All is bright: A 2019 guide to holiday events around Metro Vancouver

Credit to Author: Julia Piper| Date: Wed, 04 Dec 2019 23:47:10 +0000

Looking for a few fun activities to fill your holiday schedule with? Well, you’re in luck.

There are dozens (and dozens!) of fun festive events happening in and around Metro Vancouver this season.

From free offerings to family friendly options, here are a few options to add to your calendar.

FAMILY:

Christmas Glow: Vancouver
This seasonal community festival brings together the people you love to stroll, laugh and play under the twinkle of half a million lights. It’s the magic and wonder of an outdoor festival, hosted inside a cosy and spacious venue. • Harbour Convention Centre, until Jan. 5 • glowgardens.com/vancouver-christmas/

Canyon Lights
This annual holiday event is set to dazzle and amaze high above the forest floor. The park has transformed the suspension bridge, Cliffwalk,Treetops Adventure, canyon and rainforest into a twinkling West Coast winter wonderland.• Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, until Jan. 26 • capbridge.com

Grouse Mountain: Peak of Christmas
Visit Santa and his real reindeer, wander along the enchanting Light Walk, or watch Christmas movies in the Theatre in the Sky. Take a spin on the 8,000-square foot Mountaintop Skating Pond surrounded by trees adorned with glimmering lights. • Until Jan. 5, grousemountain.com/events/peak-of-christmas-2019

Heritage Christmas at the Burnaby Village Museum
Stroll through the streets of the village to see wreaths, cedar swags and vintage-themed displays. Special entertainment is scheduled throughout the season. • Burnaby Village Museum, until Jan. 3, 1-9 p.m. • Free admission, carousel rides $2.65/person • burnabyvillagemuseum.ca

Bright Nights Christmas Train
Experience the lights, breathtaking displays, and live performers along the train route, or view the displays at the Train Plaza. • Stanley Park Miniature Railway, until Jan. 1 • Advance tickets at ticketleader.ca

Park & Tilford Holiday Hi-Light Festival
This annual event features more than 150,000 lights on display over three acres. • Park & Tilford Gardens, North Van, until Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m. • By donation, cnv.org

Lights at Lafarge
The largest free light display in Metro Vancouver turns Lafarge Lake into a magical, dazzling display of lights. Stroll the circle route around the lake and enjoy a variety of light installations.• Lafarge Lake, Coquitlam, until Jan. 19 • Free, coquitlam.ca

VanDusen Festival of Lights
A magical winter wonderland with more than one million lights decorating 15 acres of the garden. Stroll through interactive themed areas, watch the dancing lights show on Livingstone Lake, and light a candle at the Make-A-Wish candle grotto. • VanDusen Botanical Garden, until Jan. 5 • vandusenfestivaloflights.ca

Karaoke Christmas Lights Trolley Tour
Sing your favourite holiday carols while visiting two of Vancouver’s most spectacular light displays — Bright Nights at Stanley Park, and VanDusen Festival of Lights. Each trolley is equipped with TVs and karaoke machines. • Until Dec. 29, departs from Canada Place at 6:30 p.m. • westcoastsightseeing.com

Christmas Glow Abbotsford
Experience a magical family-friendly indoor wonderland. Enjoy interactive light gardens, illuminated structures, delicious food, festive drinks and daily live entertainment all under the twinkle of a million lights. • TRADEX, until Jan. 4 • glowgardens.com/abbotsford-christmas

32nd annual Christmas at Canada Place
Experience the nostalgic tradition of the Woodward’s Windows, Canada’s North light display, the iconic Sails of Light, and the festive Avenue of Trees. • 999 Canada Place, until Jan. 1 • canadaplace.ca

CP Holiday Train
The magical CP Holiday Train will set out once again to entertain hundreds of thousands of people, collecting food and raising funds for food banks. This year’s performers include Terri Clark and Dallas Smith. • Agassiz, Dec. 16, 5:20-6:15 p.m. | Haney-Maple Ridge, Dec. 16, 7:50-8:30 p.m. | Pitt Meadows, Dec. 16, 8:55-9:35 p.m. | Port Moody, Dec. 17, 5:20-6:15 p.m. | Port Coquitlam, West Coast Express Station, Dec. 17, 7-7:45 p.m. • cpr.ca/holiday-train/schedule-canada

VSO: Home Alone in Concert
A true holiday favourite, this comedy classic features composer John Williams’ delightful score performed live to picture by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. • Orpheum Theatre, Dec. 18 and 20 • $31-$109.50, vancouversymphony.ca

Heritage Holidays at the Fort
Hear stories by the fire, taste a roasted chestnut, and join costumed interpreters for a guided, holiday-themed tour. • Dec. 21-23 and Dec. 27-30, Fort Langley National Historic Site • Included with admission, pc.gc.ca

Winter Solstice Lantern Festival
This annual festival illuminates the darkest night of the year with lanterns, fire, singing, drumming, music, storytelling, and dancing. Come celebrate this free community event in three Vancouver neighbourhoods: Yaletown, Granville Island and Strathcona • Dec. 21, secretlantern.org

MUSIC

VSO: A Traditional Christmas
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra holiday tradition returns with singing, storytelling, and plenty of holiday cheer. • Dec. 12: Kay Meek Centre, West Van | Dec. 13: Centennial Theatre, North Van | Dec. 14: Bell Performing Arts Centre, Surrey | Dec. 22: Orpheum Theatre • $39/$45, vancouversymphony.ca

