A week into December and Christmas has well and truly arrived. There are plenty of opportunities to get your Christmas shopping done with the Old Bus Depot Markets open 10 am – 4 pm Saturday and Sunday, and both the Handmade Markets and the Canberra Christmas Markets on this weekend at Exhibition Park. The Handmade Markets will be on in the Budawang and Coorong Pavilions, 5–9 pm Friday night and 10 am–4 pm Saturday and Sunday. The Canberra Christmas Markets will be on in the Fitzroy Pavilion, 9 am – 3 pm Saturday and Sunday. There are also plenty of opportunities to listen to Christmas music with the Australian Chamber Orchestra performing Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, the RSPCA’s rescheduled 12 Barks of Christmas event, The Salvation Army Band playing carols with Lucy Sugarman at the Salvo’s community event Joyeaux Noel, and Sparrow-Folk’s A Very Nestie Christmas at The Street Theatre. If you’re not into Christmas, I’m not sure what to recommend—just hang in there until January!
Where: Glebe Park
When: Friday 5 – 10 pm, Saturday & Sunday 12 – 10 pm
This year, the ACT Government has moved its Christmas festivities to Glebe Park. Starting this Friday and running until Christmas Eve, this event will include a forest of real Christmas trees, lots of Christmas lights, food vans, gingerbread cubby houses, a pop-up bar hosted by Capital Brewing, carols, activities and visits from Santa. This weekend’s activities include Nomad the Magician and Ernst the Elf; the Boogie Buddies and TubaChristmas on Friday night; as well as inflatable rides, a Nerf Arena, and a maze and jumping castle from 12 – 6 pm on Saturday and Sunday. Entry to the event is free, but some activities will have a fee and the Government is partnering with Red Nose again so there will volunteers wandering around asking for donations.
Where: Llewellyn Hall
When: 6:30 pm
The Australian Chamber Orchestra is finishing the year with a series of performances around Australia of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, featuring members of the Choir of London and Nicholas Mulroy as the Evangelist. This Friday is Canberra’s turn. The performance starts at 6:30 pm and runs for just under three hours. There will be a talk by Vincent Plush beforehand from 5:45 pm, and an extended ‘meal break’ interval in the middle. Tickets from $49 + bf, but note there aren’t many available, book here.
Where: The Street Theatre
When: 7:30 pm
If you are looking for some silliness this silly season, Catherine Crowley and Juliet Moody, aka Sparrow-Folk, are getting out their ukuleles and putting on a Christmas version of their musical comedy show this Friday night featuring parodies of Christmas songs as well as their own originals. Tickets are $30 adults, $25 concession, and $27 for a group of 4+, book here.
Where: The Salvation Army, Elouera Street, Braddon
When: 2 – 6 pm
The Salvos are hosting a free community Christmas event this Sunday afternoon featuring performances by Mickey Sulit, the Ten Reasons Band, and Recorder Rondo. There will be a Christmas market, jumping castle, petting zoo, face painting and games on the lawn. And finish the afternoon singing carols with Lucy Sugarman and The Salvation Army Band.
Where: RSPCA Weston Shelter, 12 Kirkpatrick St
When: 4 – 7 pm
After getting rained-off last week, the RSPCA has moved Canberra’s only dog-friendly Christmas carol event to its shelter in Weston this Sunday. The 12 Barks of Christmas is hosted by RSPCA ACT and is an evening of Christmas carols, live music, delicious food and drink and activities for your dogs. There will be a ‘Santa Paws’ Photobooth and a prize for the most Christmassy-dressed dog! Tickets are $30 for adults, $20 for concession and $15 for under 17s, with all proceeds going to the RSPCA ACT, and dogs get in free! Ticket prices are less if you book online in advance. Book here.