26 things to do in Montreal this weekend: December 7 to 9

Dec 6 2018, 6:15 pm

Welcome back to the weekend, Montreal. With Christmas looming, there’s a slew of great holiday events to check out this weekend, as well as some music, some laughs and some food. Here are 26 things to check out in the city this weekend, from December 7 to 9.

Friday, December 7

Dream Land

Christmas display

Sami Hajjar’s Christmas Display/Facebook

Once the ‘Christmas Display House’ gets going, it’s officially the holidays. Sami Hajjar of the West Island will be continuing his ‘Christmas Display‘ house again this holiday season, but he’s upping his game.

Compared to last year’s ‘Frozen Land,’ the upcoming ‘Dream Land’ will feature 250,000 lights, inflatables and synchronized music to five Disney songs, four times a day.

When: From now until December 25
Time: 6 pm – 9 pm (Every hour)
Where: 9035 Jean-Bourdon Avenue, West Island
Price: Free

Kompany Concert

Kompany has emerged from the shadows of anonymity to present one of the more promising bass music projects. Having perfected his craft in the esteemed halls of Icon Collective, Kompany is now bringing his music to a global audience, and specifically, Montreal on December 7.

When: Friday, December 7
Time: 10 pm – 3 am
Where: Le Belmont, 4483 Boulevard Saint Laurent
Price: $15, available online

Montreal Improv’s Main Event

How about some improv comedy to start off the weekend?

The ultimate improv competition in the city is happening on Friday as two teams collide for their weekly, main event.

Through a series of match-ups and challenges, all initiated through audience suggestions and interaction, only one team will leave Montreal Improv with the title of champion.

When: Friday, December 7
Time: 8:30 pm
Where: Montreal Improv, 3697 Boulevard Saint Laurent
Price: $8

Village de Noël de Montréal

Christmas village

magicbeam / Shutterstock

Montreal’s iconic Atwater Market has been transformed into a gorgeous Christmas market.

The third edition of the Village de Noël will feature “twice as many kiosks as years past,” vendors, concerts, light shows, a giant, decked out evergreen tree, holiday treats and outdoor screenings of classic Christmas movies.

As a bonus, the big man himself, Santa Claus, will be on site every Saturday until Christmas.

When: From now until December 23
Time: Weekends from 11:30 am – 9 pm
Where: Place du Marche, corner of St-Ambroise and Atwater
Price: Free

Carols by Candlelight

Enjoy some classic Christmas tunes sung by carolers at Montreal’s timeless St. George’s Anglican Church.

When: Friday, December 7
Time: 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Where: 1001 avenue des Canadiens de Montreal
Price: Free to

Le Marché de Noël chez Maison Pepin


tfsmarchedhiver / Instagram

Maison Pepin has channelled their inner-Harry Potter and have transformed their charming alleyway into a breathtaking rustic Christmas market.

The market itself will feature a variety of locally-made products for sale and DIY workshops from gift packaging to wreath making.

Think about all the Instagramable moments this alleyway presents.

When: From now until December 24
Time: 10 am – 5 pm
Where: 378 Rue St-Paul Ouest
Price: Free

Montreal Bach Festival

The Bach Festival honours Bach and other composers in more than 20 concerts hosted at some of the most beautiful spots of Montreal: Quartier des spectacles, Mont Royal, Le Plateau, Westmount Park.

Hundreds of musicians, singers, and conductors from Quebec and Europe pay tribute to the famous German composer.

The festival has been going on for three weeks and it sums up tonight.

When: Friday, December 7
Time: Varies per selection
Where: Various venues around Montreal
Price: $15 – $42, available online

The Nutcracker Market- Montreal

Every holiday season, the Nutcracker Market brings together hundreds of local artisans for a magical shopping experience.

The market started in 2010 in support of The Nutcracker Fund for Children, the country’s first charity Christmas market symbolizes the kick-off of the holiday celebrations.

Plus, 10% of all exhibitor’s sales go towards the Fund that each year gives disadvantaged children a unique holiday experience that includes a free performance of The Nutcracker, animated creative workshops and gifts.

