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253 Days ‘til our festival of German Christmas December 7 to 10, 2017

Stories from Media

Christkindl Market transforms Kitchener, Ontario

Christkindl Market celebrates 20 years of recreating tastes, smells, sights, sounds and 700-year-old traditions of German Christmas Markets. December 1-4 downtown Kitchener transforms into a fanfare of food, shopping and entertainment for the whole family with 90 vendors, including huts outside Kitchener City Hall. 40,000 visitors enjoy 30 bands, choirs, dancers, puppet shows, trains, children's workshops, blacksmiths, live nativity and horse-drawn carriages. Awarded Top 100 Festivals in Ontario. Win a trip to Germany! Free admission.

2016 - Christkindl in the NEWS

Kitchener Post: Christkindl Market open for 20th anniversary season - By Bill Jackson, Kitchener Post - November 30, 2016 

uwimprint (Univerisity of Waterloo): Christmas comes early to the market By Leanna Walsh - November 8, 2016

ResortsAndLodges.com: Kitchener Christkindl Market: A Christmas Shopping Event with German Flair,  By Thomas Schultz posted November 16, 2016 

Kitchener Record & Hamilton Spectator - Twelve days of Christmas in Waterloo region: One castle, two trains, three plays and several festivals of lights brighten the night By Anne Bokma, posted November 19, 2016

Follow Let's Discover ON: A travel blog that is focused exclusively on Ontario destinations & events Twitter: @letsdiscoverON & Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LetsDiscoverON/

Find us on Chill Wall - http://bit.ly/2fY69fl

Canadian Affairs: The Best Christmas Markets in Canada - November 22, 2016 - http://www.canadianaffair.com/blog/best-christmas-markets-canada/

Liliane Fawzy Blog - December 2016 - (Great photos!)  mytorontomyworld.com/christkindl-market-and-wonders-of-winter/

2016 - Press Releases - for immediate release

News Release - Exhibition: November 1-30th, Reception: November 3rd, 2016 

News Release - Candlelight Procession & Opening Ceremonies: December 1st, 2016 

News Release - Ways to experience Christkindl Market 

HOURS: 

Thursday, December 1, 2016    10 am – 9 pm (Official Opening, 6 pm)
Friday, December 2, 2016    10 am – 9 pm
Saturday, December 3, 2016       9 am – 9 pm
Sunday, December 4, 2016

10 am – 4 pm (Official Closing and Draw, 4 pm)

2015

Grand Magazine: November 1, 2015 - Behind the scene of Kitchener's Christkindl - Merry Christkindl

"When Tony Bergmeier was a young lad growing up in Munich, Germany, one of his fondest childhood memories was celebrating Christmas in the city square with his family and friends.

It was an Old World wonderland, with everything from dazzling live entertainment to mouth-watering seasonal treats.

In 1996, the City of Kitchener was looking for ways to enliven a struggling downtown core. Bergmeier approached council with a Canadian vision of his idyllic childhood Christmas. And as Kitchener, formerly Berlin, possessed a strong German heritage, collaborations began for the creation of a new city centre festival."

Videos & Newspaper Articles

2014

chatelaine magazine cover

Chatelaine Magazine: November 26, 2014 - 6 Christmas markets across Canada to visit

"The City of Kitchener, about 1 hour outside of Toronto, is known for its deep roots in German tradition. In fact, the city was called the "Town/City of Berlin" up until 1918. Home to the largest Oktoberfest celebration outside of Germany, the streets of Kitchener also comes alive in December for its 4-day Christkindl Market – Canada's original Festival of German Christmas. The event recreates the sights, sounds, smells and spirit of Christmas festivals found across Germany – think Belgium waffles, German sausages and schnitzel..."

