12 things to do in Montreal today: Sunday, December 23

Dec 21 2018, 7:06 pm

It may be a Sunday today, but there’s a bunch of weight behind this one. Perhaps you’re settling in to Montreal to visit family, or maybe you’re getting ready to host. Regardless, there’s a slew of great events happening in the city today, December 23.

Natrel Skating Rink

montreal old port skating rink

Old Port Skating rink

Known for its outstanding quality of ice, excellent facilities, and breathtaking views of the city and the Saint Lawrence River, this is the place to go outdoor skating in Montreal.

There’s no better way to stick it to winter than bundling up and hitting the ice.

The chilled 2,500 square metre rink features a cozy village right in front of the ice and is a puck’s throw away from Bistro Bonsecours for a little post-game refresher.

Natrel’s Skating Rink plays rock, classical and jazz music on large outdoor speakers to add to your soundtrack of whizzing down the ice.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time:¬†10 am ‚Äď 10 pm
Where: Natrel Skating Rink, Bonsecours Basin
Price:¬†$6.95 general admission, $4.90 kids aged 6 ‚Äď 12, free for children under 6

Pente à Neige

No offence, Mont Tremblant, but we might hit the slopes a bit closer to home this weekend as La Pente à Neige has constructed a man-made ski hill at Parc Ignace-Bourget, which opens this weekend.

If the weather holds up, the second edition of the urban hill is big enough for up to 250 people and there’s also a mini slope on site to accommodate up to 50 mini-skiers.

The hill welcomes skiers, snowboarders, tubers and sledders of any age and features a cosily heated yurt, mulled wine, hot chocolate and music.

Guests can bring their own equipment or it can be rented on site.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time: 10 am ‚Äď 6 pm
Where: Parc Ignace-Bourget
Price: Free admission

Luminothérapie

Place des Festivals

Quartier des Spectacles

Place des Festivals is fusing dominos, music and lights in bringing Montreal the holiday cheer.

The 9th edition of Luminoth√©rapie, Quebec‚Äôs largest temporary public art installation, is called ‚ÄúEffet domino‚ÄĚ by Ingrid Ingrid. The installation will feature 120 giant dominos spread out across several different stations. The public is invited to play with them, each creating different music and luminous effects in the process.

The dominos are all topple-able as a musical orchestra of dominos illuminate in a rainbow of pastel hues and sounds.

If you don’t believe us, check out some pictures from the first week of¬†Luminoth√©rapie¬†here.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time:¬†12 pm ‚Äď 10 pm
Where: Place des Festivals, Jeanne Mance
Price: Free

Hockey History Exhibit

The Hockey Cup History travelling exhibit opens on Friday at the Dorval Museum of Local History and Heritage.

Hockey fans can take a look at trophies, rings, hockey sticks, archival footage and over 50 hockey-related artifacts. Visitors are also invited to play a hockey tabletop game as well as a ‚Äėdesign your own goalie mask‚Äô workshop.

When: From now until April 17
Time:¬†1:30 pm ‚Äď 4:30 pm, Thursday to Sunday
Where: 1850 Lakeshore Drive, Dorval
Price: Free

Ogilvy’s Christmas Display

Ogilvy's Christmas window display

McCord Museum

Ogilvy’s Christmas window display, a holiday fixture at the corner of Ste. Catherine and rue de la Montagne has found a new home.

The annual scenes of stuffed animals interacting in mechanical settings, which has delighted Montrealers since 1947, has been donated to the McCord Museum where they will be on display every day in December.

When: From now until December 31
Time: 24/7
Where: McCord Museum
Price: Free

Mad Men Party

Mayfair is inviting Mad Men fans to join a holiday cocktail dressed in your best attire.

DJ Forrest and DJ Truspin will make sure to set the mood accordingly by spinning tunes.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time: 7 pm Р3 am
Where: Mayfair Cocktail Bar, 451 rue Rachel
Price: Free

Notre-Dame Basilica

Easter events Montreal

jiawangkun/ Shutterstock

Celebrate Sunday mass at Montreal’s most viewed structure at 11 am and hear a 25-person choir accompanied by the organ. Or, take a walking tour of the basilica which is an absolutely gorgeous spectacle. It is filled with hundreds of wooden carvings, several religious statues, and gigantic stained glass windows.

