Free or Cheap Christmas Holiday Events in Toronto 2018

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Kidzfest at Yonge Dundas Square is one of the most popular free or cheap Christmas holiday events in Toronto 2018
Kidzfest at Yonge Dundas Square in Toronto
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UPDATED FOR 2019: The Christmas holiday season is fun, but it sure can be hard on the wallet! It’s important to establish and follow a budget during the holidays because you don’t want to facing the new year ridden in debt. These Christmas holiday events in Toronto 2019 are free or cheap so you’ll be able to catch the Christmas spirit without forking out a lot of cash. You might also be interested in reading about family friendly Christmas events in Toronto.

The Bentway outdoor skating rink in Toronto
The Bentway outdoor skating rink in Toronto

The Bentway Skate Trail

The Bentway Skate Trail outdoor ice rink opens on Friday, December 20, 2019. Located underneath The Gardiner Expressway, The Bentway features a figure-eight skate trail in the heart of downtown Toronto. Skate rentals and skating lessons will be offered again this year and there will be curated food and beverage options on select dates. Enjoy an expanded winter village with blankets, warming lounges, and fire pits. Access to The Bentway is free and accessible with free Wifi courtesy of Beanfield. The Bentway is located at 250 Fort York Blvd near Strachan Avenue and Lake Shore Blvd. W.


Kidzfest at Yonge Dundas Square is one of the most popular free or cheap Christmas holiday events in Toronto 2018
Kidzfest at Yonge Dundas Square in Toronto

Kidzfest at Yonge Dundas Square

Kidzfest is a free event at Yonge-Dundas Square on Sat., Nov. 30, 2019 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Kids can enjoy letter writing to Santa; stage performances of science and music; arts and crafts; meet and greet with characters from Paw Patrol and Hatchimals, as well as science and technology activities. Other fun activities include face painting, bouncy castles, sweet maple syrup and other treats while spending the day with hosts from TVO Kids.

The Salvation Army Presents Christmas In The Square 2019

Bring your family to enjoy this free holiday event in Toronto: The Salvation Army Presents Christmas In The Square on Friday, November 29, 2019. Enjoy musical performances by The Salvation Army Band, The Salvation Army Choir and the Rolling Stronz Band, as well as an appearance by Dora the Explorer and a reading of “The Christmas Story”. Enjoy pizza, donuts and hot chocolate. The Salvation Army will be with their kettles accepting donations for their “Christmas Kettle Campaign”. Live entertainment starts at 5:30 p.m., hosted by Juno-award-winning R&B artist Dru who will also be performing.                            

Free Concert with The Metropolitan Choir at Roy Thomson Hall 2019

Enjoy a free concert at Roy Thomson Hall with the Orpheus Choir on Tues., Dec. 17, 2019 at 12 p.m. The Metropolitan Choir, conducted by Dr. Patricia Wright with organists Timothy Wisnicki and Patricia Wright, will sing a diverse program of Christmas music including Renaissance carols, popular English carols and holiday favourites. Front doors open at 11 a.m.; auditorium opens at 11:30 a.m.

A Christmas Carol at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church

Enjoy a free evening of seasonal music and dramatic readings from Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol on Sat., Nov. 30, 2019 at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church on 73 Simcoe Street. Historic St. Andrew’s Church at 73 Simcoe Street will be decked with garlands, lanterns and candles to provide a Victorian atmosphere setting for Dickens’ classic Christmas tale. Reading A Christmas Carol will be the renowned tenor and CBC Radio host Ben Heppner, classical music educator Rick Phillips, soprano Neema Bickersteth and actress Patricia Garnett-Smith. The Aldbury Garden Brass Quintet will perform carols between readings. Enjoy free Ginger Molasses cookies and hot apple cider afterwards at the reception. Admission is free, but the church is requesting a donation to the St. Andrew’s Refugee Sponsorship Program. Register at Eventbrite.

Festive Front Street Windows at Fairmont Royal York Hotel

Take the family to the Fairmont Royal York to see their 12 storied Festive Windows, designed by Frank Rea. Each window has its own holiday theme. The windows will be unveiled on Thursday, November 28, 2019 at 6:45 p.m. after the tree lighting in the lobby at 6 p.m. The festive windows will be on display until the end of the year. Window displays are located on the Front Street exterior of the hotel.

Aurora Winter Festival is one of the popular free or cheap Christmas holiday events in Toronto, photo courtesy Aurora Winter Festival
Aurora Winter Festival, photo courtesy Aurora Winter Festival

Aurora Winter Festival at Ontario Place

Ontario Place is undergoing a transformation as evidenced by the new winter festival taking place Nov 22, 2019 to January 5, 2020. The Aurora Winter Festival will take you into a mystical world featuring the Arctic Retreat, Luminous Gardens, Disco Den and Whimsical Forest inspired by the North Pole. These lands are populated by ice elves, ice queens and even Santa. Kids can play on the 170-foot slide covered in snow, make crafts at Santa’s Workshop, enjoy carnival rides including a 60 foot Ferris Wheel and a tube park or take selfies at the 50 foot LED light dome. Bring your skates so the whole family can skate on the Frozen Pond. Shop for holiday gifts at the vendor booths along Main Street. Tickets start at $14.99 and can be purchased online.

DeClute Light Up The Beach

Come down to DeClute Light Up The Beach to see Santa illuminate the Christmas lights on the trees lining the shores of Lake Ontario on Friday, November 29, 2019 at 7 p.m. More than 80,000 individual LED bulbs will decorate trees along the boardwalk. Lights will shine nightly until late February along the Boardwalk from the Leuty Lighthouse to The Balmy Beach Club.

Please let us know in the comment section if you have any suggestions for free or cheap Christmas holiday events in Toronto 2019.