 5pm & December 25 closed.

Christmas Night Marketplace 5-8pm @ River Market Westminster Quay
Free admission
Unique Crafters with hand-made products: Pure Daily Essentials, de la Bouche Specialty Foods, Gypsy Jean Jewellery & Bead Parties, Angelque Creations, The Candid Confectioner, Wood Turner, Pottery, Sewing, Knitting, Ornaments, Jams, & More! Enjoy live music, balloon artists, food and drink specials from River Market tenants, and fresh Christmas florals! The Artisans Shop, Mid-Century Modern Home, and River Market Food Hall will also be open late for all our Friday Night shoppers. Come do your Christmas Shopping Locally! Please bring food donation for the Food Bank.

The Cultch presents An East Van Panto 7pm @ York Theatre (639 Commercial Dr., Vancouver)
Various ticket pricing
Get ready for a wild ride! Theatre Replacement (Dress me up in your live) returns to blow the roof off the brand new York Thatre with An East Van Panto. With words and music by Amiel Gladstone and Veda Hille (Do You Want What I Have Got? A Craigslist Cantata), this upside down version of the classic holiday pantomime-complete with bad guys, good guys, hissing and cheering-will be a sweet and whacked-out treat for the whole family.

Photo Credit: The Cultch

Photo Credit: The Cultch

Cavalia’s Odysseo 8pm @ Cavalia – Under the Big Top in Olympic Village (299 West 1st Ave.)
$54.50-$229.50; other pricing in effect
The internationally acclaimed Cavalia pushes the limits of live entertainment with its newest production that is now touring the globe. Cavalia Odysseo is a theatrical experience, an ode to horse and man that marries the equestrian arts, awe inspiring acrobatics and high-tech theatrical effects. Set under a 38-meter tall White Big Top, audiences will be transported around the world as more than 50 horses and an international cast play and demonstrate their intimate bond. The 1,393 square meter stage features a real carousel and a magically appearing 302,000-litre lake in front of a stunning video backdrop the size of three IMAX screens. Odysseo is a two-hour dream that will move the heart and touch the soul. It is an evening that the audience will never forget. Runs until January 5.

Holiday Hi-Light Festival 6-9pm @ Park & Tilford Gardens (333 Brooksbank Ave., North Vancouver)
Admission by Donation
The holiday Hi-Light Festival at Park & Tilford Gardens is one of the North Shore’s most majestic festival of lights with over 50,000 lights on display. Open nightly to December 31st. Santa himself will be visiting on Friday and Saturday evenings from 6pm-9pm until Christmas. 100% proceeds to the City and District of North Vancouver Firefighters Charitable Society. Until Christmas Family Friday Nights will include live entertainment and activities.

The Vancouver Trolley Company presents Karaoke Christmas Lights – The Ultimate Christmas Tour 6:30pm departing @ Canada Place
$40; other pricing in effect
3hrs of Christmas Fun featuring Stanley Park’s Bright Nights Display and Van Dusen Botanical Garden’s Festival of Lights. Festively decorated Trolleys equipped with karaoke machines for your seasonal singing enjoyment will depart from Canada Place at 6:30pm every evening from December 11th through 30th, 2013 (except for Christmas Day). Upon pickup, guests will sing their way past the city lights of downtown before arriving at Bright Nights at Stanley Park. After being given some time to walk through the light display and take in Stanley Park’s holiday magic (sorry no time for the Christmas Train), the tour will continue through local light displays on the way to the second stop of the evening, at Van Dusen Botanical Garden’s Festival of Lights. A donation to the Burn Fund is included in each ticket on the Karaoke Christmas Lights Trolley tour. Running until December 30.

Photo Credit: The Vancouver Trolley Company

Photo Credit: The Vancouver Trolley Company

Bright Nights at the Stanley Park Miniature Train 11am-11pm @ Stanley Park Train Plaza
$11; other pricing in effect
It’s that wonderfully festive time of year again! This wildly popular event will be running from December 5th to January 5th. Come see this loveable scamp’s antics and mishaps, as you ride the beautifully decorated Bright Nights train through, our Stanley Park forest. Perfect for all ages. Advance tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster (online or at Tourism Vancouver’s Tickets Tonight) or on site the day off. Tickets have specific train times.
Hours of Operation:
Friday – Sunday 11am-3pm Matinee train (No live actors during matinee trains)
Friday – Sunday 3pm – 11pm (Ticket sales begin at 12 noon)
Walk around the plaza to enjoy more lights and holiday activities. There may be a special guest in a red suit.

Vancouver Christmas Market 11am-9pm @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza (650 Hamilton St.)
$3 (11am-4pm Mon-Fri), $6 (4pm-9pm Mon-Fri); other pricing in effect
The Vancouver Christmas Market is an annual can’t-miss Vancouver Christmas event running from November 22 to December 24, 2013. More than just a craft fair, this authentic German Christmas Market creates the perfect atmosphere to mix and mingle with friends and family, strolling through romantic rows of little wooden huts decorated in pine branches and illuminated with strings of little white lights. In each hut discover terrific food and drink and a wonderful array of Christmas gifts. During the pre-Christmas season, the Market is the perfect destination for combining an outing with friends and family with some Christmas shopping. Business people will find it a fun meeting place for a quick bite during lunch time or a drink after work (be sure to use our 2 for 1 Lunch Pass!). With a wide variety of cultural activities and entertainment events, it also becomes a place for people to enjoy and mingle before a night on the town. A special children’s area known as the Kids’ Market will give youngsters the chance to make their own Christmas gifts and ride downtown Vancouver’s only Christmas Carousel.

Britannia Mine Museum presents Guided Underground Experience 11am-3pm @ Britannia Mine Museum (1 Forbes Way, Britannia Beach)
$21.50; other pricing in effect
Looking for something to do over the holidays? Britannia Mine Museum is open all through the festive season, except for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Come for a guided underground experience: take a trip similar to miners in 1914, see demonstrations of actual working drills and equipment, hear the stories of early mining efforts, browse the exhibits and pan for real gold. In order to meet your Interpreter and desired tour time, please arrive 15 minutes prior to tour time. Tours are offered on a first come, first served basis. Running until December 31.
Monday – Friday: Tours are offered at 11am, 1pm, & 3pm (last tour).

Photo Credit: Britannia Mine Museum

Photo Credit: Britannia Mine Museum

2013 Gingerbread Lane – Culinary Showcase All Day @ Hyatt Regency Hotel (655 Burrard St.)
Free admission
It’s the sweet smell of the holidays in the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel. Vote for your favourite gingerbread house creation from November 28 – December 27th with proceeds to Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon. The centrepiece is Executive Chef Thomas Heinrich’s gigantic gingerbread building that measures 11 feet tall and 16 feet wide. Ingredients include 500 pounds of gingerbread dough, 400 pounds of confection sugar and 1,400 egg whites, plus a few secret ingredients and a little help from Hyatt’s engineering department. Four foot tall cut outs of gingerbread families are also available for picture taking. More than 30 individually crafted gingerbread creations from culinary professionals, amature bakers, and secondary schools round out the sweet smelling lavish display.

Arts Club Theatre Company presents Mary Poppins 8pm @ Stanley Alliance Industrial Stage (2750 Granville St.)
$29-$119
Another night of Mary Poppins (running until January 5)! A musical based on the stories of P.L. Travers and the Walt Disney film Original music and lyrics by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman Book by Julian Fellowes New songs and additional music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The Magical Broadway musical Watch Mary Poppins fly over the rooftops of London, and feel like a kid again! Remember, anything can happen if you let it. This family musical features the unforgettable songs from the popular Disney film-”A Spoonful of Sugar,” “Chim Chim Cher-ee,” “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”-plus some catchy new ones. Practically perfect in every way, the tale of everyone’s favourite magical nanny will sweep you off your feet.