When: The Notre-Dame Basilica is open year round
Time:¬†12:30 pm ‚Äď 4 pm on Sundays (mass starts at 11 am)
Where: 110 Rue Notre Dame Ouest
Price: Free

Alight at Night

outdoor light

Upper Canada Village/Facebook

Lights (a lot of them), camera… action Christmas! One of the country’s biggest outdoor light festivals is ready for you and the holidays.

Now that the Gardens of Light festival has packed up for 2018, Instagrammers need to get their lighting fix somewhere else so why not make a day of it?

From the enchantment of horse-drawn wagons to a life-size toy train, this holiday road trip will take you down the 401 to a magical place. There will be carolling, festive dining, and of course, Santa will be making a visit to take in all your Christmas wishes.

If you get cold, warm-you-up beverages will be for sale at the outdoor Carousel Corner Café, where two new holiday huts offer a cozy shelter to snuggle up in.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time: 5 pm to 9 pm (4 pm to 10 pm on Saturdays)
Where: Upper Canada Village, 13740 County Rd 2, Morrisburg, On
Price:¬†$12 ‚Äď $16, depending on age

Slava’s Snowshow

Slava’s Snowshow is a stage show created and staged by Russian performance artist Slava Polunin. The show won the Drama Desk Award for Unique Theatrical Experience and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Special Theatrical Event.

Hosted by Just for Laughs at the timeless Th√©√Ętre St-Denis, the show will run for 15 dates, a variety of which have two or three shows per day.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time: 3 pm, 7 pm, 7:30 pm
Where:¬†Th√©√Ętre St-Denis, 1594 St-Denis
Price: $46 ‚Äď $93.50, available¬†online

Cirque du Soleil: Corteo

Helium dance (Dominique Lemieux/Cirque du Soleil)

Corteo has come home. The Cirque du Soleil touring production premiered in Montreal in April 2005 and it’s back until the end of the month.

Corteo, which means ‚Äúcortege‚ÄĚ in Italian, is a joyous procession, a festive parade imagined by a clown. The show brings together the passion of the actor with the grace and power of the acrobat to plunge the audience into a theatrical world of fun, comedy and spontaneity situated in a mysterious space between heaven and earth.

When: Sunday, December 23
Time: 1 pm, 3:30 pm, 5 pm and 7:30 pm
Where: Centre Bell, 1909 avenue des Canadiens de Montreal
Price:¬†$62.50 ‚Äď $171.50, available¬†online

Nordic Square

Head to the Old Port and stand by an outdoor wood fire with a warm (maybe boozy) drink in hand. Enjoy performances by choirs, storytellers, Indigenous artists and much more. New to the Square this year is the luminous public art installations, including an enormous bear, shimmering light prisms and Bernard, the giant moose.

When: December 23 and 27-30
Time: 4 pm Р9 pm on Friday, 12 pm Р9 pm on Saturday and Sunday
Where: Places Jacques Cartier, Old Montreal
Price: Free

The Nutcracker Ballet

The Nutcracker/Goh Ballet

For the 55th year, the full-length rendition of Les Grands Ballet’s magical The Nutcracker returns to Montreal.

Choreographed by the late Quebecer Fernand Nault and based on German author ETA Hoffman’s original tale, the theatre play embodies the spirit of Christmas with its graceful entertainment, magical scenery and stunning costumes, to Tchaikovsky’s irresistible musical score.

The story tells the tale of Clara, who receives a beautiful nutcracker for Christmas. The young girl is then swept into a fairytale world in which the nutcracker becomes a prince, while mice and rats battle an army of toy soldiers.

When: Sundday, December 23
Time: 2 pm and 7:30 pm
Where: Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier, Place des Arts
Price:¬†$99 ‚Äď $144, available,¬†online

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