This week is all about bright lights, celebrations, outdoor adventure and award-winning ads! It may sound like a bit of an odd collection of activities but Manitoba is all about creativity, especially when the weather starts to cool down. So check out these 10 things to do this week in Manitoba...

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1. Be dazzled by the glow of Zoo Lights

A family stands in front of a train car at the Zoo Lights FestivalAssiniboine Park Zoo | Until January 5, 2020

Explore Polar Town where you'll find thousands of light installations, from traditional tree wrappings to the latest technology in outdoor lighting and projection. The Assiniboine Park Zoo has been magically transformed into a place where the wonders of winter are celebrated through music, art, culture and community. 

2. Have a staycation at the Fairmont

The Winnipeg skyline from the pool at the Fairmont WinnipegHave your own little getaway at the Fairmont Winnipeg this weekend. Book a room, get into a cozy robe, take a dip in the pool and enjoy a delicious meal at the Velvet Glove. And since the Fairmont is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2020, there's a special offer of 50% off a daily rate if you book a stay before Dec. 30, 2019.

3. Enjoy seasonal songs with the WSO

Four people sit on a bench indoors singing.

Centennial Concert Hall | December 13 to 15

Join the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra for an evening of merry melodies and holiday classics. New York Voices is known as one of the most exciting vocal ensembles in current jazz and puts on a wonderful holiday show. Make your seasonal concert even more exquisite by buying a ticket for the WSO's dinner & symphony on December 14 when you'll be served a specially themed meal to enjoy before the concert. 


4. Get involved in the Manitoba 150 fun

Christmas Lights

Manitoba Legislative Building | December 14

Illuminate 150 is the kickoff event for a year of celebration, education and reflection as Manitoba enters its 150th year after receiving royal assent. Join in the fun as the Manitoba Legislative Building is lit with 300,000 lights! See an aerial snowmobile acrobatic performance, drink gourmet hot chocolate and try snowshoeing at this free event.

5. Keep your eyes on the skies

Oak Hammock Marsh Christmas bird count - blue-jay

Various locations and dates

Become a citizen scientist and help staff at Oak Hammock Marsh and Park Interpreters at Birds Hill Provincial Park collect data about birds by joining the annual bird count. Take the whole family to learn about winter birds and help keep tabs on the bird population in Manitoba.   

6. Explore the outdoors

Whiteshell Cross Country Skiing

Get outside and get moving! Learn to cross country ski with a certified ski instructor in Spruce Woods Provincial Park or head out into the wilderness on snowshoes with a Park Interpreter in Whiteshell Provincial Park. Experience the beauty of a Manitoban winter while getting a good workout and learning new skills.

7. Take the family to a show

A year with Frog and Toad at MTYPManitoba Theatre for Young People | Until December 29

See the classic duo, Frog and Toad, and live a year with them as their friendship grows and the adventures escalate. A wonderful show for kids and a trip down memory lane for the adults in the audience, this Manitoba Theatre for Young People show is fun for the whole family. 

8. Laugh, gasp and cry at the best ads of this year

Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity

Winnipeg Art Gallery | December 12 to 30

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, the world's most prestigious advertising awards, return to the Winnipeg Art Gallery to present this year's best commercials! The winners are selected from over 35,000 entries from over 90 countries, so you know they're good!

9. Visit the Canadian Museum for Human Rights

Exterior of the Canadian Museum for Human RightsNo visit to Winnipeg would be complete without a visit to this bucket-list museum. Featuring 12 interactive galleries, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights is far less about artifacts and far more about ideas presented through stories and technology. An often life-changing experience, visitors who come here will find themselves immersed in the stories of struggle and triumph throughout the 4,300 sq. ft. of exhibit space. 

10. Walk through a winter wonderland

A horse drawn sleigh ride through the Homsteaders Village at the Manitoba Agricultural Museum

Manitoba Agricultural Museum | December 13-15 and 20-22

See the Manitoba Agricultural Museum in a new light when it’s all dressed up for the holidays! Hop on a sleigh ride for a magical journey through the historic buildings in the Homesteader’s Village Winter Wonderland. With 20 buildings dating as far back as 1879, the Homesteader's Village will have you traveling back in time to a simpler, more relaxing season.