Things to Do in Vancouver: Finding Fun Things to Do in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

**This is an archived page.  For current special events click here**


Special Events for December 2010
Dates may change, or events may be cancelled. Please confirm dates, times, and other particulars before attending by calling phone number and checking website listed.
Does your organization, club, or business have a family friendly event planned? For your free listing, send particulars to Kelmar.


December 1, 2010
Crossings: a return. Please join Anakana Schofield for a revisiting of Canadian playwright Betty Lamberts only published novel Crossings (Pulp Press 1979). Set in Vancouver in the 1960s, Crossings recounts the brutal relationship between a young woman and an ex-con. Their physical, often violent affair offers an honest and unflinching look at relationships and female suffering. This event will feature readings and contributions from Renee Rodin, Annabel Lyon, Juliane Okot Bitek, and performance artist Lori Weidenhammer. (Admission is free. Seating is limited.) Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch 350 W. Georgia Street, 604-331-4040,

December 1, 2010
Langara Community College Lecture Series: The Globalization of Diversity. Lecture by Deborah Blacklock: The Globalization of Diversity. As the world becomes more and more "globalized," there has also been an increase in the number of groups who emphasize their differentness. These trends suggest that, as globalization makes the world more homogenous, it also creates a need to be distinct. (Admission is free. Seating is limited. Co-sponsored by Langara College.) Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch 350 W. Georgia Street, 604-331-4040,

December 1 - 4, 2010
EXTRA EXTRA. A fast-paced powerhouse of explosively charged images and rich, multifaceted textures. Choreographed by Judith Garay, artistic director of Dancers Dancing. Firehall Arts Centre, 280 E. Cordova Street.

December 1 - 23, 2010
The Peak of Christmas.  A favourite Vancouver holiday tradition. Santa Claus, reindeer, ice skating, sleigh rides, carollers, classic cartoons. During the month of December, the spirit of Christmas comes alive with a magical celebration and a multitude of festivities atop Grouse Mountain.

December 1 - 24, 2010
Explore the lights, smells and sounds of Christmas in the Abbotsford. The Passport to Christmas will take you on a Christmas adventures where you can experience the sparkle of Christmas at local farms, boutiques and shoppes. Pick up your Passport at an participating location, download it ( or request on via email (

December 1 - 24, 2010
The Woodward’s Windows are Home for the Holidays in the newly-restored Woodward’s building (Hastings & Abbott) and in five additional locations in Vancouver’s downtown core. A walking tour to visit the six grand displays will take you on a nostalgic journey back in time. Get bundled up, snag a warm eggnog and enjoy. Visit each location to discover the answers to the quiz and enter to win a family trip for four courtesy of BCFerries Vacations.  For more information visit

December 1 - 24, 2010
Vancouver Christmas Market.  For the first time ever, a German Christmas Village comes to Canada. Located in front of Vancouver's Queen Elizabeth Theatre, the Vancouver Christmas market brings unique holiday shopping experiences, seasonal entertainment & traditional food right to Downtown. The festively decorated outdoor Village features rows of illuminated wooden huts & thousands of sparkling Christmas lights. The sound of bells & trumpeters & the delicious aromas of mulled wine & spicy gingerbread make the Village an unforgettable experience for the whole family. More than 40 vendors from Germany and Canada offer traditional handmade arts & crafts, Bavarian and German-style food & drinks.

December 1 - 24, 2010
Venture into a world of Elves, legends and fantasy and bring back the traditional magic of Christmas!  Explore the many interactive, rustic scenes and buildings that make up NORTH POLE BC, nestled in the scenic foothills of North Maple Ridge. For bookings, early bird or group discounts, corporate Christmas events and other promotional offers and information, visit our web site.  Pre-booking is required for all visits.

December 1 - 31, 2010
Heritage Christmas at Burnaby Village Museum. Enjoy the boughs, red bows and all the other old-fashioned ornaments and decorations throughout the village and farmhouse. The season features traditional entertainment, demonstrations, hands-on activities and exhibits from the early 1900s. The daily craft is as popular with children as is a chat with Father Christmas. Highlights include: Father Christmas; Footlight Theatre; Baking in the Farmhouse; Twelve Days of Christmas scavenger hunt. Musicians, entertainers, demonstrators, story tellers, community choirs and heritage crafts are also scheduled throughout the season.

