Where Calgary - - EDITOR’S NOTE - RACHAEL FREY, Edi­tor

As a kid, there are few things more ex­cit­ing (and ex­cru­ci­at­ing) than the mount­ing an­tic­i­pa­tion for a ma­jor hol­i­day. Ev­ery­thing— food, mu­sic, decor, ac­tiv­i­ties, en­ter­tain­ment— is spe­cial­ized to bring a feel­ing of cheer and unique­ness to the sea­son. As the years go by and we faith­fully re­peat hol­i­day tra­di­tions, nos­tal­gia slowly winds it­self around all these spe­cial rit­u­als. The taste of a cookie or a few notes of a song gain the power to in­stantly trans­port you back in time. Some of Cal­gary’s most beloved fes­tive tra­di­tions come in the form of an­nual per­for­mances, such as Al­berta Bal­let’s clas­sic ren­di­tion of The Nutcracker or The­atre Cal­gary’s time-hon­oured ver­sion of A

Christ­mas Carol (page 12). Vet­eran ac­tor Stephen Hair will be play­ing the role of Ebenezer Scrooge for the 24th time this year, mean­ing there are some young Cal­gar­i­ans who have never seen Scrooge per­formed by an­other ac­tor. While re­ceiv­ing gifts is un­doubt­edly part of the sea­son’s ap­peal, noth­ing com­pares to the plea­sure of see­ing fam­ily and friends en­joy some­thing you picked out just for them. We’ve care­fully se­lected a va­ri­ety of gifts from lo­cal re­tail­ers that we think will bring big smiles to the faces of your loved ones (page 18). But some­times the per­fect present can’t be wrapped, so we also thought out­side the box to give you some sug­ges­tions on gift­ing thrills and last­ing mem­o­ries in­stead of ob­jects (page 24). Whether you’re look­ing to recre­ate old mem­o­ries or build new tra­di­tions, I hope you’ll find some­thing in these pages to in­spire you. Here’s to a joy­ful Novem­ber and De­cem­ber, and a peace­ful new year. See you in 2018!

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