*Please note that events in Richmond will look a little different in 2022. Some events have moved to an online format or been postponed.*
Depending on the time of year, there’s always something to do. Visitors and locals alike wait all year for some of Richmond’s culture-rich annual celebrations like Chinese New Year, the Steveston Salmon Festival, and the Richmond Maritime Festival.
The Steveston Salmon Festival is celebrated on Canada Day and is known as “Canada’s biggest little birthday party”. Check out your options—Richmond’s the place to be.
Winter in the Village
Chinese New Year
Winter in the Village
The Countdown is on for Steveston’s Winter in the Village December 2021!
This year might look a little different, but Steveston Village will once again be transformed into a winter wonderland for the holiday season. From December 1 to 31, there will be a sparkling array of free or low-cost Christmas events, activities, and attractions for the entire family. A one-stop shop for Yuletide fun, the charming heritage village is hosting dedicated activities for locals keen to tap into the spirit of the season.
The Best Time of Year is All Year Long
If events are your passion, Richmond has many to choose from. Chinese New Year—also known as Lunar New Year—is one of Richmond’s Chinese community’s most important events. The next Chinese New Year is February 1, 2022.
Richmond has lots of spring break activities at attractions, historic sites, and community centres. There is always a full slate of kid-friendly things to see and do, like the Lansdowne Centre Outdoor Spring Carnival.
May to September
The Steveston Farmers & Artisans Market is held on certain Sundays, featuring fresh produce, handmade jewelry, artisan crafts, and live entertainment. The market is located in the parking lot across from the Steveston Community Centre.
May to October
On weekends, the Richmond Night Market offers clothes, gadgets, and other merchandise alongside booths serving sweet and savoury street food and exotic drinks, all set to a soundtrack of live music, vocal merchants, cultural performances, and carnival games.
Doors Open Richmond is an annual arts, culture, and heritage festival that offers free activities and experiences to visitors and locals of all ages at up to fifty partner sites. These include National Historic Sites, museums, places of worship, art studios, city facilities, and specialty businesses.
Canada’s “biggest little birthday party” used to draw more than 70,000 people to Steveston every year. It kicks off with a pancake breakfast and parade, followed by various exhibits, live music, and performances. The highlights are the salmon barbecue, where more than 1,200 pounds of fresh salmon is grilled over open fire pits and a jaw-dropping fireworks display.
Don’t miss Steveston’s Winter in the Village during December. It’s an annual ritual for many families who wander the twinkling, festive streets, getting into the spirit of the season.
Dressed in red, waving little flags, and often sporting temporary maple leaf tattoos, people of all ages roll into Steveston for a full day of fun and festivities.
What’s the Steveston Salmon Festival?
The Steveston Salmon Festival is a unique Canada Day party that also celebrates Richmond’s roots. The highlight is a huge salmon barbecue. The day-long roster of activities and entertainment includes live music, free entry to several historic sites, and a sparkling fireworks display.
When and Where to Celebrate
Canada Day celebrations take place throughout Canada on July 1, a public holiday. Richmond’s activity-packed day starts in Steveston Village in the early morning and runs into the evening. Most of the day’s activities are free! Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Canada Day in Richmond.
What to Expect
Festivities start with a pancake breakfast, followed by a parade (look for Sammy the Salmon, a favourite local mascot). The day holds multiple stages showcasing live music, cultural performances, vintage car displays, craft and horticulture demonstrations, and much more.
If you miss the Salmon Barbecue (it starts around 10:00am), plenty of food trucks and many of Steveston’s restaurants remain open. In the evening, headline musical acts take to the largest stage before—at around 10:15pm—Steveston’s grand fireworks finale.
How to Get There
Parking in Steveston is at a premium on Canada Day, so we recommend public transit, free shuttle buses, or by bike (free bike valet services are provided).
Chinese New Year
If you attend a single event in Richmond, Chinese New Year is the one
For 15 days, Richmond is awash with celebrations. Alongside traditional lion and dragon dance performances, pop-up flower and gift markets sell beautiful floral arrangements and red-and-gold decorations, and the city’s Chinese restaurants offer mind-boggling feasts—we’re talking 10-12 courses in one sitting! Good thing Richmond has North America’s most authentic Chinese cuisine.
Where to Celebrate
Dining out is customary to celebrate special occasions, and Chinese New Year (also called Lunar New Year or Spring Festival) is arguably the most important of them all. Large, round tables at Richmond’s Chinese restaurants typically overflow this time of year with lively and elaborate feasts. Local favourites include Jade Seafood Restaurant, Sea Harbour Seafood, Fisherman’s Terrace, Shiang Garden Seafood Restaurant, Continental Seafood Restaurant, Empire Seafood, and Chef Tony Seafood Restaurant. All offer banquet-style menus for large groups. Make reservations.
Richmond’s monasteries and temples also host events to celebrate, and guests are always welcome. Of particular interest is the International Buddhist Temple. Modeled after the Forbidden City in Beijing, few other places in Canada offer as magical a venue to celebrate Chinese New Year. For a Tibetan take on the festivities, head to the Thrangu Monastery, where prayers and meditation services are open to all.
The biggest celebration in the city is at Aberdeen Centre. The mall hosts a popular flower and gift market, live performances, and a Chinese New Year’s Eve countdown event that attracts many locals and visitors alike.
When is Chinese New Year
2022: February 1, Year of the Tiger
2023: January 22, Year of the Rabbit
2024: February 10, Year of the Dragon
MORE ABOUT CHINESE NEW YEAR
Also called Lunar New Year or Spring Festival, Chinese New Year marks the beginning of the new lunar year based on the Chinese calendar and is a spirited celebration that lasts from the new moon through to the 15th day of the first Lunar calendar month. The lunar new year is celebrated in much of Asia, including China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Malaysia.
Traditionally, families gather on lunar New Year’s Eve for a reunion dinner. It is the most important meal of the year. Noodles are eaten for long life; dumplings, shaped like ancient Chinese money, represent wealth and prosperity. Spring rolls, a traditional food of the Spring Festival, are said to look like gold bars. Lettuce wraps are eaten because they play on the Chinese word for “fortune” which is also the word for “lettuce;” and large, golden fruits like tangerines, oranges, and pomelos symbolize fullness and wealth. Yum.
What’s Going On?
Planning the perfect weekend in Richmond? Here’s our up-to-the-minute guide to what’s happening throughout the upcoming weekend. If you want to make a full day of it, consider adding some local restaurants and attractions to your itinerary and make the most of your time in Richmond.
To use our event calendar, select a date range along with any filters you wish to apply. The calendar is updated daily, so be sure to check back regularly.
Do you have an event we should know about? Please fill out the fields below in order to have your event listed in our online calendar.
Please note: your event will not be automatically added to the calendar. Once you click “Submit Event”, the information must be approved to ensure all of the details have been included. As this is a tourism-related calendar, your event or activity must be open to visitors and have broad appeal.
Tourism Richmond reserves the right to edit submitted text or to reject submissions. You will be notified if your event cannot be approved.