The holidays are a magical time of year – a time where life is filled with gifts for loved ones, heartfelt cards, great food, music and classic Christmas performances. There’s nothing like bundling up for a day of shopping for great local gifts then stopping to support a local charity. Get dressed up and step out into those long, bright wintry nights and go see live music or your favourite seasonal production. Or stay in your comfiest clothes, slip on some fuzzy slippers, mix your favourite potable and enjoy your holiday favourites in comfort. From contemporary holiday music to the Nutcracker, charity events to holiday markets, south Vancouver Island has something for everyone to get a dose of Christmas cheer.
This year, everyone’s holiday season is going to look a little different but for those of you who are at the Manor Suite Off Rockland or staying at the Beacon Hill View Condo and love getting out there to explore, there are still lots of in-person events happening around the city! Have you ever dreamt of travelling in time to see what Christmas was like in yesteryear? Well now you can! Visitors to The Royal BC Museum will be able wander through cobbled streets of Old Town dressed to the nines in holiday cheer and peek into the elaborate and meticulously laid out rooms, listen to the sounds of hooves on the pavement and catch a Charlie Chaplain short in the mini theater. If you’re looking for somewhere to really soak up the spirit of the season and get a few gifts checked off your list, the Bastion Square Christmas Market is a must visit. Experience the feeling of a small town market with tons of local artisans in BC’s beautiful capital city. It’s a great place to snag thoughtful, one-of-a-kind pieces for everyone on your list. Just a short trip north of Victoria and near to Heron View Cottage is one of Canada’s most celebrated country music performers will be serenading the audience with all of holiday standards! So if you’re looking to head out for some live music, you’ll be hard pressed to find anything better to get into the holiday spirit than George Canyon’s Acoustic Christmas at the Mary Winspear Center in Sidney BC.
Most years, there are so many holiday events happening and not nearly enough time to get to all of them. One of the benefits of this unprecedented time is that so many organizers have taken their events online which means that you can ‘attend’ as many as you want without having to take off your slippers! This year, the 12th Annual Gingerbread Showcase is online and in person! This year’s theme, “Coastal Living” has been interpreted by thirty-three talented bakers who have each created unique and incredible displays. Browse their masterpieces, read about the process and donate to help Habitat for Humanity raise funds to build affordable housing in North Saanich. You can also download a map of where these confectionery creations are being displayed in Victoria and Sidney and go see them from outside. If you’re staying at either Dalmeny Farm Estate it’s a great way to explore the area! There have been so many versions of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol it can be difficult to choose a favourite! This year if you’re in the mood for something a little outside of the box then be sure to buy tickets to the Blue Bridge Theater’s, online, one-man version starring Sanjay Talwar. It’s a great way to spend an evening at Nature’s Gate Executive Vacation Home. This reimagining is sure to delight kids of all ages! If something traditional is more to your taste, then you won’t want to miss the Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker Ballet. The cameras will take you backstage to hear from the artists, designers and creators of this production to see how the magic is made. You can experience the holiday classic in a whole new light with this ground-breaking debut right from the comfort of Oceanside Lodge On Saanich Inlet! Hermann’s Jazz Club has been a staple in Victoria’s art and music scene for 40 years and has always had an incredible line-up of live music – this year is no different. Hermann’s has moved all of their performances to livestreams which means that you can enjoy the incredible talents that grace the stage without having to make the trip. Curl up on the couch and livestream Charlie Brown Christmas: Music From the Network Television Special or make a festive feast in the gorgeous kitchen at one of our oceanfront properties and watch Christmas with the Maureen Washington Quartet. If you love a good holiday spectacle, then you certainly don’t want to miss Leisa Way and the Wayward Wind Band’s Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree. With glitzy costumes and incredible energy, this band is sure to get even the biggest Scrooges rockin’ around right alongside them!
No matter how different the holidays are this year, or where you’re celebrating from, there are still lots of ways to make your Christmas merry and bright with these holiday events.