What’s open in Toronto on Christmas Day 2017

Here’s what to do on December 25


While most restaurants, art galleries, museums, theatres, shops and venues are closed on Christmas Day, there’s still a handful of events happening around the city on December 25. Whether you don’t celebrate Christmas or you need a break from your extended family, here are nine things to do on Christmas Day.

See a movie at Cineplex

For lots of families, seeing a movie on Christmas Day is as much of a tradition as turkey dinner. Cineplex theatres across the city are open, so go see Oscar favourites Molly’s Game and Downsizing, both of which open on Christmas Day. If you want to get into the holiday spirit, go see the 10 pm screening of Die Hard at Yonge & Dundas. (If Bruce Willis doesn’t scream Christmas for you, the Y&D is also playing It’s a Wonderful Life). See movie listings for details.

Go to the aquarium

On Christmas Day, expect fewer crowds at the Ripley’s Aquarium. This means you won’t have to curse middle schoolers on field trips roughhousing in the “Dangerous Lagoon” (aka the underwater tunnel) and you’ll be able to take as many artsy photos in front of the jellyfish exhibit as your heart desires. Admission from $12. See website for details.

Watch the world’s best commercials at Hot Docs Cinema

At the Ted Rogers Hot Docs Cinema, watch the crème de la crème of commercials from the Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity. These ads range from the hilarious and quirky to the sentimental. Then stick around for a screening of Ramen Heads, an in-depth look into the noodle soup and top ramen chef, Osamu Tomita.

Christmas Flower Show at the Allan Gardens Conservatory

Until January 7, Allan Gardens gets transformed into a tropical Christmas paradise. The show features more than 30 varieties of poinsettia on top of thousands of over flowering blooms. Admission is free. See website for details.

Disney on Ice at the Rogers Centre

You know the drill here: Marvel as Elsa, Belle, Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck, Ariel and the rest of the gang as they skate to Disney classic songs. See website for details.

Go skating at Nathan Phillips Square

Whether you’re inspired by I, Tonya or Disney On Ice, go skating at Nathan Phillips Square. If you don’t have your own blades, you can still rent them at the rink on Christmas Day. See website for details.

Eat and shop at the Pacific Mall

On Christmas Day, make the trek to Markham and go shopping at Pacific Mall, the largest Chinese mall in North America. When you need to refuel, feast on hot pot at Emperor Hot Pot. 11 am to 8 pm. See website for details.

Festivus dinner at The Drake Hotel

Sure, Festivus actually takes places on December 23, but we’ll forgive the Drake because their annual event celebrating the secular Seinfeld holiday is always so delicious. This year’s feast includes all the fixings: roasted turkey and cider glazed ham, stuffing, squash with pecans, shaved Brussels sprouts, mashed potatoes, all topped with cranberry sauce and gravy. Afterwards, make Frank Constanza proud and air your grievances to all your loved ones. $35. See website for details.

Dance at Swan Dive

After you’re properly stuffed with turkey and mashed potatoes, go dancing at the Dundas West bar, Swan Dive. On Christmas night, they’re playing rock, post punk, psych music. They’ve officially dubbed the night “Festivus for the Rest of Us” and are currently trying to find an aluminum pole, i.e. the symbol of Festivus. Free. 10 pm. See listing for details.

samanthae@nowtoronto.com | @SamEdwardsTO

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