Events and festivals

Suburbs

Children building a snowman in a snowy outdoor park with words "Reimagine winter"

The COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for our community. We haven’t been able to gather, socialize and celebrate like we’re used to. More time spent indoors may be making us feel a little more isolated from our community.

So, we’re reimagining how we experience and enjoy the winter season.

Reimagine Winter offers activities, attractions and programs that give community members the outlet they need during these challenging times.

Kitchener is a vibrant and resilient community, and the winter season is still ours to enjoy safely. Let’s reimagine it.

Winter events

More events will be added as they become available. Some events may require pre-registration.

Events are subject to change, subscribe to this page for updates using the subscribe button near the bottom of this page.

Please only participate in activities close to home and if a venue is busy, visit another time. Only park in designated parking spaces.

Remember to follow public health guidelines including only participating with your own household, avoiding crowds and keeping a physical distance of at least six feet or two metres from others, wearing a mask and staying home if you feel unwell.

The City of Kitchener is committed to offering inclusive programs and activities. If you require an accommodation for City-organized events, please call 519-741-2200 ext.7229 or email Inclusion Services.

Outdoor illustrated scene with words "reimagine Outdoors"
Outdoor illustrated scene with words "reimagine indoors"
Outdoor illustrated scene with words "staying connected"

Reimagine outdoors

Reimagine Winter Map

You don't have to look high and low to find fun things to do near you. The all new Reimagine Winter Map makes it easy for residents to locate amenities and attractions close to home. Happy exploring!

How to use the map:

  • Browse through the map by either zooming in on a particular area of the city or by entering your address to locate activities and amenities near you. The legend tab can help you navigate the different types of activities and amenities included in the map. Please note that the activities included on the map are limited to city-run activities and amenities.
  • Read through a collection resident-submitted winter stories and share your own favourite winter activities, experiences and outdoor spaces across the city by clicking the “Share Your Winter Stories” tab. Tell everyone how you're reimagining winter!
Christmas Fantasy

We're keeping the lights on at Victoria Park into the New Year! Lift your spirits and enjoy the colourful displays during an extended season of Christmas Fantasy.

  • Experience with members of your immediate household
  • Lights turn on at dusk and off at midnight every day
  • Visit www.kitchenerevents.ca for more details
Christmas light displays

We're asking residents to keep their festive light displays on into the New Year! Spread and enjoy the cheer in your neighbourhood with beautiful lights making spirits bright.

Check out a Christmas lights map from CTV Kitchener highlighting colourful displays in Waterloo Region.

44 Gaukel St.
We’re shining a light on the murals at 44 Gaukel St! Snap a pic of the murals created by local artists which are being lit for residents to see at nighttime.
Outdoor skating
Outdoor skating rinks are for recreational skating only. Hockey games or practices are not permitted. A maximum of 10 skaters are permitted on the ice at a time. Please limit your group to no more than five people of your immediate household and physical distance from others.
  • Open between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.
  • Plan short visits under an hour
  • Wear a mask
  • View outdoor winter rink locations
Tobogganing

The City of Kitchener inspects and has designated McLennan Park, Hillside Park, and Foxglove Park for offering the safest opportunities to enjoy tobogganing.

To help ease parking congestion at McLennan Park, a temporary one way system has been implemented. Traffic should enter the park from Block Line and exit onto Ottawa Street. Please park in designated parking bays and, if parking is full, park in the Lions Arena parking lot. 

Please follow the signage at the tobogganing hills. These hills are not staffed by the City. While the City tries to incorporate changes to make tobogganing safer, adult supervision is recommended. Use good judgement going up, and down any of the designated hills. 

  • Open during daylight hours
  • Plan short visits for under 15 minutes
  • Wear a mask
  • Please do not use the hill if it's closed
  • Read more about staying safe at toboggan hills
Walking tours

Kitchener is a vibrant community filled with history and charm. What better way to discover it, than by foot!Here are some self-guided walking tours you can do on your own or with your own household this winter.

Holiday Window Tour

Grab a hot beverage and enjoy festive window displays of local businesses in downtown Kitchener during the Holiday Window Tour.

