Christmas and Holiday Events December 2015
These Christmas and Holiday events are the best! Take the kids to see cool holiday markets, amazing Christmas plays and more. We've rounded up the absolute best ways to get into the spirit of the season. From splurge-worthy, once-in-a-lifetime experiences to annual favourites worth revisiting, to free fabulous options, here are December's seasonal events where you can give your kids the best gift of all: happy family memories.
Here's what's happening in December...
More Santa Claus Parades
Various dates in December
Santa will be bringing some holiday cheer to Toronto and the GTA with this season's Santa Claus parades. See which city streets Santa will be hitting this year!
One of a Kind Show Toronto
Nov 26, 2015 to Dec 6, 2015
The One of a Kind Show provides a juried marketplace to bring together makers and buyers who share a commitment to handmade excellence. Join us at the One of a Kind Christmas Show to discover the best in Canadian Handmade.
12 Trees of Christmas at Gardiner Museum
Nov 12, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016
The Gardiner Museum’s 12 Trees of Christmas exhibition—a Toronto holiday tradition is now in its twenty-seventh year! Contemporary artists, designers, and cultural institutions were invited to reinterpret the Christmas tree, taking the theme of The Joy of Creativity as their inspiration. The twelve designs include a Christmas tree formed by the negative space between two giant lightning bolts; a modern interpretation of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, combining photography, geometric sculpture, and mechanics; and an installation made from recycled air conditioner coils embossed with Christmas trees.
Bloor-Yorkville Holiday Magic
Nov 14, 2015 to Dec 31, 2015
Join us for the official lighting ceremony and kick-off to Holiday Magic! Enjoy complimentary hot apple cider and cookies. See Bloor-Yorkville transformed into a magical holiday wonderland! Free.
RBG Train Show!
Nov 14, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016
The RBG Train Show features numerous Canadian landmarks constructed from over seven tons of cedar slabs, 3,000 pounds of rock and 250 feet of track. You’ll find Canadian landmarks in RBG Centre and depictions of Wonders of the World in the Mediterranean Garden. The RBG Express runs until December 22. You can meet the conductor at Hendrie tunnel and climb aboard RBG’s ride-on train, past the festive lights, before pulling into Candy Cane Station to meet Santa at his cabin.
Scottish Holiday Traditions at Gibson House
Nov 18, 2015 to Dec 31, 2015
Enjoy the simple and elegant traditions of the Scottish holiday season at Gibson House Museum. Learn how the Gibson family celebrated Hogmanay in the nineteenth century and sample some tasty treats by the open hearth. See the Victorian-era home decorated in natural greenery and take a guided tour with our knowledgeable staff.
Toronto Christmas Market
Nov 20, 2015 - Dec 20, 2015
Celebrate one of the world’s best Christmas Markets here in Toronto. Guests will immerse themselves in 28 days of European delicacies and Canadian homemade foods, a romantic atmosphere, stunning light canopies, unique shopping experiences, traditional music and dance performances, and activities for the whole family to enjoy. Admission is free during the week and $5 on weekends.
Santa Train Rides
Nov 21, 2015 to Dec 13, 2015
We have received news from the North Pole that Santa will be riding the York-Durham Heritage Railway train departing from the Uxbridge station only on Saturdays and Sundays beginning on November 21. Each trip lasts approximately 1 hour and has on-board entertainment for children of all ages. Santa will be visiting each child at their seat and distributing goodies to each.
Christmas at Black Creek
Nov 21, 2015 to Dec 23, 2015
Weekends are filled with Christmas tours, traditional treats and ballroom dancing. On December weekends visit with Santa and take a ride on a horse-drawn wagon. Regular admission rates apply.
Christmas at Colborne Lodge
Nov 21, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016 - 12:00 pm
Warm up by the hearth at Colborne Lodge and take in the sights and aromas of a Victorian Christmas. Enjoy the natural greenery decorations, toast the season with a glass of hot mulled cider by the wood stove and nibble on special holiday treats. The Lodge is nestled at the south end of High Park.
A Victorian Christmas at MacKenzie House
Nov 24, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016 - 12:00 pm
This festive season take a step back in time to Victorian Toronto and experience the magic of a traditional Christmas in an 1859 row-house. Escape from the hustle and bustle while you enjoy a sample of mulled cider and a biscuit in the warmth of the historic kitchen. Discover the story of how families celebrated Christmas in 19th-century Toronto as you tour the Mackenzie home which is dressed in greenery for the holidays.
