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News, December 1, 2021 - The Record - KITCHENER, By LIZ MONTEIRO, Record Reporter
The Christkindl Market is going ahead this year, moving outdoors with 25 wooden huts offering food, decor and arts and crafts on Gaukel Street.
“I love the fact that we are going back to our roots. The market belongs outside,” said Monica Reid, president of Christkindl Market, in an interview Tuesday. The Christkindl Market begins Thursday and ends Sunday near city hall between Charles and Joseph streets. The festival marks 25 years in downtown Kitchener.
Last year, the COVID-19 pandemic cancelled the four-day in-person market at Kitchener City Hall and Carl Zehr Square and forced it online at christkindl.ca. This year, the market will be held outside and continues online with about 60 vendors selling their goods virtually. The online sale will continue until the end of the month.
The annual Christmas market is a tradition dating back to 1310 in Munich, Germany. In Europe, most Christmas markets are held outdoors.
Reid said the pandemic compelled market organizers to promote the Christmas event in other ways. “COVID was such a crisis in people’s lives and sad for families and businesses. It forced us to do things differently,” Reid said.
“It has been a catalyst for really cool stuff we would never have done.” Some of the activities introduced last year and continuing this year include the 25-day online advent calendar which starts Wednesday. It features videos and concerts.
Subscription boxes — Christkindl Market in a Box — filled with traditional market items such as stollen and the popular glühwein mulled wine are also available. The boxes can be purchased online and will be available for curbside pickup in Victoria Park while the market is on.
The centre of the festival this year is on Gaukel Street where the wooden huts will be decorated and lit with Christmas lights.
“It will be magical,” Reid said. “It will come alive.”
Some of the festival’s longtime vendors, such as Stickley’s Specialty Bakery based in Peterborough, will have a hut and will also take orders online. The family has been at the market since it started downtown and offers fruity Christmas stollen, shortbread cookies, and Lebkuchen, a honey-sweetened German cookie similar to gingerbread.
In addition, Christmas trees will be available for purchase outside of Bobby O’Brien’s, along with live music. Concordia Club on Ottawa Street will also feature an indoor market with 17 vendors.
Singing of Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus by the Grand Philharmonic Choir will be projected on a video wall on Gaukel Street. There will also be self-guided walking tours and a wooden nutcracker gallery painted by local artists. Members of Canada’s national ice-stock team will be on Gaukel Street on the weekend. The sport, which is similar to curling and has been played in Germany since the 1600s, is slated to become an Olympic sport in 2026. About 20 downtown storefronts will be decorated for the Christmas market. Read the article.
News, November 13, 201 - CTV News: Check these off your Christmas List: Upcoming holiday events in Waterloo Region. Read the article.
TV Interview, October 2021 - CTV News - Oktoberfest Virtual Parade
KITCHENER, Watch the complete interview with CTV and Monica Reid, President, Christkindl Market. Watch the video above.
News, August 12, 2021 - The Record - Province gives $1.2 million for festivals and events in region
KITCHENER, By Terry Pender, Record Reporter - Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Mike Harris formally announced grants totalling $1.2 million Wednesday as part of a larger program that injects $50 million into 439 festivals and events across the province. “Investing in these events will both revitalize the tourism industry and support our local economy as it recovers from COVID-19,” said Harris during a news conference. Read the article.
The announcement was made Wednesday morning in Toronto by Lisa MacLeod, Ontario's Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries. “For more than a year, the pandemic has disproportionately impacted tourism and culture – two major industries that bring people together and our communities to life,” said MacLeod. “Increasing our annual support for festival and events will give the sector a much-needed boost as we continue to deal with the effects of COVID-19. Our government is supporting organizations that are finding new ways to safely engage and reconnect Ontarians with their local communities while creating local jobs.” Read the article.
News, June 30, 2021- DasJournal.ca (article is in German) - OTF Zuschuss für die Deutsch-Kanadische Gedachtnis Stiftung unterstützt den Christkindlmarkt in Kitchener.