Gateway Theatre presents The King and I 8pm @ Gateway Theatre (6500 Gilbert Rd., Richmond)
$49; other pricing in effect
Music by Richard Rodgers. Book and Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. Based on “Anna and the King of Siam” by Margaret Landon. Original Choreography by Jerome Robbins. Gateway Theatre Artistic Director Jovanni Sy makes his Vancouver stage debut as the King of Siam in this all new production of this Tony Award-winning smash. Audience favourite Barbara Tomasic (The Sound of Music) is Anna, hired to teach English and other Western ideas to the King’s many wives and many more children. Join us for lots of songs you love like “Getting to Know You,” “Shall We Dance?” and “Whistle A Happy Tune.” Gateway Theatre last produced The King and I in 2003 with John James Hong and Annabel Kershaw in the title roles. That production holds a Gateway record as our second highest selling show, after The Sound of Music. Performances running until December 31.

Photo Credit: Gateway Theatre

Photo Credit: Gateway Theatre

Ghost Light Projects Theatre presents Let’s Kill Grandma This Christmas 7pm @ Carousel Studio Theatre (Granville Island 1411 Cartwright St.)
$15-$45
Canadian premiere of the Off Broadway hit! Let’s Kill Grandma This Christmas by Brian Gianci offers something for everyone. Possessed by greed the family plots and schemes murder in order to get Grandma’s money. Let’s Kill Grandma This Christmas is a twisted black comedy that says there’s no place like six feet under for the holidays. Please note this play contains language which may not be suitable for all audiences… but frankly that’s to be expected when you’re trying to kill Grandma! Performances running until December 21.

December Donation Drive presented by Vancouver Lookout and Landsea Tours @ Harbour Centre (555 W Hastings St.)
Final Day! Supported by “Stuff the Bus” in the downtown area, all donations to The Kettle Society. From December 2 to December 20, donation drop box is located in the Atrium lobby of Harbour Centre Tower and on the Observation Deck of the Vancouver Lookout. Special thanks to Landsea Tours for buses around to pick up donations for The Ketttle Society in East Vancouver, supporting people with mental illness to lead healthier lives by promoting inclusion, awareness and providing housing, employment, advocacy and support services. While at Harbour Centre Mall, enter the Amazing Holiday Hunt contest to win “Experience Vancouver” Grand Prize, valued at $1000 with a special duplicate Grand Prize generously donated to The Kettle Society.

Arts Club Theatre Company presents The Santaland Diaries 8pm @ Revue Theatre (1601 Johnston St.)
Various ticket pricing
True Confessions of an Elf – From the popular humourist David Sedaris comes this merrily wicked tale of his tour of duty as an elf at Macy’s Santaland. From posts as Vomit Corner Elf to Water Cooler Elf to Cash Register Elf, Sedaris worked his way up the candy-cane ladder and lived to share his hysterical, behind-the-scenes anecdotes. Both outlandish and illuminating, this sardonic comedy is a holiday treat for adults. An Elfin Good Time for Mature Elves Only! This show is more naughty than nice—and less than politically correct!

Photo Credit: Arts ClubTheatre Company

Photo Credit: Arts Club Theatre Company

Burnaby Arts Gallery presents Volumes: Works in Paper 10am-4:30pm @ Burnaby Art Gallery (6344 Deer Lake Ave., Burnaby)
Admission by Donation
Volumes explores sculptural and structural works on (and ‘in’) paper, including installation and large-scale printmaking, painting, ceramics and paper-cut. Featuring works from the permanent collection by Pat Martin Bates, Myra Eadie, Bob Evermon, Margaret May, Teresa Ilene Redden, Douglas Quiring, and others, as well as new works by emerging artists Maggie Boyd, Graham Landin, Nicole Ondre and Jennifer Rose Sciarrino.

Off the Eaten Track presents Culinary Christmas Walking Tours in Cambie Village 5-7pm @ Benton Brother Fine Cheese (3432 Cambie St.)
$45
It’s that time of year again—time to eat, drink, be merry and struggle to find gifts for friends, family, and co-workers. Join Off The Eaten Track for a delicious 2 hour tour of festive Cambie Village where you will be treated to over 6 tasting samples and given the opportunity to shop for some unique and tasty gifts. Full of funky boutique shops and amazing locally owned restaurants, Cambie Village is a trendy neighbourhood with a small town feel. November 20 – December 22, 2013; Wed & Fri: 5-7pm | Sun: 4-6 pm

Christmas Queen: Improv Comedy Fairytale 7:30pm at Improv Centre (1502 Duranleau St., Granville Island)
$21; $26.50 including drink; other pricing in effect
Watch as our talented improvisors weave a magical Christmas story like you’ve never seen before. Each and every night the tale will take a different turn as you, the audience, help to save Christmas. Will the evil villain ruin this magical holiday season for the townsfolk? Will our reluctant hero return to save the day? Will the Christmas Queen awaken the spirit of Christmas in all of us? No matter your age, come down to The Improv Centre to watch your Christmas dreams come to life onstage.

Photo Credit: Vancouver TheatreSports League Facebook

Photo Credit: Vancouver TheatreSports League Facebook

Christmas at Urban Digs Farm 3-6pm @ Urban Diggs Farm (4992 Byrne Rd., Burnaby)
Last day! Urban Digs Farm First Christmas Farm Market, open from December 1st – 20th at the farm with everything you need to make the holidays happen including: Fresh cut local Christmas trees from Langley, organic local produce grown by us and other local farms, holiday baking from Robynn’s Kitchen, pickles & preserves including mincemeat, lemon curd, cranberry sauce, jams, jellies, dill & bread & butter pickles, chow chow, relish & more, fir boughs & holly for decorating, and farm animals wearing Santa hats. Warm up by the fire with a cup of hot chocolate or apple cider, visit with the farm animals and make some holiday memories. Bring your camera for pictures with Santa’s backup sleigh crew (our adorable pygmy goats) by donation to the food bank.

North Pole BC 3-6pm @ Lynn Valley Centre (1199 Lynn Valley Rd., North Vancouver)
$13.95-$22.50
North Pole BC is a family Christmas themed event providing a totally unique, interactive and fun experience for children and families. Visit with Santa, Mrs. Claus, Elves and be entertained by the interactive scenes and activities. North Pole BC has lots of interactive and visual scenes including: Gingerbread Bakery, Toy Workshop, The Toy Inventor, Mrs. Claus’s Story Time, Northern Lights Light Show.

VanDusen Botanical Garden presents Festival of Lights 2013 4:30-9pm @ VanDusen Botanical Garden (5251 Oak St.)z
$16.75
VanDusen Garden is decorated with 1.4million twinkling lights for a magical experience of Festival of Lights. Enjoy the twinkling lights and light show, take a stroll down Candy Cane Lane, hear the sweet sounds of caroling, take photos with Santa (Dec 11-24), and get in to the spirit of the season. Event runs until January 4, 2014 (closed December 25). Allow yourself at least an hour and a half to tour the lights. There is a Dancing Light show which takes place every half an hour beginning at 4:30pm. Be entertained by the Scandinavian Gnomes and the Shadow Puppet Show, take photos with Santa (Dec 11-24), make a wish at the “Make-A-Wish” candle grotto, see the Parade of Lego exhibit in the Make-A-Wish ‘Room of Joy’ and listen to our community choirs at 6:00pm and 7:30pm from Dec 11 to Dec 20 and featured choirs Dec 21 to Dec 23.