Videos & Newspaper Articles

2012-2013

Christkindl Market visitors dig deep and raise over $5,500 for Children's Wish

"...On behalf of Children's Wish, I am absolutely thrilled to let you know that this years' Christkindl Market raised the highest donations to date in the history of the event. How proud you all must be to learn that $5,512. was raised through the "Trip to Germany" draw. That is so amazing and I sincerely hope that you are as excited about that total as the Children's Wish Foundation of Canada is. Congratulations to you all for a job well done and for helping us to grant a very special wish to a very brave and deserving child. Wishing you all the best of the Holiday Season and hopefully knowing that you have helped a child's wish become a reality will make it even brighter."  - Anne Boehm, The Children's Wish Foundation, Kitchener

Videos & Articles

Excellent community spirit and great event for family. Loved the food, gluhwein, apple fritters, sauerkraut..
Love it-part of my yearly Christmas tradition!
"I will be there again on the Saturday to enjoy my childhood memories all over again, not to forget the food and smells of this special time."
Love it. Traditional December event we all look forward to at our house. Thanks!
If you can't be at a Christmas Market in Germany, the Christkindl Market in Oktoberfest City (Kitchener, Ontario), is the closest it can get. They even have real, hot mulled wine, a staple at every German Weihnachtsmarkt. For us, visiting the market in Kitchener was a few hours back home away from home. Very nice!
I just want to thank the team that sets up the Christmas Tree and oversees Christkindl. What a wonderful way to spend a lunch hour! I go every year on Thursday and Friday. I LOVE it! It just lifts the spirits and is so "magical"! Thank you for such a wonderful experience, every year!
...we'd like to see all of the vendors. It's a wonderful event and my Christmas spirit doesn't begin until I attend your festival.
Nice! I just moved back from living in Europe for 9 years, this was so nice!
Can you please do a candlelight precession on Friday and Saturday nights too?
It brings back memories of Germany during the Christmas season!
Ich Liebe Christkindl Markt
Santa does not have to be in a red suit The Christmas spirit is alive and well in Kitchener: My four-year-old daughter; two-year-old son, my Mom and I had gone to Christkindl on Dec 7. My son was in total rapture as he looked upon a display of moving toys. To the right of me was a lady watching my son's gazing and dreamy state. The lady took a box with the toy inside and shoved it under my arm; my reaction was no, no, no. I looked at this kind-hearted lady and she said she wanted to buy it for the little guy, and that she was going to be thinking about him on Christmas morning as he unwraps his gift from her. I want her to know Santa does not have to be in a red suit with bells on and a beard. He could also be a she, a kind and special lady.
As we entered the building, we saw so many beautiful Angels, and so many beautiful ornaments, so unique to this event that you couldn't buy them anywhere else. What a memory. My daughter and I attend this event each and every year. It's like our own tradition, just for the 2 of us. It's a night out together to bond, celebrate the holidays and of course to look for that very special Christmas ornament for this year.
Think Oktoberfest, except that the beer is replaced with Christmas cheer.
Kindling the Christmas Spirit -I remember the first year of the Market about 10 years ago. Snow falling gently, beautiful German music playing outside, high quality Christmas goods for purchase from friendly vendors, hot-mulled cider, the nativity scene, the skaters - what atmosphere!!! The magic has hooked me ever since. So much different from the mall! Thanks for kindling the Christmas spirit.
Herrliche Tradition aus Deutschland - Ich war nur mal zu einem Christkindl Markt. Das war circa 1975 in Pforzheim im Schwarzen Wald. Ich kann mich noch nach all diesen Jahren an die wunderbaren Lichter und Aromas, so wie all die schoene Musik und die Weihnachts Stimmung, ganz gut erinnern, als wenn es gestern war.
Ich war nur mal zu einem Christkindl Markt. Das war circa 1975 in Pforzheim im Schwarzen Wald. Ich kann mich noch nach all diesen Jahren an die wunderbaren Lichter und Aromas, so wie all die schoene Musik und die Weihnachts Stimmung, ganz gut erinnern, als wenn es gestern war. Vielen Dank dass Sie diese herrliche Tradition aus Deutschland herueber gebracht haben. Ich wuenschte wir koennten jaehrlich kommen um den Christkindl Markt zu besuchen.
Love the market, reminds me of my time living in Germany