Santa's Log Cabin in Trinity Square (Eaton Centre)
Nov 26, 2015 to Dec 24, 2015
The man in red is back in town and he can’t wait to see you again! Come see Santa in his Log Cabin, built by Timber Block while he’s here before Christmas. Book ahead to listen to Santa read you a Christmas story and get a photo with him while he’s visiting from the North Pole, so you can skip the line-ups and get back to the good stuff - wrapping gifts and counting down how many more sleeps until the big day.
Magical Winterland Nights at Casa Loma
Wednesdays, Dec 2, 2015 to Dec 30, 2015
Explore the Magic of Casa Loma.. at night! Wander through the dazzling lighting display in the gardens and witness famed illusionist entertainer Professor Wick’s holiday themed magic show. Families are invited to visit Santa in his castle workshop, scour the castle on a scavenger hunt, visit with wintery holiday mascots, sing along with live carollers, enjoy savoury chilli, s’mores, hot cocoa and much more!
A Christmas Carol
Dec 3, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016 - 7:30 pm
Bah Humbug! Soulpepper's beloved production of Michael Shamata's A Christmas Carol has become a Toronto holiday tradition. Follow Ebenezer Scrooge as he is visited by three ghosts who help him understand the importance of charity in the holiday season. A Christmas Carol is part of Soulpepper's Family Festival. Recommended for ages 8 and up.
Santa and Winter Market in the Junction
Dec 5, 2015
Join us, as we celebrate Santa’s visit in the Junction with both indoor and outdoor markets, workshops, presentations, performances, crafts and holiday promotions. Be sure not to miss the children’s choir and a live music performance by an original brass quintet at the Junction train platform. Free.
The Nutcracker Presented by City Dance Corps
Dec 5, 2015
City Dance Corps presents a holiday classic with a twist. This timeless holiday classic is a must-see for the entire family. City Dance Corps' 8th annual faculty production returns to the stage with our very own remixed version of the Nutcracker, featuring an array of dance genres and an uplifting soundtrack. Join us as we bring this story to life through dance.
Sunday FUNday - Pen & Ink Letters to Santa
Dec 6, 2015 - 12:00 pm until 4:00 pm
When you write a letter to Santa Claus you can use a pen, pencil marker or whatever you like, but this year why don’t you mix it up a bit and join us for Sunday FUNday where we’ll be using a pen and ink to write our letters to Santa! Just come down to the museum on Sunday, December 6, 2015 at 12 pm for this festive get together. Free. Donations accepted.
Fort York Frost Fair
Dec 5, 2015 to Dec 6, 2015 - 10:00 am until 5:00 pm
Stroll through the historic 1812 buildings of Fort York, where merchants will be selling heritage inspired reproductions, regency fashions and holiday greenery. Experience military demonstrations, children's drill workshops, games and crafts. Enjoy heritage cuisine, try on historic costumes and print a Frost Fair souvenir on the Mackenzie House proof press, and much more.
Christmas on the Rails at the Halton County Radial Railway
Dec 5, 2015 to Dec 12, 2015
Ride into the holiday season with us! We’re opening our doors one last time until the spring for a unique seasonal experience. There’s nothing like riding the rails through the woods with snow on the trees and Christmas carols in the air and a visit from Santa! Tickets sold at the door.
A Christmas Carol - The Dickens' Classic at Montgomery’s Inn
Dec 5, 2015 and Dec 19, 2015
Presented by The Humber River Shakespeare Company. The beloved Dickens classic is back by popular demand - this time as a full stage production. Don't miss this holiday season favourite!
Christmas By Lamplight at Black Creek
Dec 5, 12, & 19, 2015
For three magical evenings, Black Creek Pioneer Village invites visitors to join in the holiday festivities. Bathed in the glow of lamplight and dressed in its finest holiday decor, Black Creek comes alive with live music, food and activities. Program only or with dinner options available.
Magical Christmas Forest at Kortright
Dec 5, 2015 to Dec 20, 2015
Christmas crafts, activities and treats for the whole family to enjoy. Go on a horse-drawn wagon ride and meet Santa in his workshop. Advance tickets required.
Holiday Bricktacular! at LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre
Dec 5, 2015 to Dec 27, 2015
Every SATURDAY & SUNDAY in December, something magical comes over the LEGOLAND® Discovery Centres! Little elves can experience themed decor, building challenges, scavenger hunts and much more! Jump inside the World's Most Festive Box of LEGO® Bricks!