Photo Credit: City of Vancouver

Photo Credit: City of Vancouver

Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park open 11am-9pm @ Capilano Suspension Bridge Park (3735 Capilano Road, North Vancouver)
$65.00 Family, $31.95 Adult; other pricing in effect
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park’s popular holiday event, Canyon Lights, has a tall order this year – laying claim to the home of the world’s tallest living Christmas tree?! Standing 46.4m (152 feet) tall, this Douglas-fir will be adorned in thousands of sparkling lights. Though other communities claim to have the tallest living Christmas tree, Capilano’s 250 year old Douglas-fir rises above the competition. (In 2012, Ferndale, California claimed the tallest living Christmas tree on record at 150ft.) Park guests will also be dazzled by the thousands of lights glittering throughout the rainforest, across the Suspension Bridge and on Cliffwalk. A children’s scavenger hunt, gingerbread cookie decorating, sing-a-long carols with the holiday band and glass blowing with Malcolm Macfadyen are all back by popular demand! Canyon Lights runs Saturday, November 30, 2013 to Saturday, January 4, 2014. Park is closed Christmas Day. Park Canyon Lights tickets are valid all day with holiday activities beginning at 4:00pm. Capilano will be operating free round trip shuttle service from Canada Place. Partial proceeds from admission will be donated to the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund. Capilano will continue hosting community nights for local charities including Canuck Place, Special Olympics BC, Big Brothers, Big Sisters, North Shore Neighbourhood House, Easter Seals and Kids Up Front. BC Residents will receive a Annual BC Membership with their park entrance ticket.

The East Van H.A.M. (Holiday Artist Market!) 5-9pm @ Studio East (1480 Frances St.)
Free Admission or By Donation
A thoughtful, last minute gift show! The East Side HAM is for people who don’t like holiday artist markets.  What with the wreaths and holly and terrible seasonal tunes,  how can you make a thoughtful, personal gift choice, when all you  want to do is get the hell out of there. The East Side HAM is an opportunity to support local artists  and craftspeople, by buying gifts that have a story, are made  locally and sustainably, and show you care. Come see the recently opened Studio East and enjoy a curated  selection of gifts and goods made by members of your community,  presented in a relaxed and intimate Holiday Artists Market.Music, food and beverages on offer, but no tinsel or fruitcake, we promise.

 


Saturday, December 21st

 

20th Annual Winter Solstice Lantern Festival 6-10pm @ Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden
$5
The Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden and the Secret Lantern Society are proud to present the Winter Solstice Festival. Come bring light into the world on the longest, darkest night of the year! For thousands of years, cultures around the world have celebrated the Winter Solstice – the time when winter reaches its depths, and when days begin to grow longer as nature heralds the spring. In China, the Winter Solstice celebration (dong zhi) is a time when family and friends gather together, exchange gifts, eat, drink and laugh long into the deep dark night. Come together with friends and family! Warm your bellies with our signature Dragon Spice holiday tea and a delicious hot bun, and warm your hearts with the breathtaking landscape. Lantern artists reimagine the beauty of the Garden with whimsical and spectacular pieces while diverse performers take the stage throughout the evening.

Photo Credit: Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Chinese Garden

Photo Credit: Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Chinese Garden

Heritage Holiday at Fort Langley National Historic Site 10am-5pm @ Fort Langley National Historic Site of Canada (23433 Mavis Ave., Fort Langley)
$7.80; other pricing in effect
Escape the holiday bustle and make memories with your family and friends at Fort Langley National Historic Site! Enjoy a traditional holiday atmosphere, crafts, and stories. At 11 am, hear fascinating stories about Fort Langley’s past with “Faces of the Fort.” From 11 am – 3:30 pm, enjoy complimentary hot chocolate. At 2 pm, taste freshly roasted chestnuts and hear stories from the 1827-1830 Fort Langley journals. At 3 pm, join a Carolling Bonfire. Runs until January 5 (closed Dec. 25, 26, Jan 1).

4Cats Arts Studio presents Shop Til You Drop Portrait & Ornament Workshop 9:15am-12:15pm & 12:40pm-3:40pm @ 4Cats Queensbury (640 Queensbury Ave., North Vancouver)
$65
Whomever you decide to paint will love this portrait created by their favourite artist – your child! Using professional art materials, let our smiling curators guide your child in creating a treasured keepsake for someone special. Create a wonderful winter ornament to decorate your house with holiday cheer! Sculpt using professional clay tools & learn hand building techniques.

Winter Harp 2013 7:30pm @ St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church (1022 Nelson St.)
$37.25
Winter Harp . . . a Christmas masterpiece. Three beautiful harps combine with flutes, rare medieval instruments, percussion, poetry and song to wrap you snugly in the silken cloak of Christmas. The musicians, in gorgeous medieval attire, perform rare carols and familiar carols which will have your heart singing. Back by popular demand are legendary harpist Kim Robertson and acclaimed singer and harper Roger Helfrick whose voice is pure gold. This year Winter Harp celebrates its 20th anniversary — 20 years of standing ovations, rave reviews and a record number of sold-out concerts. Over the years, tens of thousands of people have made attending Winter Harp their annual tradition. Now that is something to celebrate!

Photo Credit: Winter Harp

Photo Credit: Winter Harp

Vancity Theatre presents Holiday Film Pass various times @ Vancity Theatre (1181 Seymour St.)
$50
First day! See as many films as you like at the Vancity Theatre this holiday season (December 21, 2013 – January 2, 2014). Pass is on sale until December 23. Visit Vancouver International Film Festival for detailed schedule of daily films.

2013 Carol Ships Celebration 8pm @ Panorama Park, Deep Cove
Free admission
Join to celebrate a North Vancouver tradition! The Carol Ships, with their holiday themed decorations and festive lights, will sail past the shores of Panorama Park on Saturday December 21st at 8:00pm. Sing and dance to musical entertainment by The Bobcats! Enjoy warm refreshments by the members of the Seycove Secondary Student Council, roving performers, free holiday craft workshops, face painting, and a blazing bonfire. Santa himself may even stop by! Donations of food in support of the Harvest Project will be gratefully accepted. Join your neighbours for a stroll down to the Cove and share in some holiday cheer!

Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker 2pm & 7:30pm @ The Centre in Vancouver (777 Homer St.)
$39.75-$91
Goh Ballet’s critically acclaimed The Nutcracker will make a triumphant return to the Centre in Vancouver from December 14-22, 2013. Celebrating its fifth year, this classical rendition of a magical holiday tradition is a must-see family favourite. Principal Dancers from the renowned Royal Danish Ballet will perform to live musical accompaniment from the Vancouver Opera Orchestra alongside a dazzling cast of more than 200 dancers. With choreography by Emmy-award winning dance luminary Anna-Marie Holmes, this sparkling production will delight all ages. Tickets through Ticketmaster or by calling 1.855.985.2787.

GOH Ballet - The Nutcracker

GOH Ballet – The Nutcracker

Presentation House Theatre presents Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen 2pm & 8pm @ Presentation House Theatre (333 Chesterfield Ave., North Vancouver)
$28.00; other pricing in effect
Final performance! Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen is a fresh holiday musical for the whole family (age 7+). Feeling underappreciated at the North Pole, Mrs. Claus discovers a magical recipe for drawing families together. Set on the cusp of the 1960s, when modern Christmas really came of age, the show takes the audience on a tuneful ride filled with charm, laughter and a fresh look at the hustle, bustle and real worth of a family holiday. There are elves, laughter, song and dance and a chance for the audience to get “hands on” in the kitchen of the world’s most famous workshop!

