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The Alberta Legislature

Wintertime at the Alberta Legislature

Submitted by: the Legislative Assembly of Alberta

If you've ever wondered what happened to the old-fashioned spirit of the holiday season, look no further as it is alive and well here at the Alberta Legislature, where there will be sights and sounds aplenty during Celebrate the Season, December 5 to 23.

A tradition now in its 28th year, Celebrate the Season begins with the majestic Legislature Building dressed in exquisite holiday decor and its sprawling landscape transformed into a winter wonderland in the heart of downtown Edmonton.

On December 5 the Alberta Legislature will take part in a country-wide kickoff, whereby all capital cities, led by Ottawa, will hit the switch and simultaneously turn on all the lights at the respective Legislatures and the Parliament Building grounds.

Hunker down and warm your toes while attending a guided tour of one of Alberta’s most cherished landmarks. Enjoy a free cup of hot cocoa with the kids and enjoy the spectacular concerts held daily at 12 noon, 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. With performers varying in ages and styles, these groups will be sure to please with their renditions of everyone’s favourite holiday classics performed within the incomparable acoustics of the magnificent Alberta Legislature rotunda. Over 60 school and community choirs, some from as far away as Magrath, Alberta, will be the main events over the three-week festival.

In the spirit of supporting local talent, select works from Alberta-based authors, artists and artisans are featured for purchase at the Alberta Legislative Assembly Gift Shop. Nestled in the pedway mall north of the Legislature Building, the gift shop reflects the diversity and range of artistry we have in Alberta. Open to the public year round, the gift shop also offers extended hours during Celebrate the Season.

There are also plenty of options for the outdoor enthusiast who prefer to revel in Alberta’s crisp and cold winters. Novice and seasoned skaters alike can practice their glides and spins at the well-lit rink on the south grounds, which is open daily weather permitting. An evening stroll becomes far from ordinary as you walk among more than 300 trees brightened by over 127,000 festive LED lights. Watch the children’s eyes widen as they gaze 53 feet (16 metres) up in the air at the centrepiece tree, located by the reflecting pool on the north grounds. The white spruce, hand-picked from a forest in the Hinton area, weighs over 2,500 pounds and will be lit with over 5,000 multi-coloured LED bulbs.

The Alberta Legislature is easily accessible by all modes of transportation. Parking is permitted along 107thStreet, and a limited number of spots are available in the 107th Street visitor lot. The Grandin and Corona LRT stations are also nearby as is the Government Centre transit centre.

If you are planning your visit, please be sure to check the choir listings at www.assembly.ab.ca as the schedule is always subject to change. Additional information may also be posted on our Facebook page (Legislative Assembly of Alberta) and Twitter (@legassemblyofab).

The Alberta Legislature is an enjoyable and meaningful place for families to visit throughout the year, but during the holidays it becomes an escape from the frenzy of the season. We are open for you to discover and we hope to see you soon.

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