The Magical Toyland at Casa Loma
Dec 5, 2015 to Dec 29, 2015
This December join us to celebrate and take part in the holiday magic at Casa Loma! We are excited to host a wide range of activities and exciting performances that are sure to be fun for the whole family. Enjoy two brand new magic shows created by famed illusionist entertainers. As always kids are invited to visit Santa in his castle workshop, scour the castle on a scavenger hunt, participate in creative arts and crafts, visit with wintery holiday mascots, decorate tasty treats, sing along with live carolers and much more!
Flight of White at the Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory
Dec 5, 2015 to Jan 30, 2016
This truly unique holiday exhibit transforms the tropical butterfly conservatory into a magical oasis featuring 1000's of additional Rice Paper butterflies flying freely through the Conservatory. With a wingspan of up to 14cm, the Rice Paper Butterfly, a large white relative of the Monarch, is impossible to miss as it floats through the air moving gently from flower to flower. The Flight of White experience also includes lush white poinsettia flowers, 1000's of sparking white lights, and soft strains of classical music playing in the background.
Milk and Cookies with Santa and Mrs. Claus
Dec 6, 2015
Ho Ho Ho! Santa is coming to the Butterfly Conservatory! Have fun decorating cookies and get a chance to meet Santa & Mrs. Claus. A great photo opportunity! Please note: Reservations are required, and full payment is due upon reservation.
Judy & David's ChanukahPalooza
Dec 6, 2015
What is ChanukahPalooza? It’s what you get when you take Toronto’s favourite family Chanukah show since 2001 and add some of Canada’s best children’s musicians who just HAPPEN to celebrate Chanukah! It’s quite simply, a Chanukah concert you won’t want your family to miss.
The Golden Age of Radio at Spadina Museum at Spadina Museum
Sundays, Dec 6, 2015 to Dec 20, 2015
Flashman Versus Evil: A Grudge Match - Recreated 1930s Radio Play. Family fun is on the air! Watch with delight as we re-create a live, 1930s radio show- commercials included! The 4th installment of our series finds Flashman drugged and under the spell of the evil queen Cerulean. Will he escape her evil clutches or remain her prisoner forever? This holiday season listen in as his friends brave bomb-laden jewellery, irony-laced barbs and goa- riding henchmen -- all to save Flashman and the universe!
Christmas Dinners at Black Creek
Dec 6, 13, 20, 2015
Enjoy a traditional Christmas Dinner. See the Village at your own pace, relax, wander and visit our many homes and workshops, decorated to celebrate the season. Visit our website for more details.
Santa Dives at Ripley's Aquarium
Dec 8, 2015 to Dec 24, 2015
Santa and his elves are back this year to spread aquatic holiday cheer! Watch in awe as either Santa Claus or one of his friendly elves (or both!) dive into our Ray Bay, getting up close and personal with our rays while they feed them. Tis the season to be thrilled!
A Christmas Carol at Black Creek
Wednesdays, Dec 9, 2015 to Dec 16, 2015
This December, gather with friends and family as five actors bring the timeless tale of greed, ghosts, salvation and hope to life! 5 Actors. 30+ characters. 1 Trunk. Mask. Music. Puppets.
Winter Holiday party with Santa at Fairyland Theatre
Dec 12, 2015
The magical season, winter, is coming. That means, it is time for Fairyland Theatre Winter Holiday party with Santa! This year we will be having Princess and Superhero themes. The event will be very interactive. Kids will play many themed games and dance with each character.
It’s a Wonderful Christmas
Dec 12, 2015 to Dec 13, 2015
On December 12th & 13th, an all-new Christmas musical is hitting the stage of the CPA Centre. The hilarious Musical Comedy It’s a Wonderful Christmas is sure to delight audiences of all ages with its Broadway style dancing and singing in a magnificent Christmas spectacle. t’s a Wonderful Christmas is an original story that mixes the classics “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “A Christmas Carol” into a Christmas adventure unlike any other.
The Nutcracker by National Ballet of Canada
Dec 12, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016
The National Ballet of Canada’s The Nutcracker is Toronto’s favourite holiday tradition and an utter joy to experience, for children and adults alike. Join Marie and Misha on their magical Christmas Eve journey as they battle the Mouse Tsar, travel to the glittering winter realm of the Snow Queen and visit the magnificent palace of the Sugar Plum Fairy!
