The Shipyards Christmas Festival is a community event featuring live music and an artisan market at North Vancouver’s Shipbuilders’ Square in December.
The same as in previous years, in 2019 the event takes place in the late afternoon and evening of the Saturday of the first weekend in December, with some highlights of the event (e.g., the artisan market) continuing on the Sunday.
Dates for the event in 2019 are November 30th and December 1st.
Christmas Festival at the Shipyards
Communities all across the Lower Mainland hold winter holiday celebrations where they light their city’s giant Christmas trees, offer family-friendly activities and enjoy live entertainment. The Shipyards Christmas Festival is the City of North Vancouver’s official Christmas event and it’s free!
The Shipyards Christmas Festival takes place in and around Shipbuilders’ Square which is located at the bottom of Lonsdale Avenue in North Vancouver just a short walk from Lonsdale Quay and the SeaBus Terminal. The Square’s address is 15 Wallace Mews and it’s just behind the Tap and Barrel restaurant and Pinnacle Hotel.
In addition to outdoor entertainment and activities, at the event there is also an Artisan Market in the Pipe Shop which is located at 115 Victory Ship Way right at Shipbuilders’ Square.
Festivals Date and Schedule
The Shipyards Christmas Festival takes place on Saturday, November 30th in 2019.
Typically, a number of activities take place throughout the evening, while some occur at specific times. The festival itself goes from around 4:00 until 7:00 pm, but the Artisan Market usually runs from 3:00 until 9:00 or so in the Pipe shop. The following day (so on Sunday December 1st in 2019), the market usually continues from around 10:00 am until 5:00 pm. (Note: 2019 times and other details are to be confirmed.)
In a typical year North Vancouver’s Mayor lights the Christmas tree at 4:00 pm on the Saturday and photo opportunities with Santa run from 4:00 until 7:00 pm.
Other activities in recent years have included pony rides, ornament and lantern-making craft opportunities, gingerbread decorating and face painting for kids. Boats with Christmas lights from the Burrard Yacht Club are also often scheduled to sail past the pier.
At the event free hot chocolate, coffee and tea are available for everyone, as are kettle corn and cotton candy (for the first 500 people).
Festival Costs & Activities
The Shipyards Christmas Festival is a free event, although donations benefiting local charities are welcome. Most of the activities at the festival are free too.
A couple of years ago there was a 65-foot Ferris wheel at the event, but not in 2018.
Winter Artisan Market
The Winter Artisan Market takes place indoors at the Pipe Shop on Saturday December 1st, from around 3:00 until 9:00 pm. At the market there are dozens of local artisan vendors selling everything from handmade soaps to homemade sauces to Christmas cards and other products.
The market also take places again on the Sunday of the same weekend too.
In addition to the Artisan Market and various child-friendly activities, at North Vancouver’s Shipyards Christmas Festival there is also live entertainment on the outdoor stage. Performing at the event last year were a magician, the Windsor Senior Chamber Choir and the Seymour Dance School.
For further details about the Shipyards Christmas Festival see the City of North Vancouver‘s website.
For ideas on other things to do over the winter holiday season, check out any of the following:
- Best Christmas Activities
- Vancouver’s December Calendar of Events
- Lower Mainland Ski Hills
- Vancouver Winter Activities