Kitchener, ON – (Übersetzung von Regan Kat, UofW) 2019 gewährte die Ontario Trillium Foundation der Deutsch-Kanadischen Gedächtnis Stiftung einen Zuschuss in Höhe von 60.000 Dollar für die Anschaffung von acht neuen Weihnachtsmarkthütten und acht neuen begehbaren Bayerischen Essensständen zur Unterstützung ihrer weihnachtlichen Kulturinitiative, dem Christkindlmarkt... Read the June 30th article on pg 10 (PDF)
News, June 25, 2021- Press Release - OTF grant to the German-Canadian Remembrance Society supports Christkindl Market in Kitchener
Kitchener, ON - In 2019, Ontario Trillium Foundation awarded the German-Canadian Remembrance Society a Capital grant of $60,000 to purchase eight new huts and eight new accessible Bavarian food stands in support of its Christmas cultural initiative, the Christkindl Market. This new infrastructure will hopefully be presented during this year’s festival. In celebration of its 25th annual, Kitchener’s 4-day festival, December 2nd to 5th, will also expand to a 25-day online format due to the pandemic. While the organizing committee awaits public health updates, planning is underway regarding potential entertainment and vendor opportunities. Read the Press Release (PDF)
New Accessible Bavarian Eating Stands for Christkindl Market - "...Designed to give people a place to eat and drink while attending the market, these stands will feature two foldable shelves and one fixed shelf – one for the able bodied at about 40″ off the ground, and another for those in wheelchairs and for children, where a 30″ surface is more appropriate, and with sufficient clearance to allow the wheelchairs to glide easily underneath without bumping into structural members..." Scott Gooch See photos and read more about these cute and accessible eating stands
Festivals Events Ontario (FEO) 2021 Award Winners - In December 2020, the Board of Directors of Festivals and Events Ontario (FEO) made the decision to Adapt, Pivot and Evolve from the scheduled in-person annual FEO Conference on February 22-24, 2021 in the beautiful city of Niagara Falls, to a Virtual on-line Summit... FEO recognized that many of our supplier members showed great ingenuity and courage by pivoting away from their usual line of business to embrace the need for PPE, hand sanitation, fencing, barriers and more to assist municipalities and private sector with COVID-19 protocols. Individuals and organizations needed to be recognized and congratulated for bravely jumping into the unknown, learning the ropes and successfully keeping their business or event alive during these troubling times. We were pleased to unveil the FEO Achievement Program specifically for our FEO Members in 2019 and 2020 that were able to Adapt - Pivot - Evolve. These aren’t just buzz words; they are strong pillars for our industry as it navigates its way through an unprecedented global pandemic.
We congratulate all the FEO Award winners and hope that this recognition helps generate some enthusiasm in their community and anticipation that we are one step closer to a return to normal where we can gather, celebrate and enjoy festivals and events together in person. Dave MacNeil, CEO Festivals and Events Ontario Read the FEO Press Release (PDF)
Pioneers Day recognition:
"As we eagerly await the Christkindl Market, I would like to recognize and honour the Market for keeping the spirit of German Christmas alive in our community and in our hearts. Dozens of festive outdoor huts and food stands line our main street every year, treating residents and tourists to the sights and smells of the holiday season... " Raj Saini, Liberal Candidate for Kitchener Centre
"Christkindl Market is Canada’s original German Christmas market and is touted as one of the 'Top 100 Festivals & Events in Ontario' that brings people together. It is this festival that fills the downtown in the fine German tradition of great food, fine artisan crafts and Christmas vendors. The presence of amazing choirs provides an experience second to none to engender a festive Christmas spirit..." Karen Redman, Waterloo Regional Chair
Mike Farwell, 570 RADIO News - December 23, 2020 >> Listen to the Mike Farwell & Marjorie Wood Interview
The Record, Front Page News Article, By: Liz Monteiro, Record Reporter, December. 11, 2020 >> Online Christkindl Market keeping tradition alive.
Kitchener Today News, Dec 7, 2020 - By: Luke Schulz. >> Kitchener’s Christkindl Market goes on virtually despite COVID-19
Das Journal Article, December 2, 2020 - >>Experience Christkindl Market Online beginning Dec. 1st
Press Release - Nov 30, 2020 - >> Experience the Christkindl Market Online beginning Dec. 1 - Press Release 2, City of Kitchener
Spoke, Conestoga College News - December 9, 2020 By: Mike Reitmeier >> Cabin fever causes and cures: How to enjoy winter in lockdown
CBC News - October 30, 2020 >> Kitchener's Christkindl Market goes online Event to feature 24-day online Advent Calendar