Gibson House Gingerbread Cookie Decorating Drop-in
Dec 12, 2015 - 1:00 pm until 4:30 pm
Start your adventure by decorating gingerbread cookies baked by museum staff with holiday sweets. Then, take a tour of the museum with our costumed interpreters and learn how the Gibson's would have baked gingerbread over the hearth. Finish your visit by enjoying your gingerbread cookie!
The Nutcracker at Living Arts Centre
Dec 13, 2015
The State Ballet Theatre of Russia brings the most beloved ballet to glorious life, The Nutcracker. This company of distinguished dancers have showcased the unparalleled art of Russian ballet to countries throughout the world. Set to Tchaikovsky’s musical score this timeless ballet makes for a Holiday tradition the entire family can enjoy.
Santa Experience at Kidz360
Dec 13, 2015
Santa is coming to Kidz360! Join Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves for storytelling, songs, and cookie decorating! There is fun for the whole family! This event will also include face painting and a professional photographer will be available for pictures with Santa.
The Holiday Season at Fort York
Dec 14, 2015 to Dec 31, 2015
Enjoy a visit to Fort York National Historic Site this festive season. Sample some baking from the 1826 Officers' Mess kitchen and soak up the warmth of a crackling wood fire. Be sure to browse the Museum Store to find that special gift you won't find anywhere else. The Museum Store features gifts suitable for all ages and interests.
30th Annual Nutcracker Presented by Pia Bouman School for Ballet
Dec 17, 2015 to Dec 20, 2015
Thursday December 17, is opening night for the longest-running Nutcracker performance in Toronto. Presented by Pia Bouman School for Ballet and Creative movement, a not-for-profit dance school in Parkdale, the performance brings together nearly 100 dancers ages 7-18 along with a community of volunteers and local dignitaries to share in this holiday favourite. An annual tradition for families in the area, the event brings Parkdale and its surrounding communities together for an evening of dance and holiday cheer. Proceeds go to supporting the school’s programming and bursary funds.
Christmas Concert at Solar Stage
Dec 18, 2015
CHRISTMAS CONCERT By The Candy Cane Carolers. This special evening event will be a Christmas Concert with all you favourites and lots of opportunities to sing-a-long with famous Candy Cane Carolers who can be seen every day at the Christmas Market. There will be treats, hot beverages and some surprises too!
Winterfest on Toronto's Waterfront
Dec 18, 2015 to Dec 20, 2015
Santa will be making two stops at The Waterfront BIA's annual Winterfest on Toronto’s Waterfront this holiday season. Families can also join Santa and his elves for the Santa Brunch Cruise aboard Mariposa Cruises’ Northern Spirit. Pets can get in on the action with Pet Photos with Santa at Purina PawsWay, while families can learn more about the Arctic and create their own piece of art at the Museum of Inuit Art. Free. Some activities require admission.
Decorate a Cupcake at the Market Gallery
Dec 19, 2015
Drop by the West Mezzanine Kitchen of the South St. Lawrence Market for cupcakes and colouring, then visit the Market Gallery for an arts & craft activity! For children of all ages! Sponsored by the St. Lawrence Market Tenants Association & the Market Gallery. Admission is FREE.
Breakfast with Santa at Ripley's Aquarium
Dec 19, 2015 to Dec 20, 2015
He’s making a list and checking it twice, going to find out who’s hungry or not! This holiday season, join Santa for breakfast under the sea! Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada will be hosting a mouth-watering breakfast on Dec 19 and 20 from 8-9 AM. Tickets include: breakfast, a family photo with Santa, complimentary coat check, general admission into the aquarium, and a gift for your child to take home!
10th Annual Santa Cruise
Dec 19, 2015 to Dec 20, 2015 - 11:30 am until 2:00 pm
Join Santa aboard the Northern Spirit for the 10th Annual Santa Cruise presented by Mariposa Cruises during Winterfest on Toronto’s Waterfront. Families are invited to join Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves for this magical two-hour Santa Cruise which includes brunch aboard the Northern Spirit. Santa’s merry elves will entertain families on the Santa Brunch Cruise, hand out holiday treats and help make sure each family has their photo taken with Santa.
The Naughty Listers at Second City
Dec 19, 2015 to Jan 1, 2016
A hilarious holiday musical for all ages! Matinee Performances December 19 – January 1 The North Pole is thrown into chaos when one of Santa’s most trusted elves goes rogue. To get the holidays back on track, Santa will need the help of some of the naughtiest children ever. A hilarious mix of puppets, live action, and song that all members of the family will enjoy. Even the naughty ones.