December 1 - 31, 2010
The Vancouver Park Board and British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters' Burn Fund invite everyone to nights of magic and illumination for the thirteenth annual Bright Nights in Stanley Park. More than two million twinkling lights transform the forest, the train and children’s farmyard areas in the middle of the city’s wondrous Stanley Park. Bright Nights is enhanced by entertainment, dozens of delightful animated displays and more — carrying on the tradition started with the first Christmas Train over thirty years ago. For more information or to make a donation, please visit

December 1, 2010 to January 7, 2011
Visit “The Land of Christmas” this holiday season and enjoy a wonderful light show, free hot chocolate, live entertainers, caroling and Christmas music. The Land of Christmas is open from December 1st to January 7th from 5pm-10pm at 20169 32nd Avenue, Langley, BC. Santa will be on site until December 24th overseeing the festivities in his beautiful towering castle complete with a draw bridge and surrounded by giant fir trees. Admission is by donation and all proceeds support Children’s Wish. For more information visit:

December 1, 2010 to January 26, 2011
The North Vancouver Community Arts Council is proud to present: District Foyer Gallery, North Vancouver District Hall, 355 West Queens Road. 3D - (Textile Arts) Olga Uhrin – creates hand knitted baby fisherman sweaters made with cable knitting and twist stitches from cotton and cotton blends.  Olga is very passionate about this century’s old craft that is making a revival. 2D - (Paintings) Ron den Daas – presents a painting study that was created on site at MacKay Creek, an ancient passage and spawning ground.  The 60 pieces were created each week from Dec. 2008 – June 2010 documenting the many facets that culminate the conditions to support the numerous life cycles still evident in MacKay Creek.

December 2, 2010
A Gift to Vancouver: Creating the Goh Ballet Nutcracker.  A special look into the genesis of the production featuring an interview between Chan Hon Goh, former National Ballet of Canada Principal Dancer and executive producer of the Goh Ballet Nutcracker, and dance critic Max Wyman. Learn the history of how the Vancouver Nutcracker came to be. Includes a presentation by the Goh Ballet Nutcracker cast. (Admission is free. Seating is limited. Co-sponsored by The Goh Ballet Academy). Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch 350 W. Georgia Street, 604-331-4040,

December 2 - 18, 2010
Japanese Canadian National Museum presents Shiwasu Handmade Gifts Show and Sale.  National Nikkei Museum & Heritage Centre, 6688 Southoaks Crescent (corner of Kingsway & Sperling Ave) Burnaby; 604.777.7000,,

December 3, 2010
O Christmas Tree.  The Mount Pleasant BIA is erecting a huge community Christmas tree which will serve as a welcoming beacon througout the holidays. This will feature decorations made by our 3 local elementary schools. Come watch it light up for the first time and enjoy free hot chocolate, Santa giving out candy canes and entertainment by Kids Sing and the Cambrian Choir. Donations to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank gratefully accepted. Kingsway and Broadway - South East Corner; (604) 874-9816.

December 4, 2010
SEUSSICAL THE MUSICAL. The Cat is Back!  Carousel Theatre’s hit production SEUSSICAL THE MUSICAL returns after two sold-out Jessie Award winning runs in 2008 and 2009.  This hilarious musical, based on the works of Dr. Seuss, is sure to make everyone laugh and dance in their seats.  SEUSSICAL THE MUSICAL brings the tales of Dr. Seuss to life with this toe-tapping story that spans a wide spectrum of musical styles.  The much-loved characters of Horton the Elephant and The Cat in the Hat join favourites from Dr. Seuss in what promises to be the family event of the holiday season. Waterfront Theatre, 1218 Cartwright Street;

December 4, 2010
The History of Human Desire. The world of advertising is founded on a mechanism of desire: we desire to buy something because it is portrayed as desired by others. But the advertisement works only if it flatters us with the lie that this desire is somehow our autonomous creation. We do not want to be copycats; we flatter ourselves that it is our own personal choice that is the origin of our desire to buy the product. This forum considers the problem of whether it is an illusion that we construct our own identity. Is desire socially constructed, in a dark process of which we seemingly have some dim awareness, but yet still coloured with many more hues of self-deception? Christopher Morrissey is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Redeemer Pacific College. No reservations are required for these free forums; forums are open to people of all ages. SFU Harbour Centre,