Vielen Dank dass Sie diese herrliche Tradition aus Deutschland herueber gebracht haben. Ich wuenschte wir koennten jaehrlich kommen um den Christkindl Markt zu besuchen.
It is a magical experience for me as a vendor and all the visitors that attend. Everybody is happy and excited and enjoying all the events, food, atmosphere, entertainment, and the unique vendors wares. Thanks to those that had the vision to start Christkindl 20 years ago, and all that played a role over the years to making Christkindl a success.
We love it! It gets us in the Christmas spirit!
It was amazing what wonders it did for us! From the lights and the music and the smells and watching everyone smiling and laughing...it instantly lifted our spirits and helped us keep them there through the whole holiday. Now we can't wait year to year for the first ads and we rush to mark it on the calendars. We always go the Friday night, no kids or friends, just us - to sit and take it all in. You don't know what you are missing until you have been there!" - Letter from
As always, our family enjoyed the Christkindl Market so very much! Thank you for nurturing this tradition in Kitchener - we hope it keeps going for many, many years... Thank you once again for a wonderful Christmas experience our family has made part of our yearly tradition!
I will be there again to enjoy my childhood memories all over again, not to forget the food and smells of this special time.
Thank you, for bringing to our community the Christkindl Market, an event that has rekindled in the hearts of so many, the wonder and joy, the excitement and awe of those memorable Christkindl Markets in Germany so many years ago. Thanks for your vision, your dream and your spirit. You make it possible for people of another age, a new generation, and varied cultures to enjoy the magic. Our hearts quicken at the sound of the fanfare at the opening ceremony and our eyes grow misty to the sweet sound of the music and song that fills the winter air...
Nice to preserve our cultural heritage. We really enjoyed the train room
Wonderful! My husband is German- was like home for him! Visiting is becoming a yearly tradition! Thanks!
I'm now feeling the Christmas Spirit. Thank you!
As the rest of the world gallops forward, there is a tradition that keeps people in Waterloo Region firmly rooted in the past, at least during Christmas. The annual four-day Christkindl Market opens Thursday in front of Kitchener City Hall, recreating a Bavarian tradition first officially recorded in 1310. The original market, called Nikolausdult, was designed as a temporary affair constructed from wood and canvas and erected in front of a church. Visitors from far and wide would arrive to both sell and purchase items, some from other countries, giving the market an international flavour. Then in a few days, it would all disappear. "It's about tradition," she said. "That's what people are looking for." The market features vendors, selling all manner of items: German-made toys, handcrafted jewelry, art glass items, gift baskets, beeswax candles, gifts, chocolate and marzipan, original art, music, leather, hand-painted wearable art, tree decorations, music boxes and everyone's favourite, apple fritters. Christkindl Market takes over much of city hall, both inside and out, with gift vendors indoors and food outdoors on Civic Square, where they will pander to anyone with a hankering for Germanic food, including schnitzel, marinated herring and Schinken on a bun as well as the regular crowd pleasers such as sausage, potato pancakes, stollen and waffles. This is no time to go on a diet. And for those needing a rest, the 10th floor has been turned into a place to sit, relax and eat your goodies.
Christmas spirit ... we'd like to see all of the vendors. It's a wonderful event and my Christmas spirit doesn't begin until I attend your festival
Love the Market! It's my first time here and it's been awesome! Thank you!
It is awesome! This reminds me of all of the traditional Christmas markets I saw in Germany. I loved the markets in Germany and miss them a great deal, how nice it is to relive a bit of the atmosphere here in Kitchener.
We absolutely love it! It's been a family tradition to go to the German Christmas market at the Toronto International Centre since I was a small child back in the 70's and 80's. Now I have children of my own and we have been coming to the Kitchener Christkindl Market for the past 10 years. We stay at a nearby bed and breakfast go to the farmers market and then the Chirstkindl. It's a beautiful weekend that we look forward to all year long. I love the whole German feel. My mother was German from Darmstadt. We grew up speaking German with all the German customs and festivities. Christmas and Nikolaus Tag were our favourites. Your Christkindl still captures that traditional German feel with the products, food, childrens/adult choir and German people. The smell of the the roasted beer nuts, bratwurst, goulash soup, saurkraut, potato pancakes and blacksmith fire in the crisp, cold winter air creates a feeling in me that I cannot explain. It really makes me and my family feel wonderful and happy. With all the craziness in today's world, it's so good to know we can disappear for a weekend in the warmth and nostalgia of the Christkindl.