Winter Farmers Market 10am-2pm @ Nat Bailey Stadium (West 30th Ave. & Ontario St.), Vancouver
Free admission
Calling all local food enthusiasts!  Find delicious locally made food and enjoy knowing where your food comes from and who cultivates it.  Every Saturday through April 26, 2014.  Visit the website for detailed parking and access information.

The Eastside Flea – December Holiday Market! 10am-4pm @ Wise Hall
Admission by Donation
It’s always around the beginning of December that you start to panic… you haven’t thought of a really great gift idea for that person who has everything! Head down to the Flea for local handmade quality craftsmen goods, oddball treasures, cool posters & cards, unique vintage clothing and way more.

Photo Credit: Eastside Flea Facebook

Photo Credit: Eastside Flea | Facebook

Firehall Arts Centre presents Hotel Bethlehem 5pm & 8pm @ Firehall Arts Centre (280 Cordova St. E)
Various pricing
Back in time for the holiday season, this wildly funny Christmas satire dares to deconstruct the Nativity Story, playfully posing questions like, why was The Inn so full? Who would turn away a very pregnant woman? Award-winning playwright Drew McCreadie’s outrageous and insightful comedy for adults takes an inside look at what actually happened at the Inn that infamous silent night. Warning: wacky jokes and crude puns may induce laughter. Running until December 22.

Artisans Fair 12-5pm @ River Market at Westminster Quay
Free admission
The Artisans Fair is the perfect place for you to shop for that unique, handmade item.  Our artists range from soapstone carvers to textile artists to gardeners to jewellers.  They’re seasoned crafters to new artisans and everything in between. Unique gifts, the ultimate in local shopping and supporting small businesses…what better way to spend your Saturday?

Cavalia’s Odysseo 2pm & 8pm @ Cavalia – Under the Big Top in Olympic Village (299 West 1st Ave.)
$54.50-$229.50; other pricing in effect
The internationally acclaimed Cavalia pushes the limits of live entertainment with its newest production that is now touring the globe. Cavalia Odysseo is a theatrical experience, an ode to horse and man that marries the equestrian arts, awe inspiring acrobatics and high-tech theatrical effects. Set under a 38-meter tall White Big Top, audiences will be transported around the world as more than 50 horses and an international cast play and demonstrate their intimate bond. The 1,393 square meter stage features a real carousel and a magically appearing 302,000-litre lake in front of a stunning video backdrop the size of three IMAX screens. Odysseo is a two-hour dream that will move the heart and touch the soul. It is an evening that the audience will never forget. Runs until January 5.

Photo Credit: Cavalia Inc.

Photo Credit: Cavalia Inc.

Britannia Mine Museum presents Guided Underground Experience 10am-3pm @ Britannia Mine Museum (1 Forbes Way, Britannia Beach)
$21.50; other pricing in effect
Looking for something to do over the holidays? Britannia Mine Museum is open all through the festive season, except for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Come for a guided underground experience: take a trip similar to miners in 1914, see demonstrations of actual working drills and equipment, hear the stories of early mining efforts, browse the exhibits and pan for real gold. In order to meet your Interpreter and desired tour time, please arrive 15 minutes prior to tour time. Tours are offered on a first come, first served basis. Running until December 31.
Saturday – Sunday: Tours are offered every 1 hour between 10am-3:00pm (last tour).

12 Days of Christmas at Robson Square Ice Rink 9am-11pm @ Robson Square
Free skating if you have your own skates; rentals are $4
The 12 days of Christmas are a festive time of year at the Robson Square Ice Rink. Bring your family and friends down to the ice rink this holiday season for a music series as local musicians will perform their holiday favorites from December 13th to the 24th. Tonight’s performers are The Charles Dickens Carollers from 3-5pm and then JC and The Wailin’ Wassailers from 6-9pm.
The fun outdoor skating rink at Robson Square is open for another winter season until February 28, 2014. The ice rink is open 7 days a week: Sunday-Thursday 9am-9pm, Friday & Saturday 9am-11pm. Helmets are mandatory for children 12 years and under. There are skate and helment rentals, and a concession booth on site. Cash only. Skate rentals end 30minutes before closing. Dress warmly and have fun!

Bright Nights at the Stanley Park Miniature Train 11am – 11pm @ Stanley Park Train Plaza
$11; other pricing in effect
It’s that wonderfully festive time of year again! This wildly popular event will be running from December 5th to January 5th. Come see this loveable scamp’s antics and mishaps, as you ride the beautifully decorated Bright Nights train through, our Stanley Park forest. Perfect for all ages. Advance tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster (online or at Tourism Vancouver’s Tickets Tonight) or on site the day off. Tickets have specific train times.
Hours of Operation:
Friday – Sunday 11am-3pm Matinee train (No live actors during matinee trains)
Friday – Sunday 3pm – 11pm (Ticket sales begin at 12 noon)
Walk around the plaza to enjoy more lights and holiday activities. There may be a special guest in a red suit…

Photo Credit: Sunshine Brit | Flickr

Photo Credit: Sunshine Brit | Flickr

Pacific Theatre presents Christmas Presence 2pm & 8pm @ Pacific Theatre (1440 W 12th Ave.)
$31.50; other pricing in effect
Final performance! A collection of songs and stories featuring a rotating line up of local musicians and actors that dates back to its beginnings 30 years ago. Pacific Theatre is proud to present Christmas Presence, a collection of songs and stories for the holiday season. An ad-hoc gathering of musicians and actors who meet day-of to trade songs and choose readings, Christmas Presence is both everything you might expect from a holiday show, as well as the exact opposite. Setting aside the lavish sets and costumes that dominate the season for what Artistic Director Ron Reed likes to call “the un-slickest Christmas show in town.” The vibe is that of a family gathering that has burst into song – if you happen to have a family of diverse and talented musicians who harbour an equal love for David Sedaris, Stuart McLean, and Madeleine L’Engle.

Gateway Theatre presents The King and I 2pm & 8pm @ Gateway Theatre (6500 Gilbert Rd., Richmond)
$49; other pricing in effect
Music by Richard Rodgers. Book and Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. Based on “Anna and the King of Siam” by Margaret Landon. Original Choreography by Jerome Robbins. Gateway Theatre Artistic Director Jovanni Sy makes his Vancouver stage debut as the King of Siam in this all new production of this Tony Award-winning smash. Audience favourite Barbara Tomasic (The Sound of Music) is Anna, hired to teach English and other Western ideas to the King’s many wives and many more children. Join us for lots of songs you love like “Getting to Know You,” “Shall We Dance?” and “Whistle A Happy Tune.” Gateway Theatre last produced The King and I in 2003 with John James Hong and Annabel Kershaw in the title roles. That production holds a Gateway record as our second highest selling show, after The Sound of Music. Performances running until December 31.

Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park open 11am-9pm @ Capilano Suspension Bridge Park (3735 Capilano Road, North Vancouver)
$65.00 Family, $31.95 Adult; other pricing in effect
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park’s popular holiday event, Canyon Lights, has a tall order this year – laying claim to the home of the world’s tallest living Christmas tree?! Standing 46.4m (152 feet) tall, this Douglas-fir will be adorned in thousands of sparkling lights. Though other communities claim to have the tallest living Christmas tree, Capilano’s 250 year old Douglas-fir rises above the competition. (In 2012, Ferndale, California claimed the tallest living Christmas tree on record at 150ft.) Park guests will also be dazzled by the thousands of lights glittering throughout the rainforest, across the Suspension Bridge and on Cliffwalk. A children’s scavenger hunt, gingerbread cookie decorating, sing-a-long carols with the holiday band and glass blowing with Malcolm Macfadyen are all back by popular demand! Canyon Lights runs until Saturday, January 4, 2014. Park is closed Christmas Day. Park Canyon Lights tickets are valid all day with holiday activities beginning at 4:00pm. Capilano will be operating free round trip shuttle service from Canada Place. Partial proceeds from admission will be donated to the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund. Capilano will continue hosting community nights for local charities including Canuck Place, Special Olympics BC, Big Brothers, Big Sisters, North Shore Neighbourhood House, Easter Seals and Kids Up Front. BC Residents will receive a Annual BC Membership with their park entrance ticket.

