13 things to do in Calgary this weekend: December 31 to January 2
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It’s just about time to ring in the start of 2022, and there are plenty of things to do in Calgary this weekend to celebrate the new year.
Drive through a huge outdoor Christmas light display, take advantage of the final days of free admission at Canada’s National Music Centre, enjoy some dinner theatre, visit a digital immersion gallery, and much more.
Get out there this weekend and make the most of the final days of 2021 and start the new year off right with one (or more!) of these YYC activities.
Here are 13 of the best things to do in and around Calgary this weekend.
Go tubing at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park
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What: If skiing or snowboarding isn’t your thing, try a different way of flying down the hill this season with the tube park at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park. The Servus Tube Park boasts eight lanes, a dedicated magic carpet, and the option for sliders to link together and go down at the same time.
When: Saturdays, Sundays, and select Fridays through the winter season, and daily from December 18 to January 2
Time: Two-hour time slots are available at 10 am, 12:30 pm, and 3:30 pm, 4 pm, and 6:30 pm on select Fridays
Where: WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park (88 Canada Olympic Road SW, Calgary)
Tickets: Available now; tickets cost $20 for morning tubing and $25 for afternoons on weekends, $25 throughout the holiday season, and $15 on select Friday evenings
Burton Cummings and Band – NYE show
What: Burton Cummings is basically Canadian rock music royalty, and you can listen to him perform live in Calgary on New Year’s Eve. See Burton Cummings and his band play all the hits at the Grey Eagle Resort and Casino during this 8 pm show.
When: December 31
Time: 8 pm
Where: Grey Eagle Resort and Casino (3777 Grey Eagle Drive, Calgary)
Cost: Tickets available from $59
TELUS Spark’s Sparkle Sparkle
What: TELUS Spark Science Centre is brightening up the holidays with Sparkle Sparkle, an incredible indoor light display boasting thousands of LED lights, all arranged to create a magical (and warm) winter experience and plenty of Instagram-worthy photo ops.
At 5:30 pm on select days between November 25 and January 2, the science centre transforms into a twinkling wonderland, featuring a glowing LED fire to “warm up” near, a massive shimmering winter palace, and more.
When: Wednesday through Sunday from November 25 to December 19, daily from December 20 to January 2 (closed December 24, 25, and 31)
Time: 5:30 to 9:30 pm
Where: TELUS Spark Science Centre (220 St. George’s Drive NE, Calgary)
Tickets: $19 for adults, $13 for youth (ages three to 17)
Ring in the new year
What: There are plenty of ways to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Calgary, from a fireworks livestream, to skating right up until midnight, enjoying a Mexican feast or cheers-ing with a local beer at one of the city’s breweries. Check out our list of NYE celebrations happening in and around Calgary on December 31.
When: December 31
Where: Numerous venues in and around Calgary
Cost: Varies by location
Get into Studio Bell for free
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What: Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre, celebrates its five-year anniversary with free admission through the rest of the year. Take advantage of the final month of this offer, and check out new and updated exhibits, catch instrument show-and-tells, and delve into the history of iconic Canadian musicians.
When: December 18 to 31
Time: December 18, and 19 from 10 am to 5 pm, December 20 to 24 from 11 am to 3 pm, and December 26 to 31 from 11 am to 3 pm. The museum will be closed on December 25 and January 1
Where: Studio Bell (850 4th Street SE, Calgary)
Cost: Free; reserve your tickets online now
Drive through the Christmas lights at Spruce Meadows
What: Stay cozy and warm in your car while getting in the festive spirit. Drive through stunning displays of Christmas lights at Spruce Meadows without having to set foot outside during Calgary’s chilly winter evenings.
When: Friday through Sunday from December 10, 2021, to January 2, 2022 (closed on Christmas Day)
Time: 5 to 10 pm
Where: Spruce Meadows (18011 Spruce Meadows Way SW, Calgary)
Otipemisiwak exhibition at Fort Calgary
What: Fort Calgary has launched Otipemisiwak, an exhibition of contemporary visual art, to celebrate Métis Week (November 14 to 20) and remaining on display until June 2022. The exhibit showcases recent works by Daphne Boyer, a visual artist and plant scientist, using a photo-based technique that mirrors spectacular traditional Métis beading.
