Five cool things to do this week (November 22 to 28)

Christmas markets, ice skating, and cheering Katniss — fun outings fit for the whole family.

Fried cheese pops and mint to

Photo by Roberto Caruso, Fried cheese pops and mint toddy

1. See Catching Fire

After a long list of positive reviews from newsstand critics about the latest instalment of the Hunger Games trilogy, Catching Fire, and the recent release of the soundtrack featuring Lorde, Ellie Goulding and Patti Smith, our level of excitement has hit a code red. Opening night is this Friday, see you there? #teamkatniss

2. Make your gifts meaningful

A recent poll done by Ipsos uncovered that 94 percent of Canadians would prefer to find a meaningful gift over an extravagant one stuffed in their stocking this year. If you aren’t a DIY maven, not to worry, ’tis the season for craft markets! This week, go get and inspired and discover endless ways to create a handmade holiday.

One of a Kind, November 28 – December 8, Direct Energy Centre, Toronto
Vancouver Christmas Market, November 22 – December 24, Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza, Vancouver
Dalplex Christmas Craft Market, November 22-24, Dalplex, Halifax
Silver Springs Christmas Crafters Market, November 23, Calgary

3. Take a walk and eat

We can’t think of a better way to spend a weekend than tasting our way through a few of our favourite urban pockets, can you? This weekend, head downtown and learn a thing or two about your cities heritage while indulging your palette with an array of seasonal flavours on a neighbourhood food tour.

Dundas West and Ossington Food Tour, Toronto
Local Tasting Tours, Halifax
Gastown Tasting Tour, Vancouver

4. Sharpen your skates

Ready for another season of perfecting your sit-spin? Canadian temperatures have dropped sufficiently that public skating in visitor favourites such as Nathan Philips Square in Toronto and Olympic Plaza in Calgary are expected to open imminently. The zamboni has already paved the way for skaters at Robson Square in Vancouver, so why not grab a thermos of hot coco, bundle up in your Canada Goose, and hit the rink?

5. Rock the vote!

November 25th marks Federal By-Elections in Bourassa, Brandon-Souris, Provencher, and Toronto Centre. Sadly, the 2011 Federal election marked the second lowest turnout in Canadian history, which naturally has us now wondering: what’s cooler than hitting the polls? This week, rock the vote if your city is listed above.

Elections Canada