Going Out

Top 10 things-to-do-with-your-kids-so-you-maintain-your-sanity-over-the-Christmas-break


December 1 to 19: Anne & Gilbert — The Musical, National Arts Centre. This classic Canadian tale chronicles the continuing adventures of Anne Shirley as she tackles her new job in Avonlea and tries to make sense of her feelings for Gilbert Blythe. From $55. Theatre. 53 Elgin St., 866-850-2787


December 1 to 19: A Christmas Story, Ottawa Little Theatre. This holiday classic follows Ralphie Parker in his pursuit of the best Christmas present of all time: a Red Ryder BB gun. Warning: he might shoot his eye out! $25. 400 King Edward Ave., 613-233-8948.


Until December 20: Stanley’s Christmas Village, Stanley’s Olde Maple Farm. Ever wondered how Santa gets to all the children everywhere in a single night? The secret: elf outposts! And there’s one just near us, at Stanley’s Olde Maple Farm. Led by a jolly old elf, he’ll take children on a magical sleigh ride through an enchanted forest to the elf village that includes a tour of the wrapping warehouse, the dental office, the candy day care (imagine that!), Ginger’s Bakery, even The Cave! Reservations required. Tickets are $12.50. Check website for available times.  Stanley’s Olde Maple Farm is at 2452 Yorks Corners Road, Edwards, Ontario. (613) 821-2751


December 12 and 13 & 14: Ballet Jörgen’s The Nutcracker The classic Tchaikovsky ballet is given a Canadian touch with backdrops taken from paintings by the Group of Seven. Centrepointe Theatre — two shows on December 12: 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. All ages. From $43. 101 Centrepointe Dr., 613-580-2700, centrepointetheatre.ca. Shenkman Arts Centre — one show on December 13: 7 p.m.; two shows on December 14: 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. From $38. All ages. 245 Centrum Blvd., 613-580-2787


December 19 to 23: Make Your Own Viking Jewelry, Canada History Museum. Vikings were renowned for their swords, axes, helmets, but did you know that their craftsmen also made elaborate jewelry? Check out the new Vikings exhibition and join in on a jewelry-making workshop each day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fashion wire into spirals, braids, shapes, and symbols while drawing upon ancient teachings and powerful traditions. Ages 5+. Free with admission. 100 Laurier Street Gatineau, 1-800-555-5621.

Inspire your children’s musical inclinations by bringing them to the The Next Generation Leahy Christmas Show on December 22 at the National Arts Centre.


December 22: The Next Generation Leahy Christmas Show, National Arts Centre. The youngest generation of the family known for its infectious Celtic music delights audiences with their musical skills, with even the youngest children playing a variety of instruments. “This rare talent in children so young is an inspiration to other children and families alike, showing just what young people are capable of.” Who knows, the show may inspire your child on a musical path! One show left: 1:30 p.m. Ages 4 to 13. From $33. Studio. 53 Elgin St., 866-850-2787


December 26, 2015 to January 3, 2016: A Pioneer Winter! Canada Agriculture Museum. Ever wondered how the pioneers lived during winter? Walk through a pioneer homestead-themed display and see how a Canadian pioneer family may have lived: what they used to warm themselves, how they lit the home, how they made clothing, and what handmade toys they created for gift giving. There’s also a gingerbread house on display and the demonstration kitchen will be baking up Christmas treats. All ages. Free with admission. Open each day from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Closed Christmas Day. 901 Prince of Wales Drive, 613-991-3044.


December 26, 2015 to January 3, 2016: Pollination Challenge, Canada Museum of Nature. Children will get a chance to bee a pollinator in this adventure, as they zoom around the Bird Gallery in search of hidden flowers. Got a bee or a butterfly costume lying around? Wear it. If you don’t have one, the Nature Museum will provide one for your child. There’s even prizes! Free with admission. Takes place each day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Bird Gallery. Closed on Christmas Day. 240 McLeod St., 613-566-4700.


December 26, 2015 to January 3, 2016: Explore a New Planet, Canadian Aviation and Space Museum. The space colonists on planet Kepler-500 have sent an SOS! An alien lifeform is depleting their resources and they need your child’s help. Set up a science camp, replenish an agriculture-based food supply, and explore the planet’s surface in search of water, signs of life, and geological samples. With the help of a special robotic rover, collect samples and study invasive alien species in the base’s lab pod. Ages 5+, free with admission. Each day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed Christmas Day. 11 Aviation Parkway, 1-866-442-4416.


December 29, 2015 to January 3, 2016: The Wizard of Oz, National Arts Centre. Join Dorothy, the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion on their classic journey to meet the Wizard of Oz. From $39. Southam Hall. 53 Elgin St., 866-850-2787