Thank you all for making this German Christmas festival a reality so that we can enjoy the Christmas season and make many special memories for ourselves and more importantly for our children. To another 100 years of Christkindl Market, Kitchener! Frohe Weihnachten
Every year the City Hall in Kitchener transforms into a German style Christmas Market complete with food, carollers, ice skating and lots more. This year marked the 20th anniversary of the event and it did not disappoint. City Hall was decked out with vendors, food, Christmas decorations and entertainment to convince even the meanest Grinch that this truly is the best time of the year. WONDERS OF WINTER
My mom has taken my brother and I to the Christkindl Market ever since it first opened. We felt surrounded by love and happiness and enjoyed being around the German community - especially because we could not be with our family in Germany at Christmas. I still remember and still feel the warm feelings I first felt when I visit the Christkindl Market. I always make sure I attend each year with my Mom and now take my daughter along as well. I hope she too will be able to attend for years to come and in the future, bring her children as well.
Beautiful. Love the nativity and ornaments. Everything ist wunderbar
Wonderful Tradition!
"Homesick" for the sights, smells and sounds of Germany. I had been living in a small town in the Black Forest region while I was teaching on the Canadian Forces Base in Lahr. On my return to Stratford, I found the Kitchener Christkindl Market. Somehow, I did not feel quite as "homesick" for the sights, smells and sounds of Germany! It is a wonderful experience, one I look forward to every year.
It is well organized
Love your market!!
The Christmas spirit is alive and well in Kitchener
The joy is yours!
Just like Germany! Love the organ grinder!
Love this festival - begins Christmas!
Our family has been coming to the Christkindl Market in Kitchener for five years now. We absolutely love it there. The sights, sounds and smells really put us in the Christmas spirit. This has become a very cherished part of our Christmas traditions. Three generations of our family take part in it. What a special time is had by all. Thanks for the memories...already looking forward to next year.
I took my daughter for the first time 5 years ago and what a special event this was for both of us. We visited the manger live nativity scene, it was beautiful. We listened to the Christmas music, I can't believe how just humming a little Christmas song can put you in such good spirits with yourself and others. Christmas is the one time of the year that people actually look at others and smile, wishing them the very best. It's a shame we can't be like this throughout the year.
My husband's family is German and up until we visited the Christkindl Market a few years ago I only had stories and some samplings of the different Christmas foods from Germany from his family. Until we visited your wonderful market I never really understood the fascination my husband has always had for German Christmas. Since that first visit my husband starts planning our next visit in October! He wouldn't miss it for the world and I have come to appreciate his heritage even more through experiencing this bit of Germany in Canada! Every year we bring our teenagers and invite our friends. Thank you for all your hard work - Christmas isn't Christmas for us now without the Christkindl Market!
Great Job - Christkindl Market! Saves us a trip to Germany!
Wonderful - An annual event for myself!
My two-year-old son, was in total rapture as he looked upon a display of moving toys. A lady was watching my son's dreamy state. This kind-hearted lady said she wanted to buy it for my little guy, and that she was going to be thinking about him on Christmas morning as he unwraps his gift from her. I want her to know Santa does not have to be in a red suit with bells on and a beard. He could also be a she, a kind and special lady.
Christmas spirit ...we like to see all of the vendors. It's a wonderful event and my Christmas spirit doesn't begin until I attend your festival.

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