Local Events & Festivals

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IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT 2020 FESTIVALS: Due to COVID-19, some of the festivals below have been cancelled or have introduced new guidelines. Check the event website for the most recent updates.

  • Lions Festival of Lights is only displaying a small number of lights to discourage large crowds from attending this year.
  • Zoolights is offering timed tickets for visitors, which may be subject to change depending on provincial guidelines.
  • CP Holiday Rail offered an online performance on December 12, but is otherwise cancelled.
  • The Calgary Maple Sugar Festival is cancelled.

In Calgary & area, there are plenty of local festivals to choose from! Remember to dress warmly for outdoor events. Please check the organizer’s website ahead of time for exact dates, times and other details. You can also look for local events on Eventbrite, Curiocity, Calgary’s Child or Family Fun Calgary.

Lake Louise Ice Carving Festival: Watch skilled artists carve blocks of ice into magical sculptures at this 12-day festival in late January. Plus, get a stunning view of Lake Louise in the wintertime. Viewing the sculptures is free! Click here to learn more.

Lions Festival of Lights: Check out this free outdoor light display at the Confederation Park Golf Course, which runs from late November to early January. There is also a tobogganing hill right next to the lights, so bring your sled! Click here to learn more.

Zoolights: Every winter, from late November to early January, the Calgary Zoo is transformed by two million twinkling lights. This makes a great family outing, complete with firepits, a skating rink, and interactive activities. Tickets are around $15-$20 per person. Click here to learn more.

CP Rail Holiday Train: The Holiday Train is a sight to behold! Decked out in festive lights, it travels across Canada from November to December, featuring live performances at each stop by musical artists and raising money to feed the hungry. The concerts are free to attend, but they encourage participants to make a donation for local food banks. Click here to learn more.

The Calgary Maple Sugar Festival (Cabane à Sucre): Cabane à Sucre is a French Canadian winter tradition of cooling maple syrup on ice to make candy. It’s gooey, sticky, sweet fun. This festival usually occurs in March. Tickets are $9 and up. Visit their Facebook page for updates.

Holiday Markets: Calgary is home to many holiday markets, where you can browse handmade items, local wares and sweet treats. Popular events include the Inglewood Night Market and Market Collective, but you can also attend smaller markets in most Calgary communities. Search online to see if there is a market happening in your neighbourhood.

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