Photo Credit: Capilano Suspension Bridge

Photo Credit: Capilano Suspension Bridge

Scuba Claus at the Vancouver Aquarium open 10am-5pm @ Vancouver Aquarium
$25; other pricing in effect
Santa Claus may fly through the sky but Scuba Claus prefers a dive and high-five! In case you’re wondering who Scuba Claus is, you’re in for a treat – Scuba Claus visits the Aquarium every year to swim merrily amongst the salmon, rockfish, sturgeon and sea stars in the Strait of Georgia exhibit. Attend this dive show and you may just be lucky enough to get a high-five through the glass from Scuba Claus himself. Don’t Miss Out! Scuba Claus is only here for the month of December, so be sure to visit him soon. Scuba Claus will be diving daily during the weekends, as well as between Dec. 21-24. Visit our daily schedule for more information on Scuba Claus, as well as other activities and programs.

Holiday Hi-Light Festival 6pm-9pm @ Park & Tilford Gardens (333 Brooksbank Ave., North Vancouver)
Admission by Donation
The holiday Hi-Light Festival at Park & Tilford Gardens is one of the North Shore’s most majestic festival of lights with over 50,000 lights on display. Open nightly to December 31st. Santa himself will be visiting on Friday and Saturday evenings from 6pm-9pm until Christmas. 100% proceeds to the City and District of North Vancouver Firefighters Charitable Society.

Shine, Shop, & Dine Trolley Tour 4:30pm-9:30pm @ Georgia St. & Broughton St.
Admission by Donation
Last day! This festive season it is the West End’s turn to shine. In support of the St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation, the West End BIA and Robson Street are joining forces to kick off the holiday season in style with the Shine, Shop and Dine Trolley Tour. Anchored by the St. Paul’s Lights of Hope, residents and visitors alike can hop aboard the free trolleys from any of one 12 site Saturdays from 4:30pm to 9:30pm from November 23 to December 21. For five consecutive Saturdays, Shine, Shop & Dine will highlight the amazing work of St. Paul’s Hospital and the wonderful variety of shopping and dining found in the West End. Running at 10 minute intervals, three trolleys will take passengers on an animated hop on/hop off tour following the historic trolley routes along Davie, Denman, Robson and Burrard Streets. Decorative lighting displays will be set up around the route for passengers to enjoy as part of their holiday experience. Who knows, a few regular West End personalities might just sashay by or a sing a tune for you.

Photo Credit: West End BIA

Photo Credit: West End BIA

Arts Club Theatre Company presents It’s Snowing on Saltspring 2pm & 8pm @ Granville Island Stage (1585 Johnston Street)
Various ticket pricing
It’s Snowing on Saltspring By Nicola Cavendish. A Homegrown Christmas Tale Arts Club Classic. It’s Christmas Eve on Saltspring Island. The stockings aren’t hung by the chimney with care and disenchanted Bill Bannister hopes that St. Nick won’t be there. Will it take a reindeer-guided trip to the North Pole for Bill to rediscover the spirit of Christmas? Performances run until December 24.

Vancouver Christmas Market 11am-9pm @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza (650 Hamilton St.)
$6; other pricing in effect
The Vancouver Christmas Market is an annual can’t-miss Vancouver Christmas event running from November 22 to December 24, 2013. More than just a craft fair, this authentic German Christmas Market creates the perfect atmosphere to mix and mingle with friends and family, strolling through romantic rows of little wooden huts decorated in pine branches and illuminated with strings of little white lights. In each hut discover terrific food and drink and a wonderful array of Christmas gifts. During the pre-Christmas season, the Market is the perfect destination for combining an outing with friends and family with some Christmas shopping. Business people will find it a fun meeting place for a quick bite during lunch time or a drink after work (be sure to use our 2 for 1 Lunch Pass!). With a wide variety of cultural activities and entertainment events, it also becomes a place for people to enjoy and mingle before a night on the town. A special children’s area known as the Kids’ Market will give youngsters the chance to make their own Christmas gifts and ride downtown Vancouver’s only Christmas Carousel.

Christmas at FlyOver Canada 10am-9pm @ FlyOver Canada (201-999 Canada Place) $19.95
Help Santa Save Christmas at FlyOver Canada this holiday season! Enjoy a Christmas themed pre-show and pre-boarding experience including the Ultimate Flying Ride – FlyOver Canada. Share in the magic of Christmas at our free outdoor Christmas Plaza featuring: Live entertainment including holiday music favorites and more, Santa’s Artic Art Workshop display with live ice carving shows every Friday at 5pm commencing from December 6 onwards, Delicious tastes of Christmas with waffles, drinks and candied nuts by Leonidas Belgian Chocolates and Swiss Style Nuts. December 25 closed at 5pm & December 25 closed.

Photo Credit: FlyOver Canada Facebook

Photo Credit: FlyOver Canada | Facebook

Burnaby Village Museum presents Illuminations at Heritage Christmas 12:00pm – 9pm @ Burnaby Village Museum (6501 Deer Lake Ave., Burnaby)
Free admission
Stroll through the streets of the Village to enjoy the traditional sights and sounds of Christmases past—wreaths, cedar swags and seasonal displays. Unique and shimming lights display are throughout the Village including the opportunity for you to create your own magical holiday show with sound-reactive lights at the bandstand. Make a noise then watch the lights transform. Over 400 lights twinkle and change colours in response to sound. Come try it out! Pick up the new Twelve Days of Christmas Scavenger Hunt sheet and start exploring for the answers. There’s a new menagerie of transformed Eco-sculptures this season. They’re decoratively lit and beautifully adorned. Look for a grouping of eagles with their artist-made playable instruments. Check the online schedule for special seasonal entertainment including live theatre shows, carollers, artisans, musicians and more. Running from November 23 – December 13 (12pm-4:30pm) and December 14 – January 3, 2014 (12pm-9pm). Closed December 24 & 25.

Dundarave Festival of Lights noon-dusk @ Dundarave Beach, West Vancouver
Free admission
Dundarave Christmas Fair – Fabulous, festive and absolutely free, the Dundarave Festival is your passport to Christmas as you may never have seen it before – the season of light, love and joy that leaves no one out in the cold. Bring everyone you love and connect with the exuberant, eclectic and wild heart of Christmas at the Dundarave Festival. Running from November 30-January 4.

Grouse Mountain presents Peak of Christmas 2013, Celebrate the Magic of Snow! open 9am-10pm @ Grouse Mountain, The Peak of Vancouver
Various ticket prices
Treat the kids (or the kid in you) to our annual holiday festivities begin November 23. Bring your family to Santa’s Workshop and meet reindeer, or take a sleigh-ride through our mystical alpine forest. You can also experience the tranquil beauty of skating on our 8,000 square foot mountaintop Ice Skating Pond, surrounded by snow-topped trees. Learn more about Santa’s reindeer at our daily ranger interpretive talks or have a digital photo taken with Santa to keep a memento of your Peak of Christmas visit! Visit the Theatre in the Sky to enjoy classic Christmas movies on our large high-definition screen. Or listen to joyful Christmas carols sung by the enchanting voices of Vancouver choirs. Walk through the spectacular SOS Children’s Village Gingerbread Village in the Spirit Gallery. These fabulous Peak of Christmas activities are all complimentary with your Grouse Mountain Alpine Experience ticket, Annual Membership, Winter Season Pass, or Lift Ticket. Peak of Christmas Family Ticket is also available. Snow much fun with just one ticket!

