When: Multiple dates
This month, get ready to be dazzled by Christmas light displays all around the city. There are at least six displays you can drive by or walk through in Calgary, including Zoolights at the Calgary Zoo, the Christmas Lights Drive-Through at Spruce Meadows and the community light display in Legacy.
When: December 8 to 11
Back for a 15th year, the Under $100 Art Show is a great opportunity to find beautiful art for your space without breaking the bank. Peruse the work of 100 artists during the market’s second weekend, where all the pieces will be less than $100.
8 Manning Close N.E., under100artshow.com
Afternoon tea is a special dining experience complete with pastries, finger sandwiches and warm drinks. And luckily, there are at least five restaurants in the city where you can experience it.
Read more: Where to Go for Afternoon Tea in Calgary
When: December 1 to 28
If you liked the Beyond Van Gogh exhibit that came to Calgary last year, then you’ll probably want to check out The Immersive Nutcracker: A Winter Miracle, too. In this three-dimensional, digitally projected exhibition, the story of the famous ballet The Nutcracker comes alive through digital animation, footage of ballet dancers and the ballet’s beloved score.
20 Roundup Way S.E., immersive-nutcracker.com
When: December 8 to 10
There are tons of holiday events happening on 17 Avenue S.W. this month, from pictures with the Grinch to fireside sing-a-longs. There will even be some outdoor winter movie screenings where you can watch classics like National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Love Actually or Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in Tomkins Park.
Tomkins Park, 17 Avenue and 8 Street S.W., 17thave.ca
Olympic Plaza, a City-maintained outdoor skating rink, has officially opened for the season. So the next time you’re in need of some fresh air, head there for a skate. It’s free to skate at Olympic Plaza, and those who need to rent skates and helmets can do so for a fee at the Skate Hut from Wednesday to Sunday.
228 8 Ave. S.E., calgary.ca
Calgary restaurants and breweries are getting in the holiday spirit with festive pop-up bars inside their spaces this month. Experience Miracle on First Street at Proof, a Home Alone-inspired activation at Eighty-Eight Brewing Co. and more.
Read more: Holiday Pop-Up Bars in Calgary
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Mari Bakeshop is officially back (and now located in Bridgeland) after closing its East Village bakery back in the summer of 2021. The new location is a bright and spacious spot to enjoy treats like choux pastries, slices of roll cake and other baked goods ranging from monkey bread to croissants. Be sure to order a baguette or loaf of bread to enjoy at home later, too.
103 St. Matthew Square N.E., 403-214-0629, maribakeshop.ca
When: December 9 to 11 and 16 to 18
The ISU World Cup Speed Skating competitions will take place at Calgary’s Olympic Oval over two weekends this month. Cheer on athletes from around the world as they take on events like the women’s 300-metre or men’s team pursuit. Tickets are still available.
Olympic Oval, 288 Collegiate Blvd. N.W., speedskating.ca
When: December 10
Led by music therapist Jennifer Buchanan, this event at the National Music Centre looks at the power of music and how it can help with your motivation and mental health. Sign up in advance to secure your spot.
850 4 St. S.E., 403-543-5155, studiobell.ca
Looking for a cool stocking stuffer or gift for a family member? We’ve got you covered. Avenue‘s holiday gift guide has 60 suggestions to help you find just the right presents for your friends and family this year.
Read more: Avenue’s Holiday Gift Guide 2022
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A new three-acre park has opened in the University District, complete with a temperature-controlled outdoor skating rink, fire features and more. If you want to check it out, make a day of it by bringing your skates, seeing a movie at the neighbourhood’s Cineplex VIP Cinemas and grabbing a bite at a nearby restaurant.
Central Commons Park, 4019 University Ave. N.W., myuniversitydistrict.ca
Golfing is not just an outdoor activity anymore. Thanks to indoor golf lounges (which also have eateries where you can grab a bite), you can practice your swing all year round in Calgary.
Read more: 5 New Indoor Golf Lounges in Calgary
When: Opens December 17
WinSport’s tube park officially opens for the season on December 17 and promises plenty of excitement with its eight tubing lanes to slide down. Bring the whole family for a memorable weekend activity.
88 Canada Olympic Rd. S.W., 403-247-5452, winsport.ca
Located in Inglewood, The Curated Home has created an elevated and timeless space where shoppers can immerse themselves in interior design. Get inspired by the store’s vignettes while shopping for furniture, lighting, bedding, table settings, decor items and more.
1004 9 Ave. S.E., 403-620-9613, thecuratedhome.ca
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When: Until December 31
Enjoying a glass of eggnog (aka Shipnog) at the Ship & Anchor is a classic holiday tradition for many. This year, you can enjoy a glass in-person ($7.50) or pick up an off-sale bottle ($24) to sip on at home. It’s for some good causes, too: $5 from each glass and $10 from each bottle will equally support The Alex, Skipping Stone, the Calgary Drop-In Centre and the Centre for Newcomers.
534 17 Ave. S.W., 403-245-3333, shipandanchor.com
When: On now until December 31
Alberta Theatre Projects’ next show takes audiences to India with the story of The Jungle Book. The production uses puppetry, masks and props to tell the coming-of-age story that follows Mowgli as he grows up in the jungle and tries to discover where he belongs.
Martha Cohen Theatre, 215 8 Ave. S.E., albertatheatreprojects.com
Head behind Comery Block to the steel door marked Prickett Bar and you’ll find Calgary’s new cocktail hot spot in the barbecue restaurant’s basement. The bar’s moody vibe creates an exciting atmosphere to enjoy oysters and shrimp cocktail over beverages like A Rainy Night in SOHO.
1, 638 17 Ave. S.W., prickettrichard.com
When: Various dates
Each winter, Calgary’s arts scene is full of heartwarming Christmas stories, soaring holiday music and wintry settings. After two years of cancelled or virtual productions, several performing arts companies are back with in-person performances. From classics like The Nutcracker to holiday concerts, you won’t want to miss these shows.
Get your holiday shopping done while supporting local by checking out a local market over the next few weeks. Several markets are still taking place in and around Calgary in December, leaving plenty of opportunities to pick some locally made art, ceramics, home decor and more.