Downtown Kitchener Art Walk

Kitchener has a budding art scene. See all of the art installations and murals within the downtown Kitchener core. Use the Art Walk guide, and happy perusing!

Self-guided tours

Kitchener is rich in history. Explore the heritage of different neighbourhoods, building and artifacts around the city in a self-guided walking tour!

Snowshoeing and hiking
Hiking doesn’t end when we say goodbye to warmer weather. Kitchener is home to diverse parks and trails that make winter hiking fun. Or if you’re up for a challenge, strap on a pair of snowshoes for a unique way to experience the outdoors. For a list of trails, visit www.kitchener.ca/Trails  

Virtual Snow Sculpting Club

You’ve never made a snowman quite like this. Learn about snow sculpting with Matt Morris’s free Virtual Snow Sculpting Club!

You may have seen the Waterloo snow sculptor’s creations on social media. Now he’s showing how you can do it in your own yard or neighbourhood park.

Lightbox sculptures at Doon Pioneer Park Community Centre

Illuminating the front windows of Doon Pioneer Park Community Centre are Memory Lightbox Sculptures by artist Allie Brenner.

The Memory Lightbox Sculptures explore imagery and themes surrounding houses in Kitchener-Waterloo that have now been demolished. Brenner is a local multidisciplinary artist working in illustration, sculpture, installation, drawing, painting, ceramics and print.

The lightboxes are visible during the day, and light up at night!

 Memory House Sculpture

What does your home or neighbourhood mean to you? Community members are experiencing a strong connection with the environment around them right now. Get creative, and show us what that looks like!

Memory House Sculptures portray a home or building in an artistic way.

Local multidisciplinary artist Allie Brenner shows us how to make your own Memory House Sculpture, based on her work featured at Doon Pioneer Park Community Centre.

Grab a camera, explore your neighbourhood, download the template and get creative! To create a Memory House Sculpture, visit www.alliebrenner.com

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Reimagine indoors

Kitchener Market virtual Kids in the Kitchen

Saturdays from 10-11 a.m., free

An online version of our popular cooking classes that can be enjoyed by the whole family, right in your own home. Chef Nicole welcomes you into her kitchen Saturdays on the City of Kitchener Facebook page. For more details visit the Market’s event calendar. No registration required.

 Virtual cooking classes

Cook with us! Join us for a private virtual cooking class, complete with ingredients, where you will learn to make hearty winter soups and stews from scratch. Going over every recipe, step by step, our Market Chef will be available to answer all of your questions in this interactive class. With class registration, you will be given an option to pick up a Kitchener Market bag filled with fresh ingredients and recipe cards for this menu.

  • Game Day Food: Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021, 6:30 p.m. (no ingredient kit for this class), free

Visit our market calendar for more details and to register.

 Beach in a Box with Artshine

Craving some sunshine this time of year? Introducing Beach in a Box - enjoy a creative getaway with Artshine and the Kitchener Market!

Beach in a Box is an activity kit that offers an online tutorial and everything you need to paint a tropical scene on canvas.

Each box contains an island music list, mocktail recipes, a beach ball, sand, floral lei and painting supplies.

Pre-registration is required. Boxes are available while supplies last. Each kit contains supplies for up to four participants.

  • Register on Active Kitchener to pick up your kit on Friday, Feb. 5 between 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
  • Pick up at the Kitchener Market
  • Cost: $10
  • Link to the online Artshine tutorial is included in the box
  • If you need to make alternate arrangements for your supply kit please email info@kitchenermarket.ca

 

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Staying connected

What kind of Tree IS That? Winter Tree ID Webinar

With most of the leaves buried under a layer of snow it can make identifying trees an interesting puzzle to unravel.

Join Reep Green Solutions and learn how to unlock the mysteries behind tree identification in the winter, and learn about some common trees and shrubs you may find in your own backyard!

Downtown Kitchener

Downtown Kitchener is home to a hearty variety of local shops that offer dozens of unique services. Many small businesses are delivering alternative ways to access goods such as take out, curb side pick up or delivery. Check out your guide to downtown Kitchener and shop local!

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