Photo Credit: Grouse Mountain

Photo Credit: Grouse Mountain

Christmas Queen: Improv Comedy Fairytale 7:30pm at Improv Centre (1502 Duranleau St., Granville Island)
$21; $26.50 including drink; other pricing in effect
Final Performance! Watch as our talented improvisors weave a magical Christmas story like you’ve never seen before. Each and every night the tale will take a different turn as you, the audience, help to save Christmas. Will the evil villain ruin this magical holiday season for the townsfolk? Will our reluctant hero return to save the day? Will the Christmas Queen awaken the spirit of Christmas in all of us? No matter your age, come down to The Improv Centre to watch your Christmas dreams come to life onstage.

North Pole BC 10am-6pm @ Lynn Valley Centre (1199 Lynn Valley Rd., North Vancouver)
$13.95-$22.50
North Pole BC is a family Christmas themed event providing a totally unique, interactive and fun experience for children and families. Visit with Santa, Mrs. Claus, Elves and be entertained by the interactive scenes and activities. North Pole BC has lots of interactive and visual scenes including: Gingerbread Bakery, Toy Workshop, The Toy Inventor, Mrs. Claus’s Story Time, Northern Lights Light Show.

Arts Club Theatre Company presents Mary Poppins 2pm & 8pm@ Stanley Alliance Industrial Stage (2750 Granville St.)
$29-$119
Another night of Mary Poppins (running until January 5)! A musical based on the stories of P.L. Travers and the Walt Disney film Original music and lyrics by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman Book by Julian Fellowes New songs and additional music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The Magical Broadway musical Watch Mary Poppins fly over the rooftops of London, and feel like a kid again! Remember, anything can happen if you let it. This family musical features the unforgettable songs from the popular Disney film-”A Spoonful of Sugar,” “Chim Chim Cher-ee,” “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”-plus some catchy new ones. Practically perfect in every way, the tale of everyone’s favourite magical nanny will sweep you off your feet.

Photo Credit: Arts Club Theatre Company

Photo Credit: Arts Club Theatre Company

The East Van H.A.M. (Holiday Artist Market!) 11am-6pm @ Studio East (1480 Frances St.)
Free Admission or By Donation
A thoughtful, last minute gift show! The East Side HAM is for people who don’t like holiday artist markets.  What with the wreaths and holly and terrible seasonal tunes,  how can you make a thoughtful, personal gift choice, when all you  want to do is get the hell out of there. The East Side HAM is an opportunity to support local artists  and craftspeople, by buying gifts that have a story, are made  locally and sustainably, and show you care. Come see the recently opened Studio East and enjoy a curated  selection of gifts and goods made by members of your community,  presented in a relaxed and intimate Holiday Artists Market.Music, food and beverages on offer, but no tinsel or fruitcake, we promise.

The Cultch presents An East Van Panto 2pm & 7pm @ York Theatre (639 Commercial Dr., Vancouver)
Various ticket pricing
Get ready for a wild ride! Theatre Replacement (Dress me up in your live) returns to blow the roof off the brand new York Theatre with An East Van Panto. With words and music by Amiel Gladstone and Veda Hille (Do You Want What I Have Got? A Craigslist Cantata), this upside down version of the classic holiday pantomime-complete with bad guys, good guys, hissing and cheering-will be a sweet and whacked-out treat for the whole family.

Ghost Light Projects Theatre presents Let’s Kill Grandma This Christmas 1pm & 7pm @ Carousel Studio Theatre (Granville Island 1411 Cartwright St.)
$15-$45
Final Performance! Canadian premiere of the Off Broadway hit! Let’s Kill Grandma This Christmas by Brian Gianci offers something for everyone. Possessed by greed the family plots and schemes murder in order to get Grandma’s money. Let’s Kill Grandma This Christmas is a twisted black comedy that says there’s no place like six feet under for the holidays. Please note this play contains language which may not be suitable for all audiences… but frankly that’s to be expected when you’re trying to kill Grandma! Performances running until December 21.

Photo Credit: Carousel Studio Theatre

Photo Credit: Carousel Studio Theatre

 


 

Sunday, December 22nd

 

2013 Blues for Christmas Marathon 2pm & 8pm @ Vancouver FanClub (1050 Granville St.)
$18.75
It’s Blues for Christmas time again and we are excited to invite you to the 28th anniversary of this annual Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society food & fundraiser. Every year, the great community of Vancouver’s blues musicians come forward, donating their time to create a musically satisfying event. This year is no exception. The landscape for the blues community in Vancouver is changing with new artists bringing their own distinct style to the blues music scene. With Blues For Christmas featuring two distinct shows this year, we are beginning a new phase by bringing in some young blues artists who we think have a very bright future ahead of them. We look forward to seeing one and all at the 28th celebration of the Blues For Christmas Marathon!
Afternoon Show (doors @ 1pm): Dalannah Gail Bowen  Jason Buie  Gary Comeau & Tim Hearsey  Kathy Frank  Steve Kozak  Willie McCalder  James “Buddy” Rogers Whitefeather
Evening Show (doors @ 7pm): Big City Soul  Chaplyn  David “Boxcar” Gates  Hell’s Gate Blues Band  Incognito w/Alita Dupray & Nadine States. Tickets $18.75 in advance or $22 at the door.

Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker 2pm @ The Centre in Vancouver (777 Homer St.)
$39.75-$91
Final Performance! Goh Ballet’s critically acclaimed The Nutcracker will make a triumphant return to the Centre in Vancouver from December 14-22, 2013. Celebrating its fifth year, this classical rendition of a magical holiday tradition is a must-see family favourite. Principal Dancers from the renowned Royal Danish Ballet will perform to live musical accompaniment from the Vancouver Opera Orchestra alongside a dazzling cast of more than 200 dancers. With choreography by Emmy-award winning dance luminary Anna-Marie Holmes, this sparkling production will delight all ages. Tickets through Ticketmaster or by calling 1.855.985.2787.

Photo Credit: Ticketmaster The Nutcracker

Photo Credit: Ticketmaster | The Nutcracker

Cavalia’s Odysseo 1pm & 7pm @ Cavalia – Under the Big Top in Olympic Village (299 West 1st Ave.)
$54.50-$229.50; other pricing in effect
The internationally acclaimed Cavalia pushes the limits of live entertainment with its newest production that is now touring the globe. Cavalia Odysseo is a theatrical experience, an ode to horse and man that marries the equestrian arts, awe inspiring acrobatics and high-tech theatrical effects. Set under a 38-meter tall White Big Top, audiences will be transported around the world as more than 50 horses and an international cast play and demonstrate their intimate bond. The 1,393 square meter stage features a real carousel and a magically appearing 302,000-litre lake in front of a stunning video backdrop the size of three IMAX screens. Odysseo is a two-hour dream that will move the heart and touch the soul. It is an evening that the audience will never forget.