December 4, 2010
This year, Heritage Square’s free holiday event Light up the Square is a lantern affair, complete with loads of fun activities and performances for the whole family. Make your own glowing lantern with which to deck Place des Arts’ Leonore Peyton Salon; bring a donation for the food bank to put under the “wish” tree, make an ornament to hang on it, and warm up with free hot chocolate at the Station Museum; partake in heritage baking and cookie and gingerbread decorating; enjoy yummy seasonal treats in the Noël Café; take a tour of Mackin Museum; and visit with Père Noël. The grand finale features a live presentation of the Christmas episode of Radio Maillard: a Vaudeville. Visit for more information.

December 4 - 18, 2010
Christmas in Kerrisdale.  Kerrisdale celebrates the holidays every Saturday leading up to Christmas with free horse & carriage rides, strolling quartets and Santa Claus who will dispense delectable European chocolates. Free horse & carriage ride also on Dec 23rd!

December 5, 2010
7th Annual Rogers Santa Claus Parade. Mark your calendar! The first Sunday in December is the official date of the Rogers Santa Claus Parade. Santas early visit to Vancouver on Sunday, December 5th, 2010 is the perfect kick off to the holiday season! This years Rogers Santa Claus Parade will feature its largest ever number of marching bands, dance troupes, festive floats and community groups, which entertain over 300,000 spectators. Produced by Rogers Communications Inc., the televised Parade is the Lower Mainlands biggest winter event lining the streets of West Georgia and Howe. A very special part of the Rogers Santa Claus Parade is celebrating the Spirit of Giving. Each year, on parade day, Rogers volunteers collect non-perishable food items and monetary donations on behalf of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. In the past six years, more than 55,500 lbs. of food and $240,000 in buying power has been collected from generous Parade audiences. Come join in the magic.

December 5, 2010
7th Annual Rogers Santa Claus Parade. This year’s Rogers Santa Claus Parade will feature its’ largest ever number of marching bands, dance troupes, festive floats and community groups, which entertain over 300,000 spectators. Produced by Rogers Communications Inc., the televised Parade is the Lower Mainland’s biggest winter event lining the streets of West Georgia and Howe.

December 5, 2010
Got Craft?  - Vancouver’s largest indie craft fair.  Come one, come all to the best indie craft fair in Vancouver! Started in 2006, Got Craft began as an indie craft market to showcase the DIY movement and the handmade goods that Vancouver artists were producing.  Held twice a year, the next show will take place on Sunday, December 5th from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Royal Canadian Legion on Commercial Drive at East 6th Avenue. 604-722-9346,

December 5, 2010
RETRO DESIGN & ANTIQUES FAIR.  175 tables and booths of fun, fabulous finds for you and your eclectic abode! Mid-century Modernist decor, vintage & estate jewelry, pop culture classics, boho & shabby chic accents, French country collectibles, old toys & dolls, retro glam accessories, decorative art pottery & glass, funky 50's kitsch, Art Deco & Art Nouveau, ephemera, paintings & prints, antiquarian books, textiles & linens, memorabilia, period lighting & fixtures, and much, much more...Plus Drop-In Appraisals All Day -- Call or Visit Website for Full Details - General Admission $5 at Door - Children Under 13 Free with Adult Admission - Free Parking - On-Site Cafe/Snack Bar. Croatian Cultural Centre, 3250 Commercial Drive at 16th Avenue.

December 5, 12, 29, 2010
What: Holiday Tea on the Train - Take a break from your busy December schedule with tea, coffee or cocoa on our authentic 1920s passenger car. Complete with sweet treats and classic holiday music for $5 per person. No reservations needed. Port Moody Station Museum, 2734 Murray St., Port Moody; For more information contact 604-939-1648 or email

December 5 - 23, 2010
Carol Ships Parade Of Lights Festival at Harbour Cruises.  Join Vancouver's unique celebration of the Holiday: The Carol Ships Parade of Lights Festival at Harbour Cruises. Harbour Cruises offers the most extensive and festive selection of Carol Ship departures in Vancouver. We are proud to continue our tradition of providing live Christmas carollers to lead you in all the Yuletide favourites. Enjoy professionally prepared holiday menus. 604-688-7246,