When: November 19, 2021, to June 26, 2022
Time: Fort Calgary hours (currently 11 am to 6 pm Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays)
Where: Fort Calgary (750 9th Avenue SE, Calgary)
Cost: $10 for general admission to Fort Calgary, or free for youth age 17 and under and First Nations, Métis, and Inuit community members
Nightrise at the Banff Gondola
What: Pursuit’s latest experience, Nightrise, combines multimedia, storytelling, and nature at the Banff Gondola for an immersive, multi-sensory journey like no other. The event will bring light and sound together to share a new and inspiring perspective in the heart of the Rockies. At Sulphur Mountain’s peak, guests can explore the many levels of the summit building and enjoy Rockies-inspired eats and drinks. Outside on the viewing decks, guests will discover wonders that only emerge as the night begins to rise.
When: December 2, 2021, to March 12, 2022
Time: Gondola upload time slots between 5:10 and 8:10 pm
Where: Banff Gondola (100 Mountain Avenue, Banff)
Tickets: Starting at $56 for adults
Find Christmas Downtown celebrations at the CORE Shopping Centre
What: Downtown Calgary’s CORE Shopping Centre will feature a variety of festive events and activations this season. Highlights include live musical performances, a 45-foot Christmas tree, photo ops with Santa, and a 24-day countdown calendar of giveaways on Instagram. The CORE will also bring back its stunning 1959 GMC vintage truck, creating a sought-after Instagrammable backdrop for Calgary shoppers.
When: November 26 to December 31
Time: The shopping centre is open 11 am to 5 pm Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 pm on Sundays
Where: The CORE Shopping Centre – second level glass bridge (324 8th Avenue SW, Calgary)
Cost: The CORE’s holiday celebrations are free to partake in; however, the shopping centre is collecting monetary donations and items on behalf of The Mustard Seed
Beyond Van Gogh Calgary
What: Beyond Van Gogh has extended its immersive exhibit in Calgary for a final time, giving you one last chance to “Gogh” check it out before the end of the year. Get up close and personal with Van Gogh’s work through larger-than-life projections of his paintings. To round out this experience of the senses, the exhibit is accompanied by the artist’s own words, set to a symphonic score.
When: On now until December 31
Time: Varies by day; timed reservations available online
Where: The BMO Centre on Stampede Park (20 Roundup Way SE)
Tickets: Starting at $33.99 for adults, available now
What: A Calgary favourite, ZOOLIGHTS transforms the zoo into a magical winter wonderland. Check out this event for all the family-friendly fun and Christmas vibes from November 19 to January 2.
When: November 19, 2021, to January 2, 2022
Time: 5 to 9 pm
Where: Calgary Zoo (210 St. George’s Drive NW, Calgary)
Cost: $21.95 for general admission, $14.95 for children
Summer of ’69 at Jubilations Dinner Theatre
What: Get taken back to the Summer of ’69 in this show inspired by the popular Bryan Adams song. Watch and listen to the story of peace, love, long hair, and music that would change the world, and enjoy a delicious meal alongside your entertainment at Jubilations Dinner Theatre.
When: October 23, 2021, to January 8, 2022
Time: Varies by date
Where: Jubilations Dinner Theatre (1002 37th Street SW, Calgary)
Cost: Starting at $69.95 for adults
Hygge Hut pop-up in East Village
What: East Village is bringing snuggly vibes to Calgary with the return of its popular Hygge Hut this winter. The Scandinavian-style seasonal pop-up opened this past weekend in a new location, and it’s bigger and better than ever this year. Visitors will find the Hygge Hut in C-Square, at 4th Street and 7th Avenue SE with fire pits to warm up by, food trucks, live music, ice sculptures, and games, along with a jam-packed schedule of other community programming.
When: November 12, 2021, to March 2022
Time: Fires lit on Fridays from 2 to 7 pm and Saturdays, Sundays, and stat holidays from noon to 6 pm (weather permitting)
Where: C-Square (4th Street and 7th Avenue SE, Calgary)
Cost: FREE community programming