Off the Eaten Track presents Culinary Christmas Walking Tours in Cambie Village 4-6pm @ Benton Brother Fine Cheese (3432 Cambie St.)
$45
Final day! It’s that time of year again—time to eat, drink, be merry and struggle to find gifts for friends, family, and co-workers. Join Off The Eaten Track for a delicious 2 hour tour of festive Cambie Village where you will be treated to over 6 tasting samples and given the opportunity to shop for some unique and tasty gifts. Full of funky boutique shops and amazing locally owned restaurants, Cambie Village is a trendy neighbourhood with a small town feel. November 20 – December 22, 2013; Wed & Fri: 5-7pm | Sun: 4-6 pm.

Britannia Mine Museum presents Guided Underground Experience open 9am-5pm @ Britannia Mine Museum (1 Forbes Way, Britannia Beach)
$21.50; other pricing in effect
Looking for something to do over the holidays? Britannia Mine Museum is open all through the festive season, except for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Come for a guided underground experience: take a trip similar to miners in 1914, see demonstrations of actual working drills and equipment, hear the stories of early mining efforts, browse the exhibits and pan for real gold. In order to meet your Interpreter and desired tour time, please arrive 15 minutes prior to tour time. Tours are offered on a first come, first served basis. Running until December 31.
Saturday – Sunday: Tours are offered every 1 hour between 10am-3:00pm (last tour).

Heritage Holiday at Fort Langley National Historic Site 10am-5pm @ Fort Langley National Historic Site of Canada (23433 Mavis Ave., Fort Langley)
$7.80; other pricing in effect
Escape the holiday bustle and make memories with your family and friends at Fort Langley National Historic Site! Enjoy a traditional holiday atmosphere, crafts, and stories. At 11 am, hear fascinating stories about Fort Langley’s past with “Faces of the Fort.” From 11 am – 3:30 pm, enjoy complimentary hot chocolate. At 2 pm, taste freshly roasted chestnuts and hear stories from the 1827-1830 Fort Langley journals. At 3 pm, join a Carolling Bonfire. Runs until January 5 (closed Dec. 25, 26, Jan 1).

Photo Credit: Fort Langley National Historic Site

Photo Credit: Fort Langley National Historic Site

Firehall Arts Centre presents Hotel Bethlehem 3pm @ Firehall Arts Centre (280 Cordova St. E)
Various pricing
Back in time for the holiday season, this wildly funny Christmas satire dares to deconstruct the Nativity Story, playfully posing questions like, why was The Inn so full? Who would turn away a very pregnant woman? Award-winning playwright Drew McCreadie’s outrageous and insightful comedy for adults takes an inside look at what actually happened at the Inn that infamous silent night. Warning: wacky jokes and crude puns may induce laughter. Running until December 22.

North Pole BC  11:30am-4:30pm @ Lynn Valley Centre (1199 Lynn Valley Rd., North Vancouver)
$13.95-$22.50
North Pole BC is a family Christmas themed event providing a totally unique, interactive and fun experience for children and families. Visit with Santa, Mrs. Claus, Elves and be entertained by the interactive scenes and activities. North Pole BC has lots of interactive and visual scenes including: Gingerbread Bakery, Toy Workshop, The Toy Inventor, Mrs. Claus’s Story Time, Northern Lights Light Show.

12 Days of Christmas at Robson Square Ice Rink 9am-9pm @ Robson Square
Free skating if you have your own skates; rentals are $4
The 12 days of Christmas are a festive time of year at the Robson Square Ice Rink. Bring your family and friends down to the ice rink this holiday season for a music series as local musicians will perform their holiday favorites from December 13th to the 24th. Tonight’s performers are Santa’s Brass from 3-5pm then Caviar & Lace from 6-9pm.
The fun outdoor skating rink at Robson Square is open for another winter season until February 28, 2014. The ice rink is open 7 days a week: Sunday-Thursday 9am-9pm, Friday & Saturday 9am-11pm. Helmets are mandatory for children 12 years and under. There are skate and helment rentals, and a concession booth on site. Cash only. Skate rentals end 30minutes before closing. Dress warmly and have fun!

Photo Credit: Vancity Buzz

Photo Credit: Vancity Buzz

Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park open 11am-9pm @ Capilano Suspension Bridge Park (3735 Capilano Road, North Vancouver)
$65.00 Family, $31.95 Adult; other pricing in effect
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park’s popular holiday event, Canyon Lights, has a tall order this year – laying claim to the home of the world’s tallest living Christmas tree?! Standing 46.4m (152 feet) tall, this Douglas-fir will be adorned in thousands of sparkling lights. Though other communities claim to have the tallest living Christmas tree, Capilano’s 250 year old Douglas-fir rises above the competition. (In 2012, Ferndale, California claimed the tallest living Christmas tree on record at 150ft.) Park guests will also be dazzled by the thousands of lights glittering throughout the rainforest, across the Suspension Bridge and on Cliffwalk, the Park’s newest attraction. A children’s scavenger hunt, gingerbread cookie decorating, sing-a-long carols with the holiday band and glass blowing with Malcolm Macfadyen are all back by popular demand! Canyon Lights runs Saturday, November 30, 2013 to Saturday, January 4, 2014. Park is closed Christmas Day. Park hours are 11:00am – 9:00pm. Canyon Lights tickets are valid all day with holiday activities beginning at 4:00pm. Capilano will be operating free round trip shuttle service from Canada Place. Partial proceeds from admission will be donated to the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund. Capilano will continue hosting community nights for local charities including Canuck Place, Special Olympics BC, Big Brothers, Big Sisters, North Shore Neighbourhood House, Easter Seals and Kids Up Front. BC Residents will receive a Annual BC Membership with their park entrance ticket.

Winter Solstice Craft Fair 12-5pm @ River Market at Westminster Quay
Free admission
Last minute christmas shopping? Shop local artisans during the Winter Solstice Craft Fair. Including artisans like: Scry by Mirage – handmade luxurious Victorian shawls and accessories Coze Design – hand made make up pouches, accessories, throws and pillows Bijou – Glass bead jewellery Owl hats by Mary JN Leathercraft.

Board Game Meet-up 11m-6pm @ River Market at Westminster Quay
Free admission
Every Sunday, join us on the 2nd Floor at River Market for Sunday board games! This all-ages meet up is a great place to meet friends. Bring your games and lets have a great time!

Scuba Claus at the Vancouver Aquarium open 10am-5pm @ Vancouver Aquarium
$25; other pricing in effect
Santa Claus may fly through the sky but Scuba Claus prefers a dive and high-five! In case you’re wondering who Scuba Claus is, you’re in for a treat – Scuba Claus visits the Aquarium every year to swim merrily amongst the salmon, rockfish, sturgeon and sea stars in the Strait of Georgia exhibit. Attend this dive show and you may just be lucky enough to get a high-five through the glass from Scuba Claus himself. Don’t Miss Out! Scuba Claus is only here for the month of December, so be sure to visit him soon. Scuba Claus will be diving daily during the weekends, as well as between Dec. 21-24. Visit our daily schedule for more information on Scuba Claus, as well as other activities and programs.

Photo Credit: Vancouver Aquarium

Photo Credit: Vancouver Aquarium

Gateway Theatre presents The King and I 2pm & 8pm @ Gateway Theatre (6500 Gilbert Rd., Richmond)
$49; other pricing in effect
Music by Richard Rodgers. Book and Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. Based on “Anna and the King of Siam” by Margaret Landon. Original Choreography by Jerome Robbins. Gateway Theatre Artistic Director Jovanni Sy makes his Vancouver stage debut as the King of Siam in this all new production of this Tony Award-winning smash. Audience favourite Barbara Tomasic (The Sound of Music) is Anna, hired to teach English and other Western ideas to the King’s many wives and many more children. Join us for lots of songs you love like “Getting to Know You,” “Shall We Dance?” and “Whistle A Happy Tune.” Gateway Theatre last produced The King and I in 2003 with John James Hong and Annabel Kershaw in the title roles. That production holds a Gateway record as our second highest selling show, after The Sound of Music. Performances running until December 31.