Simcoe County Museum’s 12 Days of Christmas 2.0
Dec 19, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016
Join us at the Simcoe County Museum this holiday season to experience a new twist on a traditional Christmas carol during our 12 Days of Christmas 2.0 event running December 19, 2015 to January 3, 2016. Discover traditions from around the world as you navigate the 12 Days of Christmas by participating in the lyrics through fun activities such as three gingerbread- a-icing, two-candles-glowing, and a spider-in-a-pine-tree.
Elf of the Shelf Pajama Party at Petite and Posh
Dec 20, 2015 to Dec 23, 2015
Come to our Pajama Party with “Poshy” & “Sparkly” our Elf On The Shelves. Includes Photo with – Poshy & Sparkly. Watch the Elf on the Shelf Movie. Decorate Gingerbread Cookies. Milk & Cookies Served.
Holiday Tea Party with Santa at Petite and Posh
Dec 20, 2015 to Dec 23, 2015
Holiday Tea Party with Santa includes Photo with Santa, Gingerbread Cookie Decorating, Candy Holiday Scavenger Hunt, Dance Party with Santa, Decorate your own holiday tea cup, Tea time with Santa with Snow Dusted Belgian Waffles, Sweet Fancies, Cookies, Juice & Milk.
Holiday Eve Pancakes & Pajamas Breakfast at Glama Gal!
Dec 24, 2015
We love the holiday season and want to celebrate them with you. We created this event so friends can spend some holiday fun together on Christmas Eve morning, while parents can do some last minute holiday shopping. Come in your fave pajamas and let’s celebrate the holidays together.
A Roaring Twenties Christmas at Spadina Museum
Dec 24, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016
Experience a 1920s Christmas on a guided tour of Spadina. Holly wreaths, garlands of evergreens and mistletoe festoon the house based on the memories of the Austin family grandchildren. In the kitchen visitors will enjoy holiday treats made from original recipes and sip mulled cider warmed on the art deco gas range.
Toronto Zoo Treats and Talks
Dec 26, 2015
The Toronto Zoo is the place to be on Boxing Day! Enjoy 50% off admission all day and check out our extensive Keeper Talk Program that offers a fun holiday theme and delightful seasonal treats for the Zoo's animals. Please bring a non-perishable food item for the Daily Bread Food Bank.
Princess Holiday Tea Party at Petite and Posh
Dec 27, 2015 to Dec 30, 2015
Includes photo with character, Cupcake Decorating, Princess Treat Scavenger Hunt, Princess Sing A Long and Dance Party, DIY Magical Wand Craft, Special Princess Certificate. Tea Time includes: Snow Dusted Belgian Waffles, Sweet Fancies, Cookies, Juice & Milk. December 27th: Anna & Olaf, December 28th: Cinderella. December 29th: Elsa & Olaf, December 30th: Cinderella.
Gingerbread Make and Bake for Kids at Fort York
Dec 27, 2015 to Dec 31, 2015 - 11:00 am until 2:00 pm
When you arrive, sign your child up for a session of gingerbread making in the historic Officers' Mess Kitchen. While you enjoy a tour of Fort York, your kids can join the cooks to create traditional gingerbread cookies. In this hands-on workshop, they will use period cooking utensils and tools to sift flour, crush cinnamon, cloves or allspice, pound sugar and grate nutmeg and ginger as they prepare an 1800's gingerbread recipe. Samples can be taken home - if they last that long!
Ballet Jörgen Canada presents The Nutcracker at Markham Theatre
Dec 30, 2015 - 2 shows
Holiday magic is made year after year by Ballet Jörgen Canada’s The Nutcracker, a Canadian Tradition. Created by acclaimed choreographer and Artistic Director Bengt Jörgen to Tchaikovsky’s well-loved score, this delightful classic is a family favourite that brings magic to the holidays.
City of Toronto Christmas Concert
Dec 24, 2015 - 11:30 am until 12:30 pm
Annual Christmas Concert at Toronto City Hall, featuring three choirs. Come sing along and celebrate the season. The concert is free and all are welcome. Toronto City Hall Rotunda Performances by: All the King's Voices Toronto Beaches Children's Chorus Toronto Mass Choir Accompanied by the Tower Brass and James Bourne, Organist. The concert concludes with a visit from Santa Claus. Free admission.