The holidays may be over, but there’s still plenty to do and see in Canada’s “Winter City.” If you’re looking for fun ways to beat the winter blues in 2023, here are a few festivals to look forward to:
1. Winter City Weekends – Swing n’ Skate & Ice Grooves
When: Every weekend in January
Where: City Hall, Downtown Edmonton
Winter City Weekends: Get your groove on at City Hall! For the rest of January, visitors can throw on their skates and dance the weekend away every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Ice Grooves takes place Friday and Saturday evenings from 6pm – 9pm, featuring some of Edmonton’s best local DJs. Swing n’ Skate takes place every Sunday from 1pm – 4pm in the City Room and offers live music to the tune of swing, salsa, big band, etc.
2. Snow Way Out
When: Now – January 29th
Where: ICE District – Fan Park, 10128 104 Ave, Edmonton
The first of its kind, Snow Way Out is an a-maze-ing winter experience featuring a massive Oilers-themed maze as well as photo ops, an ice slide, fire pits, winter games and more. Located right next to Rogers Place, the venue also has a skating rink and plenty of warm food and beverages to enjoy. PS. Go, Oil!
3. Deep Freeze: A Byzantine Winter Festival
When: January 21st & 22nd, 2023
Where: 90–95 ST & 118th Ave, Edmonton
The Deep Freeze Festival proudly celebrates French Canadian, Ukrainian, Indigenous, Franco-African, Latin American and Asian cultures through art, music, food and fun. This year’s event includes an enchanted forest (complete with hand-sculpted mystical creatures, woodland animals and other surprises), snowshoeing, dance troupes, street hockey, cultural teachings, and so much more.
4. Ice on Whyte: Chiseled
When: January 24th – 26th, 2023
Where: Ice District Plaza, 10360 102 St, Edmonton
Edmonton’s International Ice Carving Competition returns for another year! Founded in 2016, the Ice on Whyte Festival looks to advance public appreciation for ice carving through live demonstrations, performances and teaching. After the Chiseled competition at ICE District Plaza, carving demonstrations, classes and ice sculpture gardens will be held in Old Strathcona’s McIntyre Park.
When: January 25th – 29th, 2023
Where: Various Venues, Downtown Edmonton
Live music, comedy, drag, outdoor events, craft beer and community combine to create an inclusive festival experience for Edmontonians of every genre, gender and culture. A multi-venue arts and music festival, Winterruption will feature local and international acts and free outdoor activities. You can also check out Winterruption’s 2023 Spotify Playlist in advance.
6. Flying Canoë Volant
When: February 1st – 4th, 2023
Where: Mill Creek Ravine, 8327 95A St / French Quarter, Edmonton
Take a ride in a flying canoe via Francophone-led music, legends, light and dance! The Flying Canoë Volant is a cultural celebration inspired by French Canadian, Metis and First Nations traditions. Mill Creek Ravine and the French Quarter provide a beautiful backdrop for this outdoor event which will also include illuminated trails, hot food, craft beer, activity tents, snow tubing and more.
7. Canadian Birkebeiner Ski Festival
When: February 10th – 27th, 2023
Where: Various Venues
If you love cross-country skiing, this is for you! Canada’s premier classic-style cross-country ski celebration, the Canadian Birkie Ski Festival, hosts several recreational and competitive events at various snowy and scenic locations around the capital region - including the Ukrainian Village, Waskehegan and Hawrelak Park. Events vary according to age and skill level, be sure to check registration rules in advance.
8. International Festival of Winter Cinema
When: February 10th - 19th, 2023
Where: Hawrelak Park, Edmonton
The best winter films from around the globe come to Edmonton. The International Festival of Winter Cinema aims to be the premier international competitive film event featuring winter-themed cinema and audiovisual art. True to its theme, all screenings are FREE and take place on a giant outdoor Snow Screen. You can check out the upcoming film schedule here.
9. SnoMo Days
When: February 18th -20th, 2023
Where: Alberta Beach, AB
SnoMo Days has provided excitement, adventure and entertainment to Edmonton and area families for over 43 years. While this weekend event is geared towards Albertan ATV lovers (feat. snowmobile rallies, parades, drag races, etc.), the event is also highlighted by various activities, including snow sculptures, skating, snow ball, monster trucks, broom ball, hay rides, children’s events, food vendors, and much more.
10. Edmonton Craft Beer Festival
When: March 10th – 11th, 2023
Where: Edmonton Expo Centre, Edmonton
Whether you love a good lager or prefer a palatable porter, the Edmonton Craft Beer Festival has a brew for you. The festival will feature countless breweries and distilleries from across Western Canada, including Edmonton’s own Alley Kat, Blind Enthusiasm, Odd Company, Endeavour, Situation, and Town Square, to name a few. Check out: Beverage Vendors for more information.
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Photo credits: shutterstock.comPosted by Terry Paranych on