Christmas is a lot different then when I was a kid. Today parents can do all their shopping from the comfort of their own home and the kids’ wish lists seem to be getting longer and more expensive every year. Have you ever wondered what Christmas was like at the turn of the century? How did families celebrate the season in the 1920’s? If you are wondering what to do in Toronto that will teach your children about history in a hands on way, visit a city of Toronto museum. The City of Toronto museums are filled with the holiday spirit all November and December long. We’ve gathered up a list of all the incredible (and often times free) programs taking place this year.
What to do in Toronto: Christmas at City Museums
Christmas Cookie Decorating at Montgomery’s Inn (November 22 or 23) Learn how to decorate festive cookies during a hands-on workshop. Each guest leaves the workshop with a half dozen decorated goodies and the recipes. Pre-registration required.
Christmas at Colborne Lodge (November 22 – Jan 4) Gather round the fireplace at Colborne Lodge. The entire family will enjoy the sights and smells of a Victorian Christmas. Raise a glass and toast the season with a glass of hot mulled cider by the wood stove and nibble on special holiday treats.
Christmas by the Hearth (December 21) Colborne Lodge will also play host to a children’s gingerbread cookie decorating day. Pre-registration required.
Frost Fair at Fort York (December 6 & 7) Travel back in time to the early 19th century, to a local Christmas Market. Stroll through the historic buildings of Fort York where merchants will be selling their heritage inspired wares and reproductions. Try your hand at one of the children’s recruiting and drill workshops, play period toys and games, watch military demonstrations, and print your own Frost Fair souvenir on the Mackenzie House proof press.
A Christmas Carol at Montgomery’s Inn (various dates) The Humber River Shakespeare Company present “A Christmas Carol”, the Dickens classic. This year they will be presenting a full stage production. Purchase tickets in advance.
Jane Austen’s Christmas Supper (December 19) Step into the world of Jane Austen. Sit at an elegant table by the fire and eat the foods she and her contemporaries knew, at historic Montgomery’s Inn. Pre-registration required.
Gingerbread Decorating at Gibson’s House (December 13) Sit by the fire and bake gingerbread cookies the traditional way.
Festive Weekends at Scarborough Museum (ongoing) Sample hot chocolate, baked holiday goodies and enjoy a tour. See how the first settlers in Scarborough lived.
A Roaring 20’s Christmas (various dates) Ever wondered what Christmas was like in the 1920s? Take in the holly wreaths, garlands of evergreens and mistletoe at Spadina House. In the kitchen guests will enjoy holiday treats made from original recipes and sip mulled cider warmed on the art deco gas range.
Christmas in the Valley at Todmorden Mills (various dates) Experience Christmas at Todmorden Mills, explore the holiday traditions of the 1890s and the 1940s. Enjoy historic recipes, create a take-home craft, and join us for a winter-themed outdoor tour of the Wildflower Preserve.
For all the dates, times and ticket information visit the City of Toronto’s museum events page.images from Toronto Historic Sites, City of Toronto