When: From now until December 9
Time: 11 am – 7 pm (Monday – Wednesday), 11 am – 8 pm (Thursday and Friday), 11 am – 5 pm (Saturday and Sunday)
Where: Palais des congrès
Price: Free

Sara Quinn at the Art Loft

june 15-17

Comedy at the Art Loft/Facebook

Comedy at the Art Loft is the hottest underground comedy show in Montreal. It’s the city’s only weekly bilingual show and is run out of a private loft on Rue Saint Laurent and always packed with people. It feels like a college party, except a comedian is speaking into a microphone.

Every week, Art Loft welcomes a slew of hilarious comedians, DJs and snacks.

This week’s lineup includes Quinn McMorrow as the host and the immensely talented Sara Quinn as the headliner. Featured acts are equally hilarious as Shawn Stenhouse, Rodney Ramsey, Wassim El-Mounzer, Romanelli Perso, Audrey-Anne Dugas and Douph Létourneau hit the stage.

BYOB and 420 friendly. Very 420 friendly.

When: Friday, December 7
Time: Doors open at 9 pm, show starts at 10:30 pm
Where: 4152 Boulevard Saint Laurent
Price: $10 at the door (cash only)

Saturday, December 8

Dave Matthews Band

Dave Matthews Band/Facebook

Dave Matthew’s Band is an American rock band that was formed in Charlottesville, Virginia in 1991. Fronted by Dave Matthews, the band may not have the most original name, but their sound certainly is.

They’ll be at (a probably sold-out) Bell Centre in early December.

When: Saturday, December 8
Time: 8 pm – 11 pm
Where: Bell Centre, 1909 avenue des Canadiens de Montreal
Price: $85.25 – $151.25, available online

Christmas on Mont-Royal Avenue

Mont-Royal Avenue will be getting a holiday makeover, featuring a slew of Christmas activities this month.

The festival will kick off with the Marche de Noël aux flambeaux, an illuminated Christmas market.

This year, 10,000 people are expected to take part in the Marche de Noël. The march starts off at des Compagnons (corner of Mont-Royal and Cartier) and the walk continues through La Fontaine Park. Marchers will be given an illuminated candle while walking to music by three different choirs, Les Voix ferrées, Montréal Gay Men’s Chorus, and la Clique vocale.

When: December 8 to 23
Time: 10 am – 8 pm
Where: Mont-Royal Avenue
Price: Free admission

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: December 8 and 9 and December 13-16, 20-23, 26-31 and January 1-5
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 – $16, depending on age

Village du Père Noël

The Christmas season just isn’t the same without a visit to see Santa. Besides, why take a chance of bumping into the big fella on Christmas Day without getting in some face-time beforehand?

There’s an entire village dedicated to Santa about an hour away from Montreal.

Village du Père Noël is the perfect place for a holiday family getaway. Plus, it’s North of Montreal so in some ways, you’re heading towards the North Pole.

Located in Val-David, the village’s summer activities are transformed into a magical Christmas experience.

Activities include ice skating, tubing, sledding, a petting zoo, and a mini train. And of course, Santa and his elves are on site.

When: Saturday, December 9
Time: 10 am – 5 pm
Where: 987 Route Morin, Val-David
Price: Adults (individuals two years old and older): $18; Grandparents: $16

Fontaine Boréale

Christmas fountain


Christmas is usually associated with snow and ice so how about a little element change? For the third consecutive year, the Christmas fountain known as “Fontaine boréale” is returning during the holiday season.

The immersive and multi-sensory experience features the Complexe Desjardin’s Grande-Place water fountain, completely decked out in the Christmas spirit.

Every hour, the fountain lights and shoots up to the shopping mall’s ceiling, accompanied by music, lights and special effects.

Or, it could actually be magic.

When: Every day in December
Time: Every hour from 4 pm – 10 pm
Where: Complexe Desjardins, 150 rue Ste. Catherine Ouest
Price: Free

Victorian Christmas at the Cartier’s

Discover how fashion styles dating back to 1867 are still in vogue 150 years later. The exhibition showcases elegant Victorian decor and styles, hot drinks by the fireplace, a Christmas card workshop, and champagne.

