Queen Victoria Market has a busy five weeks ahead with the Summer Night Market launching this Wednesday (21 November) alongside a full calendar of Christmas festivities including the arrival of Melbourne's first outdoor summer ice rink in partnership with Air Canada.
Wednesday nights will see the Market’s historic sheds transform into Melbourne’s hottest summer hangout with more than 60 global street food stalls and festival bars, more than 100 specialty fashion, homewares and general merchandise stalls, plus a rotating weekly line-up of live music and entertainment.
What to expect in the 2018/19 season
The Summer playground: Visitors can enjoy a variety of backyard-style games from a giant toy box, including giant Jenga, checkers, totem tennis, ka-plunk, stickz, bubble balls.and chess.
Free weekly live entertainment: Including swinging honky-tonk, pop, acoustic and dance DJ sets.
New street food to try this year: Polish dumplings from Pierogi Pierogi, Japanese street food from Miso Fresh, arepas and empanadas from Colombiantojos and French crêpes from Little Paris.
Returning favourites: The Cypriot Kitchen's halloumi chips, loukoumades (Greek doughnuts) from Taki's Balls and Italian cannoli from That's Amore Cheese.
Refreshing drinks: traditional lemonade, crisp pale ale from Brick Lane Brewing, apple cider from Yarra Valley's Coldstream Brewery and cocktails from Canadian Club.
Season dates: Wednesday 21 November 2018 to Wednesday 20 March 2019 (excluding Wednesday 26 December)
Time: 5:00pm – 10:00pm
Where: Queen Victoria Market, corner Queen and Therry Streets, Melbourne.
Cost: Free entry with food and drinks available for purchase.
Air Canada Ice Rink: 1-24 December
An outdoor ice rink during Australian summer? That's right, Queen Victoria Market has partnered with Canada’s flag carrier to create Melbourne’s first outdoor summer ice rink.
The Air Canada Ice Rink - the centrepiece of the Market’s festive celebrations - will invite market shoppers to enjoy the magical spirit of a northern hemisphere Christmas during the first three weeks of Australia’s summer (1–24 December 2018). The Air Canada Ice Rink will ‘pop-up’ under the Market’s 140-year-old historic sheds and merge Canada's famous winter culture with Australia's summer celebrations.
With the airline expanding their non-stop routes from Melbourne to Vancouver, Air Canada is also offering Melburnians a tempting taste of Canada. Rink-side treats will include maple syrup ice cream from the Market’s Geloso Gelateria, Canada's legendary poutine (a national treasure of French fries, cheese curds and gravy), plus fairy floss and popcorn for little ones.
When: 1–24 December 2018 on market days (Tuesday and Thursday through to Sunday). The Market and the ice rink will be open on Christmas Eve, Monday 24 December. On Wednesdays, the rink will be open in the evening only, 5pm–10pm alongside the Summer Night Market. Rink open times vary each day - visit www.qvm.com.au/whats-on for full details.
Where: Queen Victoria Market, C Shed, enter via Peel Street
Tickets: Tickets can be booked online at aircanadaicerink.tailoredticketing.com and in person at the rink. Adults $15, Children $10 (under 14 years), Kanga Skating Aides $8, Family (2 adults 2 children) $45. Ticket price includes skate hire and helmets and knee pads. Sessions begin at the start of the hour and run for 45 minutes.
Christmas at the Market
This festive season, Queen Victoria Market will embrace the Christmas spirit with an action-packed schedule of live entertainment and activities.
Sustainable gift-making workshops: The Beeswax Wrap Workshop (9 December) will teach shoppers how to make their own beeswax wraps; a simple reusable alternative to cling wrap and plastic bags. The Preserves Workshop (9 December) will teach market-goers the tradition of preserving produce using modern recipes.
A Christmas trail for kids: Little ones can explore the Market guided by their very own Christmas trail map. Pick up a free map from the new Visitor Hub in String Bean Alley or download a digital version online and gather up the 12 clues to win a great prize.
Santa’s mailbox: Children will be able to send their wish lists directly to Santa’s workshop at the North Pole via his mailbox, located in C Shed from Saturday 1 December. All letters will receive a reply!
Visits from Santa Claus himself: Santa will be pulling up in his sleigh at the Market on Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 December to share his festive cheer with mini market-goers
Queen Vic Market will be Melbourne’s one-stop Christmas shop to stock up on seasonal food favourites, gift ideas and stocking fillers from the wide variety of fresh produce and specialty merchandise traders.
The Market will be open for the five days leading up to Christmas Day, with more than 165,000 people expected to flock to the iconic halls and sheds, filling bags and baskets with everything from fresh prawns to oysters, turkey to ham, mince pies to shortbread, and cherries to passionfruit
Open: Tuesdays and Thursdays through to Sundays, including the five days leading up to Christmas Day NB: This includes Monday 24 December (Christmas Eve) – Mondays are usually a non-market day
Closed: 25-26 & 31 December 2018 and 1-2 January 2019
Times: View Christmas trading hours: www.qvm.com.au/christmas
• Beeswax Wrap Workshop | Sunday 9 December – 10am, 11am, 1pm & 2pm | $25 | A Shed
• Preserves Workshop | Sunday 9 December – 10am & 1pm | $25 | A Shed
• Primary School Choirs | Tuesday 4 & 11 December – 11am | Queen Street
• Santa’s Mailbox | Saturday 1 December onward | C Shed
• Santa at the Market | Saturday 22 & Sunday 23 December – 10am to 2pm | Roaming