Eaton's Fairytale Vignettes at the Manitoba Children's Museum (photo: Curtis Shonoski)

Things to Do in Manitoba: Winter 2016

By AMA Staff

Memorable music, Canada’s best curlers and holiday festivities. Just some of the fun happening this winter in Manitoba. Save on flights, hotels and car rentals in Canada and beyond by booking with AMA Travel.

More than 300 small-scale pieces of Winnipeg heritage are once again on whimsical display at The Children’s Museum. Delighting young viewers and stirring fond memories in the young-at-heart, the lovingly restored Eaton’s Fairytale Vignettes depict 15 well-known fables and nursery rhymes, including Cinderella, Humpty Dumpty and Little Red Riding Hood, with detailed figurines, miniature furniture and more. Though their original location—the Eaton’s department store on Portage Avenue—is no more, these unique storybook dioramas remain a holiday-season favourite for many Manitobans. Nov. 12-Jan. 8

The country’s biggest rock stars shoot for the button at Brandon’s Westman Communications Group Place, host of this year’s Home Hardware Canada Cup of Curling. The high-stakes bonspiel boasts a who’s who of top curlers, including Manitoba rinks led by Mike McEwen and Reid Carruthers on the men’s side, and women’s foursomes skipped by Kerri Einarson and 2014 Olympic gold medallist Jennifer Jones. To the victors? Automatic entry in the upcoming Roar of the Rings in Ottawa, and a chance to represent the nation at the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang. Nov. 30-Dec. 4

Things to do throughout Alberta during winter 2016

Though originally written as a parable about poverty and social injustice in Victorian England, Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol endures today. It inspires and reminds us of the power of generosity and compassion, and life’s simple pleasures like a warm hearth or a family meal. The Fort la Reine Museum captures this spirit during its Dickens Christmas Celebration, which decks the heritage village in old-time holiday cheer. Costumed story-tellers, sleigh rides, treats and more add to the seasonal delight. Dec. 3

Musical motifs by famed film composer John Williams move from the cinema to the concert hall courtesy of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Among the ensemble’s seasonal slate of “pops” performances is a live rendition of Williams’ score for E.T.—while the Spielberg classic screens above the stage. Later, the composer’s familiar cues from Star Wars: The Force Awakens comprise a portion of the WSO’s Soundtracks Live program, which also includes selections from a number of other memorable motion pictures. E.T. Dec. 11, Soundtracks Live Jan. 20-22; CAA members save 10% on regular-price individual tickets

Things to do in Manitoba love lies bleeding royal winnipeg ballet
The Royal Winnipeg Ballet presents Love Lies Bleeding (photo: J.J. Thompson)

When four pioneers of American music walk into a recording studio, the results are bound to be memorable. Sixty years after Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash held an impromptu jam session at Memphis’s Sun Studios, Manitobans can thrill to the legends’ songs—and stories—at performances of Million Dollar Quartet. Presented by the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, the rock ‘n’ roll revue features tunes ranging from “Great Balls of Fire” to “Hound Dog” to “Walk the Line.” Jan. 3-28

This winter, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet goes pop with its presentation of Love Lies Bleeding, a glitzy dance work featuring tunes from Sir Elton John and Bernie Taupin. Created by the Alberta Ballet and its artistic director, Jean Grand-Maître, the mix of ballet, jazz and hip-hop steps extravagantly through the story of a rock star who encounters all manner of trials and temptations in his search not only for stardom, but compassion, acceptance and love. Mar. 1-5; CAA members save 15% on select seats

One of Winnipeg’s most popular gathering spaces is now more welcoming than ever. A $2.5-million renovation to The Forks Market—the structure’s largest change since its opening in 1989—has added a variety of modern touches to the venue’s central food hall. Beneath chic new chandeliers, an 80-seat harvest table lends a communal vibe as guests sample and savour the wares of new and longtime-favourite vendors. One popular stop is The Common, which features a professionally curated selection of craft brews and international wines.