When: From now until December 21
Time: 10 am – 5 pm on weekdays, 9:30 am – 12 pm on weekends
Where: Sir George-Étienne Cartier National Historic Site
Price: $7.80

High Love Yoga

LOLË is hosting a cannabis-friendly yoga event on Saturday. The class will be run by a local, trained, yoga teacher and a live DJ. Guests are encouraged to smoke and workout — talk about relaxing.

Cannabis will NOT be sold on site.

When: Saturday, December 8
Time: 3:30 pm – 6 pm
Where: LOLË Ste-Catherine, 954 Ste-Catherine Ouest

Natrel Skating Rink

montreal old port skating rink

Old Port Skating rink

A skating rink with Montreal’s Old Port as the backdrop – talk about picturesque.

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 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: December 8, 2018 – March 10, 2019
Time: 10 am – 9 pm (Mondays – Wednesdays), 10 am – 10 pm (Thursdays – Sundays)
Where: Natrel Skating Rink, Bonsecours Basin
Price: $6.95 general admission, $4.90 kids aged 6 – 12, free for children under 6

Marche de Noël aux flambeaux

This year, 10,000 people are expected to take part in the Marche de Noël, an illuminated Christmas march.

The hike starts off at des Compagnons (corner of Mont-Royal and Cartier) and the walk continues through La Fontaine Park. Marchers will be given an illuminated candle while walking to music by three different choirs, Les Voix ferrées, Montréal Gay Men’s Chorus, and la Clique vocale.

Traditional folk music from Chasse-Balcon will also join the march, delighting the crowd with their unique music inspired by Louisian-style porch jams.

When: December 8 to 23
Time: 10 am – 8 pm
Where: Mont-Royal Avenue
Price: Free admission

Le Village du Vilain Sapin – Ugly Christmas Tree Village

Ugly Christmas tree


It’s important to laugh at yourself. And, that’s exactly what this year’s ‘Ugly Christmas Tree Village’ in Whoville Montreal will be doing this holiday season, literally.

The second edition of Le Village du Vilain Sapin features more than just an ugly, Charlie Brown-esque tree as this year’s evergreen is ticklish.

Yes. A ticklish Christmas tree.

Motion detectors and built-in loudspeakers will be incorporated into this year’s Frankentree that will bellow out laughter when guests shake the bottom branches to tickle it.

When: From now until January 2
Time: 5 pm, illumination of the laughing tree at 6 pm
Where: 57 rue Prince Arthur Est
Price: Free

Sunday, December 9

Make Space

Holiday Market/Shutterstock

Make Space is an all-female pop up market that will be selling local goods, all sustainable and handmade, just in time for the holidays.

The market will offer locally made goods, vintage clothes, books, skin-care products, plants, an onsite tarot reader and much more.

The space will be giving out free mulled wine and will be selling hot chocolate, chili and snacks.

Make time for Make Space.

When: Sunday, December 9
Time: 11 am – 7 pm
Where: The Space, 617 rue St. Remi
Price: Free admission, varying prices

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 ‘design your own goalie mask’ workshop.

When: From now until April 17
Time: 1:30 pm – 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: December 1 – 31
Time: 24/7
Where: McCord Museum

Nextdoor Pub & Grill

Nextdoor is the place to on Sundays to eat and drink. They offer deals at both ends of their hours – bottomless caesars and mimosas in the afternoon and 29 cent chicken wings at night. Park yourself at the quaint, cozy, basement pub and see how many cheap and equally tasty wings you can devour.

When: Sunday, December 9
Time: 8 am – 3 pm caesar/mimosa deal, 4 pm-midnight wing special
Where: 5175A Rue Sherbrooke Ouest

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 – 4 pm on Sundays (mass starts at 11 am)
Where: 110 Rue Notre Dame Ouest
Price: Free

Requiem de Mozart Orchestra

L’Orchestre Philharmonique et Chœur des Mélomanes (OPCM) welcomes guests to Mozart’ss Requiem and Britten Lachymae performed by Marina Thibeault.

When: Sunday, December 9
Time: 7 pm – 10 pm
Where: Paroisse de l’Immaculée-Conception, 1855 rue Rachel
Price: $15 – $60, available online

See also

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