Arts Club Theatre Company presents Mary Poppins 2pm @ Stanley Alliance Industrial Stage (2750 Granville St.)
$89-$119
Another night of Mary Poppins (running until January 5)! A musical based on the stories of P.L. Travers and the Walt Disney film Original music and lyrics by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman Book by Julian Fellowes New songs and additional music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The Magical Broadway musical Watch Mary Poppins fly over the rooftops of London, and feel like a kid again! Remember, anything can happen if you let it. This family musical features the unforgettable songs from the popular Disney film-”A Spoonful of Sugar,” “Chim Chim Cher-ee,” “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”-plus some catchy new ones. Practically perfect in every way, the tale of everyone’s favourite magical nanny will sweep you off your feet.

Christmas at Canada Place 10am-7pm @ Canada Place Cruise Ship Terminal (999 Canada Place)
Free admission
Enjoy Christmas in Canada undercover in the Canada Place Cruise Ship Terminal. It’s your chance to share your favourite Canadian Christmas memories and make new ones. to enjoy Christmas in Canada undercover in the Canada Place Cruise Ship Terminal. All these great Canadian holiday activities to the Waterfront: Skating Rink sponsored by Northwest Territories generously provided by Park Royal, Holiday Train sponsored by Park Roya,l Historic Woodwards Windows, Santa’s Worskhop, Curling, Festive performances, Avenue of Christmas Trees, Fill a Container with Dreams, and Winter Waterfront District. Visit Canada Place from various hours December 1 – 31 (Closed Dec. 25).

Photo Credit: Port Metro Vancouver: Christmas at Canada Place

Photo Credit: Port Metro Vancouver – Christmas at Canada Place

Christmas at FlyOver Canada 10am-9pm @ FlyOver Canada (201 – 999 Canada Place)
$19.95
Help Santa Save Christmas at FlyOver Canada this holiday season! Enjoy a Christmas themed pre-show and pre-boarding experience including the Ultimate Flying Ride – FlyOver Canada. Share in the magic of Christmas at our free outdoor Christmas Plaza featuring: Live entertainment including holiday music favorites and more, Santa’s Artic Art Workshop display with live ice carving shows every Friday at 5pm commencing from December 6 onwards, Delicious tastes of Christmas with waffles, drinks and candied nuts by Leonidas Belgian Chocolates and Swiss Style Nuts. December 25 closed at 5pm & December 25 closed.

2013 Gingerbread Lane All Day @ Hyatt Regency Vancouver (655 Burrard St.)
Free admission
It’s the sweet smell of the holidays in the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel. Vote for your favourite gingerbread house creation from November 28 – December 27th with proceeds to Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon. The centrepiece is Executive Chef Thomas Heinrich’s gigantic gingerbread building that measures 11 feet tall and 16 feet wide. Ingredients include 500 pounds of gingerbread dough, 400 pounds of confection sugar and 1,400 egg whites, plus a few secret ingredients and a little help from Hyatt’s engineering department. Four foot tall cut outs of gingerbread families are also available for picture taking. More than 30 individually crafted gingerbread creations from culinary professionals, amateur bakers, and secondary schools round out the sweet smelling lavish display.

Burnaby Village Museum presents Illuminations at Heritage Christmas 12:00pm -9pm @ Burnaby Village Museum (6501 Deer Lake)
Free admission
Stroll through the streets of the Village to enjoy the traditional sights and sounds of Christmases past—wreaths, cedar swags and seasonal displays. Unique and shimming lights display are throughout the Village including the opportunity for you to create your own magical holiday show with sound-reactive lights at the bandstand. Make a noise then watch the lights transform. Over 400 lights twinkle and change colours in response to sound. Come try it out! Pick up the new Twelve Days of Christmas Scavenger Hunt sheet and start exploring for the answers. There’s a new menagerie of transformed Eco-sculptures this season. They’re decoratively lit and beautifully adorned. Look for a grouping of eagles with their artist-made playable instruments. Check the online schedule for special seasonal entertainment including live theatre shows, carollers, artisans, musicians and more. Running until January 3, 2014 (12pm-9pm). Closed December 24 & 25.

Photo Credit: City of Burnaby

Photo Credit: City of Burnaby

2013 Vancouver Festival of Trees All Day @ Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver (791 Georgia St.)
Free admission
Set in the hallways of the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver and Pacific Centre Mall, this event is a must-see holiday tradition in Vancouver. For information on how to sponsor your own tree, please review the Festival of Trees Vancouver sponsorship package. Will remain on display until January 2, 2014.

Vancouver Christmas Market 11am-9pm @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza (650 Hamilton St.)
$6; other pricing in effect
The Vancouver Christmas Market is an annual can’t-miss Vancouver Christmas event running from November 22 to December 24, 2013. More than just a craft fair, this authentic German Christmas Market creates the perfect atmosphere to mix and mingle with friends and family, strolling through romantic rows of little wooden huts decorated in pine branches and illuminated with strings of little white lights. In each hut discover terrific food and drink and a wonderful array of Christmas gifts. During the pre-Christmas season, the Market is the perfect destination for combining an outing with friends and family with some Christmas shopping. Business people will find it a fun meeting place for a quick bite during lunch time or a drink after work (be sure to use our 2 for 1 Lunch Pass!). With a wide variety of cultural activities and entertainment events, it also becomes a place for people to enjoy and mingle before a night on the town. A special children’s area known as the Kids’ Market will give youngsters the chance to make their own Christmas gifts and ride downtown Vancouver’s only Christmas Carousel.

Sunday Tea & Tour at Roedde House Museum open 1-4pm @ Roedde House (1415 Barclay St.)
$8
Every Sunday, you are invited to join our famous Tea and Tour afternoons. Take part in a tea tasting (our own Roedde House blend by Murchie’s) while you explore the museum and revel in the atmosphere of the house.

Photo Credit: Roedde House Museum

Photo Credit: Roedde House Museum

The Cultch presents An East Van Panto 2pm & 7pm @ York Theatre (639 Commercial Dr., Vancouver)
Various ticket pricing
Get ready for a wild ride! Theatre Replacement (Dress me up in your live) returns to blow the roof off the brand new York Thatre with An East Van Panto. With words and music by Amiel Gladstone and Veda Hille (Do You Want What I Have Got? A Craigslist Cantata), this upside down version of the classic holiday pantomime-complete with bad guys, good guys, hissing and cheering-will be a sweet and whacked-out treat for the whole family. Runs until December 28.

Corkscrew Wine Tasting presents Pre-Christmas Wine Tasting Event 6pm @ Citycrest (1155 Homer St.)
$25
A blind wine tasting in Yaletown: this is an event with a technology angle, where you can rate your preferences on a giant touchscreen and see how your favourites match up against everyone else! There will be many snacks provided, full bar & bathroom facilities, and a draw for a free bottle of wine. Dress Semi-formal (ties and dresses not required, but no t-shirts and jeans please), bring a bottle of wine per person (a wine that you either enjoy and would like to share, or that you’ve never yet tried and would like to sample). Location is on 2nd floor (buzz #2303) – two blocks west of the Yaletown-Roundhouse Canada Line Station. Please RSVP soon — note that a minimum of 10 people must sign up or the event will be cancelled and tickets refunded.

 



What are you planning on doing this weekend? Leave a comment below, or tweet me at @vikkiwkl!


 

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