December 6, 2010
National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women in Canada. Established in 1991 by the Parliament of Canada, this day marks the anniversary of the murders in 1989 of 14 young women at l'Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal. They died because they were women. As well as commemorating the 14 young women whose lives ended in an act of gender-based violence that shocked the nation, December 6 represents an opportunity for Canadians to reflect on the phenomenon of violence against women in our society. It is also an opportunity to consider the women and girls for whom violence is a daily reality, and to remember those who have died as a result of gender-based violence. And finally, it is a day on which communities can consider concrete actions to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls. INFORMATION SOURCE: Government of Canada, Status of Women website,

December 6 - 18, 2010
20th Annual Christmas in Williams Park. 2010 marks the 20th annual Christmas in Williams Park.  Enjoy our drive-thru light display from December 6-16, 6:00-9:00pm.  Come walk and celebrate on December 17 & 18, 6:00-9:00pm.  There will be seasonal entertainment, horse and carriage rides through the park, face painting, pony rides, food , hot drink and photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus.  The nights are free but donations are gratefully accepted.  Free shuttle service is available from the parking areas.  Williams Park – located on the corner of 238th and 68th Ave in Langley; 604.881.6585.

December 7, 2010
For the Next 7 Generations. Join us for a screening of the documentary film "For the Next 7 Generations", and follow the momentous journey of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers from all four corners of the world as they travel around the globe to promote world peace and share their indigenous ways of healing. (Admission is free. Seating is limited). Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch 350 W. Georgia Street, 604-331-4040,

December 9, 2010
What Would Jesus Buy? Please join us for a screening of producer Mrogan Spurlock's ("Super Size Me") serious docu-comedy about the commercialization of Christmas. "What Would Jesus Buy?" follows Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping Gospel Choir as they go on a cross-country mission to save Christmas from the Shopocalypse; the end of mankind from consumerism, over-consumption and the fires of eternal debt! (Admission is free. Seating is limited. Co-sponsored by Cinema Politica). Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch 350 W. Georgia Street, 604-331-4040,

December 10, 2010
Terra Madre Day. Slow Food Vancouver celebrates local food and the people who produce it with Terra Madre Day, December 10, at the Italian Cultural Centre, 3075 Slocan Street (at Grandview Highway between Renfrew and Nanaimo). Meet the people who grow your veggies, find out about Community Supported Agriculture, and enjoy samples dished up by local chefs using home grown ingredients. Learn about this year's international Terra Madre conference, held in Torino, Italy from our knowledgeable delegates Mark Bomford, Heather Pritchard, Joanne McKinnon and many more. Admission by donation. Find out more at

December 11, 2010
Laneway House Tour. Light Up the Lanes! A Fundraising Tour Inside Five Recently Completed Lane Houses. Get some ideas for building a lane house, or just come to see what the buzz is all about. Buy your tickets online $50 + hst ($25 tax receipts issued upon request). The Vancouver Heritage Foundation, 604-264-9643,

December 11, 2010
The Pacific Ice Annual Christmas Gala takes place on December 11, 2010 at the South Surrey Arena 2199 148th Street Surrey, BC 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm. Three hundred fifty (350) skaters on twenty (20) teams from British Columbia and Washington State will be attending. Teams will debut their 2011 competitive programs to an expected crowd of over 1000. A variety of activities will compliment the afternoon of synchronized skating, including 50-50 draws, bake sale, raffles and prize give-aways. For further information, visit or email

December 16 - 30, 2010
Ellie King’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’. Fabulous family fun! Guaranteed genuine, traditional panto at its brilliant, hilarious best overflowing with magic, music, and mayhem! Cheer the good guys, boo the bad, and add even more sparkle to your holiday season. Presented by The Royal Canadian Theatre Company. Adult: $24.25 | Student/Senior: $20.25 | Under 12 yrs: $15.25. For tickets, call 604 501 5566 or visit us at  For more information:

December 18, 2010 to January 3, 2011
TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS. Celebrate the season with learning and sharing at the Maritime Museum and help provide safe harbour for those in need. With a non-perishable food bank donation, children under ten receive free admission (maximum of two free children when accompanied by a paid adult). During Twelve Days of Christmas, the Museum features a break from the busy holidays with self-guided crafts for kids and festive decorations. Monday - Saturday 10 am to 5 pm, Sunday noon to 5 pm / Closed December 24 & 25. 604-257-8300,

