VICTORIA, BC—Get out of the mall and into the true spirit of the season with these high-touch/low-stress December events at the Royal BC Museum:
- Kick off the season on Dec. 1 with the 13th annual Carol-Along with the Carillon on the Royal BC Museum plaza from 4:30-5:15 pm. It’s a one-of-a-kind carolling party led by Provincial Carillonneur Rosemary Laing and the Newcombe Choir. Hot chocolate and cookies provided! Free.
- Starting Dec. 6, Father Christmas returns to Old Town to hear the holiday wishes of the young—and young-at-heart. He’ll be on his throne every Friday, Saturday and Sunday until Dec. 22, from 11 am to 3 pm. Included with admission or membership; photos by donation: $5 suggested. Keep the old-timey vibe going with a visit to Helmcken House—the oldest house in British Columba still on its original site—for a living history tribute to the Christmas celebrations of a bygone century. Open noon-4 pm until Jan. 5; included with museum admission or membership, or by donation.
- It’s a mix-and-mingle without a hint of Kris Kringle at the next Museum Happy Hour! Come to the Natural History Gallery on Dec. 12 from 5:30-7 pm for a Festive Non-Holiday Party complete with drinks and light refreshments—and not a Christmas tree in sight! ($10 per person; food and drinks available for purchase.) Let the kids make merry too—our Parallel Play Childminding is available for this event (5-7 pm; $15 per child).
- Make time for Maya: The Great Jaguar Rises! The acclaimed feature exhibition closes Dec. 31 and makes a perfect holiday outing for visitors of all ages. Don’t miss this multi-sensory feature exhibition which has earned rave reviews for its rarely seen artifacts and family-friendly interactives. (Tip: come for the exhibition and stay for the gift shop, featuring beautiful sustainably sourced, fairly traded handcrafts from Guatemala!) Included with admission or membership.
- Chill Out with the family during Wonder Sundays on Dec 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 from 1-3 pm in the new Learning Centre. Explore the art and science of snow and cold through fun interactives: discover the peculiarities of penguin feet, the benefits of blubber, and the beauty of the seven basic snowflake shapes. Included with admission or membership.
- Baby, it’s cold outside! Warm up with a hot chocolate from Sequoia Coastal Coffee and get to know “Buster”: an entirely new species of dinosaur—Ferrisaurus sustutensis—and the first dinosaur species unique to BC. He, and the work of paleontology curator Dr. Victoria Arbour, are the focus of the Helijet-sponsored Pocket Gallery (in Clifford Carl Hall) until Feb. 26, 2020. Buster is one of the most complete skeletons ever unearthed here in BC. Free.
- Bond with a book this holiday season—or give one as a gift! Check out the fascinating history titles at rbcm.ca/books or ask your local bookseller for books published by the Royal BC Museum.
- Celebrate the arrival of 2020 like Maya royalty! Join us in the rainforest setting of Maya: The Great Jaguar Rises at a jungle party for the ages. Fun reigns supreme at Early Shift, our annual New Year’s celebration with music, activities and games suitable for the whole family. December 31, 6:00–8:30 pm; $24 per adult, $16 per youth.