Winter Harp
Classical and Celtic harps combine with flutes, violin/fiddle, medieval instruments, percussion, poetry and song. • Dec. 12: BlueShore Centre, North Van | Dec. 15: The ACT, Maple Ridge | Dec. 18: Holy Trinity Cathedral, New West | Dec. 20: Christ Church Cathedral • winterharp.com

Good Tidings! A Good Noise Gospel Christmas
Soul singer Katherine Penfold joins the Good Noise Vancouver Gospel Choir for a concert of gospel, soul and jazz arrangements of Christmas classics. • Christ Church Cathedral, Dec. 13 and 14 • $10-$30, goodnoisevgc.com

A Phoenix Christmas
Join the Phoenix Chamber Choir for a joyous blend of sacred and secular tunes, plus a carol singalong. • Dec. 14: Shaughnessy Heights United Church | Dec. 15: West Vancouver United Church • $15-$40, phoenixchoir.com

Cowboy Christmas
Cowboy singer and songwriter Rob Dinwoodie and his Western band Open Range portray the classic Dickens fable in an evening of music and drama, putting a cowboy twist on the familiar tale. • Chilliwack Cultural Centre, Dec. 19 • $30-$35, chilliwackculturalcentre.ca

Christmas Reprise XVII Vancouver
Vancouver Cantata Singers present traditional carols and contemporary holiday compositions for unaccompanied choir. Let the beauty of a cappella singing transport you at this busy time of year. • Dec. 21: Holy Rosary Cathedral | Dec. 21: Queens Avenue United Church, New West • $10-$35, vancouvercantatasingers.com

Christmas with Chor Leoni: Angels Dance
Chor Leoni Men’s Choir is joined by the emerging professional dancers of Arts Umbrella’s Performance Research Project. Traditional holiday music from the Southwest, Appalachia, Europe, and Canada will be featured. • Orpheum Theatre, Dec. 21 • $10-$45, chorleoni.org

Christmas with Chor Leoni
Chor Leoni presents its traditional music-only Christmas concert, accompanied by harp, marimba, guitar, and piano. • West Vancouver United Church, Dec. 22 • $20-$45, chorleoni.org

STAGE

The Sound of Music Journey along with the spirited Maria, who takes a governess position with the von Trapp family, falling first for the children and then the widower Captain von Trapp. Presented by Arts Club. • Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage, until Jan. 5, sing-along performances Dec 26 & Jan. 4 • From $39, artsclub.com

Merry Kissmas – A Royal Romance
This is the time of year when screens large and small are filled with sappy, warm-hearted romantic comedies, and the stage at The Improv Centre is no exception. Vancouver TheatreSports’ holiday special parodies all the inane clichés and tropes you would expect to see in any popular holiday TV special or film. • Improv Centre, Granville Island, until Dec. 24 • $12.75-$29.75, vtsl.com

It’s a Wonderful Christmas-ish Holiday Miracle
It’s a Wonderful Life meets Modern Family in this new Canadian comedy — a play that approaches the less camera-ready aspects of the holiday season with humour and a generous helping of whimsy. An Arts Club presentation. • Goldcorp Stage, BMO Theatre Centre, until Dec. 22 • From $29, artsclub.com

A Christmas Carol
It’s Christmas Eve and Ebenezer Scrooge is drifting off to sleep but he cannot imagine what the night has in store for him. Ron Reed embodies Scrooge and 43 other characters in one of the greatest Christmas stories ever written. • Pacific Theatre, until Dec. 21 • $20-$36.50, pacifictheatre.org

Bah Humbug!
An Eastside Christmas Carol celebrating the spirit and humanity of Charles Dickens and the Downtown East Side community. Join us for the 10th annual and final season of this beloved holiday classic! Juno Award-winner Jim Byrnes leads this inspiring musical ensemble which reveals Vancouver’s pressing social issues showcased in a riveting rendition. • Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, until Dec. 21 • $39/$24, eventbrite.com

Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley
This festive Pride and Prejudice followup play is set after Lizzy Bennet has married Mr. Darcy and they come to live on his grand estate. In true Austen fashion, it is a story about family and finding love — but with a modern, subversive sensibility. • Arts Club Granville Island Stage, until Jan. 4 • From $29, artsclub.com

Mixed Nuts
Arts Umbrella puts a new twist on holiday favourite The Nutcracker. Featuring a variety of dance styles, this year’s production mixes old favourites and new pieces choreographed by leading Vancouver and Canadian dancers, including Ballet B.C. and Kidd Pivot company members. • Vancouver Playhouse, Dec. 13-15 • $25/$30, artsumbrella.com/mixednuts

It’s A Wonderful Life
Patrick Street Productions’ artistic producer Peter Jorgensen has adapted this holiday favourite and transformed it into a musical. This heartwarming show breathes musical life into the familiar story while it retains its warmth and humour • Anvil Centre, New West, Dec. 19-Jan. 5 • From $29, patrickstreetproductions.com

Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker
A traditional rendition of a classical masterpiece, The Nutcracker features local and international dancers. This year’s show will feature a live choir, 16-foot Christmas tree, larger-than-life nutcracker and sleigh, and an enchanting snow scene. • Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Dec. 20-22 • $37-$139, gohnutcracker.com

Ballet B.C.: The Nutcracker
Ballet B.C. presents Alberta Ballet’s magical production of The Nutcracker, set in turn-of-the-century Imperial Russia. With live music from the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra this magical production is set to delight audiences young and old. • Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Dec. 28-30 • $44-$105, balletbc.com

Compiled by Julia Piper, jpiper@postmedia.com

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