December 18, 2010
Come join us for Breakfast and Skate with Santa at the Langley Event Centre  (7888 – 200th Street ) on Saturday, December 18th. To purchase tickets, please visit or call the Langley Events Centre Box Office at 604.882.8800

December 18 - 19, 2010
23rd Annual Christmas at Canada Place. Breakfast with Santa December 18 & 19, 2010, 9am - 11:30am. This very popular and magical holiday experience includes visit with Santa, a buffet breakfast, and entertainment; Bobs and LoLo and Music with Marnie. Tickets can be purchased online through the website. Woodward's Windows Home for the Holidays December 1 to 24th. This display in the newly-restored Woodward's building (Hastings Street & Abbott Street) and in five additional locations in Vancouver's downtown core. Visit each location to discover the answers to the quiz and enter to win a family trip for four.

December 19, 2010
Free Christmas Skate. Free gliding on ice event sponsored by the Kerrisdale Business Association for the entire family with live music! Also includes free skate rentals and refreshments while quantities last. Kerrisdale Arena, 778-866-9875,

December 20, 2010 to January 3, 2011
Planetarium holiday classic, "Christmas on the Coast." Where can you find twinkling stars, beautiful West Coast imagery, sparkling city lights, and traditional Christmas music performed by acclaimed Canadian artists all gift-wrapped in one package? Drop by with the family and catch this holiday classic, “Christmas on the Coast,” daily between December 20 and January 3 (except Dec 25).

December 21, 2010
Winter Solstice Celebration.  A time when friends and family gather, exchange gifts, eat, drink, and laugh into the night to mark winter ending and spring approaching. Follow the sea of hand-made lanterns and the compelling rhythms of drummers to our magical Garden. 604-662-3207,

December 31, 2010
Critical Mass in Vancouver; Critical Mass is a grassroots reclamation of public space -- a bike ride and skate -- held the last Friday of every month. You are invited to enjoy the safety and comfort in the car-free space that we create by simply riding together! Bicycles, skateboards, rollerskates, self propelled couches, and any other form of human powered locomotion are all welcomed! We ride around the city wherever people want to go - this is decided collectively - the length of the ride depends on enthusiasm and is also collectively decided. No one who comes is forced to or needs to break the law in order to participate.  Meet 5 to 5:30 at the Vancouver Art Gallery, leave at 6pm; Critical Mass in Vancouver (

January 1, 2011
Polar Bear Swim.  The Vancouver Polar Bear Swim Club, one of the largest & oldest Polar Bear Clubs in the world. Its initial swim was in 1920 when a small number of hardy swimmers took the plunge into English Bay on New Year's Day. Led by their founder, Peter Pantages, the swim has grown from around 10 swimmers in that year to the record number of 2,128 official entries in 2000. Today, the swim takes place on the first day of each new year. Costumes and the Peter Pantages Memorial 100 yard swim race are the highlights of this event. 604-665-3418.

January 25 - 29, 2011
The Cultch presents RELAY, a production by AME HENDERSON / PUBLIC RECORDINGS (Toronto, ON). HISTORIC THEATRE AT THE CULTCH (1895 VENABLES STREET); 604-251-1363 or tickets

Ongoing to December 11, 2010
Back by popular demand!  The Baker's Market is a Saturday market starting up again on Oct. 2 - Dec. 11.   Inspired by farmers markets (no veggies please), just lots of sweet & savoury baked goodies. 11am-3 pm.  Enter through the back door at #115-408 East Kent Avenue South , Vancouver , BC   V5X 2X7 . for more info.

Ongoing to December 31, 2010
Vancouver International Biennale. Celebrate sculpture, new media & performance in public spaces. Themed "IN-TRANSIT-ION", the 2009-2011 Vancouver Biennale expands beyond monumental scultpure installations along park, bike lane & urban plazas, to include a range of works on the new Canada Line Rapid Transit system. Bringing internationally renowned artists to our communities, the Vancouver Biennale acts as an open air museum, where art is accessible 365 days a year for all to enjoy. See our website for locations throughout the city.

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