Whether you’re at work or going back to graduate school, autumn can be a very busy and hectic time, as the easy, breezy skin of summer’s lull is finally and fully stripped away. Add the holiday squeeze of Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year’s to that, and the months of November and December can begin to feel downright overwhelming for some of us.
While it may seem counter-intuitive, the continual press of obligations that accompany the holiday season can make getting away from it all a boon to your attitude and energy level. If you’re dreading the holiday rush, here are three reasons to spend the first weekend of December getting away from it all in Niagara.
1. Heritage Farmhouse Christmas
Held at the esteemed restaurant, Windows by Jamie Kennedy, the Heritage Farmhouse Christmas Dinner is an event that looks deep into the past in order to bring diners an experience of Christmas dinner similar to what would have been commonplace 100 years ago. Held on Friday, December 4, the evening begins with a cocktail reception that includes canapés and wine and the company of Chef Jamie Kennedy and Chef Jay Jackson. Following the cocktail hour, guests will move into the Windows dining room, which features one of the best views of the waterfalls in all of Niagara for a five-course meal your great-great grandmother would have been proud to serve. Each course is paired with wine from Colaneri Estate Winery. Tickets are $125 per person.
2. Christmas on Ice
Whether or not you’ve always been a fan of figure skating, the Fallsview Casino’s Christmas on Ice will give you ample opportunity to marvel at the beauty and grace of numerous national champion ice skaters. The holiday-themed program is perfect for families, couples, or friends looking for a delightful way to spend an evening where athletic prowess and sentiment combine. There are shows at 9 p.m. on December 4 and 5 and at 3 p.m. on December 5 and 6 so that almost any schedule can be accommodated.
3. Port Colborne’s Annual Lighted Santa Claus Parade
Unlike most parades, the Port Colborne Annual Lighted Santa Claus Parade takes place in the evening, which transforms the seemingly commonplace experience of attending a parade into a magical experience that’s perfect for the holiday season. Head to Port Colborne on December 5 by 5:30 p.m. to get a good spot, and bring along some hot cocoa or cider, as well as some non-perishable canned goods if you’d like — the Port Colborne Optimist Club will be collecting them along the parade route. The parade gets underway by 6:30 p.m., and after it’s over, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy Port Colborne’s charming downtown. Grab a bite of international and Asian-inspired fare at The Smokin’ Buddha after the parade, or, if you get to town early enough, grab a fresh fish lunch or afternoon snack at Minor Fisheries.
The Niagara region is bursting with good fun and easy relaxation all winter long. Get away from it all before it all overwhelms you by scheduling a relaxing holiday trip to Niagara for the first weekend in December.