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12 Things You Didn’t Know About Christmas in Canada

Do you know Rudolph's Canadian connection? Or how many turkeys get devoured at Canadian dinner tables?

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christmas-facts-egg-nogPhoto: Shutterstock

Canadians Love Eggnog

Don’t knock the nog. According to Statistics Canada, more than 5.9-million litres of eggnog were sold in Canada in December 2018. While eggnog isn’t everyone’s idea of a delicious holiday tipple, it’s obvious that many Canadians do enjoy it.

Get into the spirit of the season with the greatest Christmas cookie recipes of all time.

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Christmas Fun Facts - A Christmas StoryPhoto: Amazon

A Christmas Story Has Canadian Roots

The risqué leg lamp. Ralphie’s sliding rejection from Santa. Flick’s tongue mishap. Can you imagine the holidays without an annual screening of A Christmas Story? While the tale appears to be all-American, a substantial part of the movie was filmed in Canada. Ralphie’s school, the Chinese restaurant where his family eats Christmas dinner, the famous swearing scene as well as the interior segments were all shot in Canada. And where else would you find the old TTC “red rocket” streetcars?

In the mood for a very merry marathon? Check out our countdown of the best Christmas movies of all time.

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Christmas fun facts - Canada's Parliament holiday light displayPhoto: Shutterstock

The Prime Minister Doesn’t Want Your Gifts

If you want to send a little holiday cheer to the Prime Minster, think again. The Federal Accountability Act of 2006—as well as security protocol—state that Canada’s PM and his family cannot accept monetary presents, gift cards or perishable items such as Christmas cookies or cakes. And don’t even bother sending other items—they may be severely damaged during the security screening process.

These vintage Christmas cakes are almost too good to give away.

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Christmas fun facts - Holiday shopping in pandemic face masksPhoto: Shutterstock

We’re Really Tightening Our Purse Strings

According to a Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada study, the average Canadian is planning on spending $555 on gifts this year—that’s a small dip from $588 in 2020 and $583 in 2019. The most common rationale for a more frugal festive season? Twenty-two per cent of respondents say it’s a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Could you use a laugh? Check out our favourite holiday jokes of all time.

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Christmas fun facts - Toronto Eaton Centre holiday decorationsPhoto: Albert Pego / Shutterstock.com

Canadians are Heading Back to the Mall

That same survey conducted by the Chartered Professional Accounts of Canada (CPA Canada) discovered that Canadians are ready to return to in-person holiday shopping. Last year, lockdown conditions across much of the country prompted a third of Canadians to do the bulk of their holiday shopping online. This year, however, only a quarter have indicated they plan to shop predominantly online, with 35 per cent intending to get most of their gifts from brick-and-mortar stores.

“For those heading out to shop in person, we recommend starting early,” says Doretta Thompson, CPA Canada’s Financial Literacy Leader. “The pandemic has created supply chain issues that may affect holiday retail shopping this year, so we encourage Canadians— particularly the nine per cent who say they are last-minute shoppers—to join the 21 per cent who plan to start their shopping promptly.”

Tired of giving presents that end up collecting dust on the shelf? These great gifts under $50 are guaranteed to please.

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Christmas fun facts - Letters to SantaPhoto: Shutterstock

Santa Has a Lot of Canadian Elves

Since 1982, Santa’s Post Office has employed mailroom elves from Canada, and he has received more than 20 million letters from children around the world. Canada Post volunteers donate over 200,000 hours of their time each year to help Santa respond to every letter that arrives on his doorstep.

Putting pen to paper for your own season’s greetings? Here’s helpful advice on what to write in a Christmas card.

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Christmas tree farmPhoto: Shutterstock

Canada Grows A Lot of Christmas Trees

Did you know our country had 1,872 Christmas tree farms in 2016? According to Statistics Canada, the farms were concentrated in British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.

If you can’t spend Christmas in Canada, you might as well take a little piece of the country with you. In 2017, Canada exported over two million Christmas trees to over 20 countries, including Barbados, France, Jamaica and Thailand.

This is the best time to buy a Christmas tree in Canada.

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ReindeerPhoto: Shutterstock

Rudolph Was Canadian

If you were born in Canada after 1964, your Christmases probably involved an annual viewing of the “animagic” holiday special, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Rankin-Bass, an American production company, created this beloved Christmas program, but did you know that there’s a secret Canadian connection? All the characters’ voices (with the exception of Sam the Snowman) were performed by Canadian actors, singers and voiceover artists at the RCA Victor Studios in Toronto.

Count down to the holidays with the best Christmas movies on Netflix right now.

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Christmas turkeyPhoto: Shutterstock

Canadians Really Dig Turkey

According to Turkey Farmers of Canada, Canadians purchased a mighty 2.9-million whole turkeys for Christmas 2020. That amounts to 41 per cent of all turkeys sold that year.

Don’t miss these laugh-out-loud funny Christmas stories shared by our readers.

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Christmas fun facts - Nutcracker Ballet ballerinasPhoto: Shutterstock

Canadians Can’t Get Enough of Ballet

Dreaming of Sugar Plum fairies, mice and soldiers dancing through your holiday season? Since 1995, the National Ballet of Canada’s The Nutcracker has been wowing audiences from coast to coast. Over one million people have watched the annual performance since its premiere, and as of 2018, 7,410 pairs of pointe shoes have been used by The Nutcracker‘s ballerinas.

Check out more quintessential Canadian holiday traditions.

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Lighthouse in Nova ScotiaPhoto: Shutterstock

Christmas Isn’t Only Once a Year

In some corners of Canada, it’s Christmas 365 days a year. Welcome to Reindeer Station (Northwest Territories), Christmas Island (Nova Scotia), Sled Lake (Saskatchewan), Holly (Ontario), Noel (Nova Scotia), Turkey Point (Ontario) and Snowflake (Manitoba).

Here are more funny place names across Canada.

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Christmas giftPhoto: Shutterstock

Canadians Are Always Giving Back

According to Statistics Canada, over 12.7-million Canadians (41 percent of the population aged 15 and over) volunteered for charities, non-profits and community organizations in 2018. Meanwhile, the amount in donations to charities claimed by Canadian taxfilers in 2017 was an impressive $9.6 billion.

If you enjoyed these fun Christmas facts, be sure to check out the 20 best places to spend Christmas in Canada.