It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas and in the lead up to the festivities that this time of year usually brings, we’ve compiled a list of events that will help you manoeuvre your way through the holidays while getting into the spirit of things…if you aren’t already. Depending on your taste or current status, here are a few ideas to get you going.
For the love of the arts
Love a good live show, or theatrical? Can’t get enough of Manitoba’s arts and culture? Manitoba’s bustling arts scene will keep you entertained and coming back for more especially during these chilly months. Royal MTC’s latest production, It’s a Wonderful Life: The Radio Play, continues its stellar run at the John Hirsch Mainstage. The Huron Carole will pull on the heartstrings with a Christmas story of perseverance and miracles. The Winnipeg Art Gallery and The Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra are teaming up for their one-hour show Music from A Charlie Brown Christmas, while seasonal favourite, Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Nutcracker returns to the Centennial stage with familiar themes and striking scenes cut straight from the fabric of Canadian culture. No Christmas story is ever complete without a visit from the Ghosts of Christmas Past and Dalnavert Museum is pulling out all the spooky stops for this Victorian-era tale.
For the family, aka the kids
For kids who enjoy fairytales, Eaton’s Fairytale Vignettes at the Children’s Museum offer visuals that retell old story favourites, while the displays at the Festival des Crèches reflect how countries around the world celebrate Christmas through their nativity scenes. Prairie Theatre Exchange continues its Munsch tradition with Munschtopia this year. While Fort Dauphin Museum, Dufferin Historical Museum and Portage la Prairie invite you to celebrate the season with wagon and sleigh rides and festive light displays. Also in Portage la Prairie, Fort la Reine is hosting a Yule Tide event on December 8 (12:00 pm to 3:00 pm) that includes FREE hot coco, sleigh rides, an artisan market, cookie decorating and more! For that home-away-from-home feeling, head to The Metropolitan Entertainment Centre with the family for dinner and a movie. The Met isn't the only place doing movie nights for the family, take the kids to The Park Theatre for The Polar Express free movie night.
If you want a little takeaway to remember the holidays, head to The Fairmont's Santa Suite on every Saturday and Sunday before Christmas in December and take a cute snapshot with Santa himself!
For the couples
For those nights when you just want to go solo as in just the two of you, no kids and no tag-alongs, Homes for the Holidays Red River North is a good way place to start with a drive through the city of Selkirk on a self-guided tour of 10 each over 100 years old. If you’re in the market for something more festive, The Forks Market’s is always abuzz with activity. The Holiday Bazaar kicks off a frenzy of festivity and The Common is your one-stop shop for the best seasonal cocktails. The lights of the Canad Inns Winter Wonderland with its 26-plus themed displays is the perfect excuse for a date night, while Don Amero puts the soul into the season with his Christmas ballads at the Western Manitoba Centennial Auditorium.
For a romantic sleigh ride, the Manitoba Agricultural Museum is putting on a Winter Wonderland on December 14-16 and 21-23. The Homesteaders' Village will be aglow with holiday lights and bonfires will be roaring for hot dog and s'mores roasts.
For the shopaholic
For many, the holiday season would be a lot duller without the opportunities for shopping. If you’re one of those who finds joy in gift-giving, the annual German Christkindlmarkt at Fort Garry Place Mall might just about equate to paradise with items from local artists, as well as German imports and German baking. If you’re all about hitting as many sales or markets as you can find, a trip to ARK Ceramics & Gifts in Landmark may prove fruitful where you’ll find all sorts of handmade items, vintage and upcycled treasures. St. Norbert will be holding, not one, but two holiday markets with over 60 vendors to choose from that will make any shopaholic swoon, and the annual SCA Christmas Market is back for another year with local artisans' and vendors' showcasing their skills.
For the ones with FOMO
For those with that blink-and-you’ll-miss-it sensitivity, we haven’t forgotten about you, and neither has Selkirk. Holiday Alley beckons you to the old downtown where the streets will be alive with music, art and creativity and twinkling lights. If you’re looking for a little more excitement, Cirque Musica Holiday’s production Wonderland will feature some heart-stopping acrobats and aerialists. And if two events simply aren’t enough, then perhaps a Heartland Travel tour that takes you around some of the city’s best and brightest displays might do the trick.