What's happening in Christchurch in November 2016?

  • Guy Fawkes Christchurch
  • Canterbury A and P Show
  • Nutcracker Ballet Theatre Royal
  • The Gruffalo

November is probably one of the busiest months in the Garden City, with Cup and Show Week front and centre! This is the time of year when plenty of visitors come to town (and some of the locals head off elsewhere over the long weekend).

It's also that time of year when exams are happening or nearly over and end of year events start to kick in. And let's not mention how many shopping days left till Christmas!

So if you're looking for a fast run down of the events happening around the place over the next month or so, keep on reading.

Cup and Show Week Events:

The A and P Show, Wednesday Nov 9 - Friday November 11, 2016

Of course the "main event" of this week is the annual Agricultural and Pastoral Show held at the Christchurch Show Grounds, which brings the country to town and encourages everyone to flex their credit cards while they watch the manly art of wood chopping, animals parading, dogs showing, tractors tractoring and the Yeah Nah Nahs playing sweet, sweet music (haven't heard of them? They're a new supergroup made up of NZ's best known musos).

You can find travel directions here - hint, you just might want to take a bus this time round and save yourself all the parking hassles.

Entry fee: Check here for the entry ticket prices. If you get in before November 1, they are 25% cheaper than buying at the gate.

Sothys New Zealand 2000 Guineas Day, November 5, 2016

This is the first event of the week's racing calendar and kicks off the activities that make up Cup and Show Week. Guineas Day sees the very best three-year-olds travelling to Riccarton Race Course hoping to follow in the hoof-prints of some of the greats of the Australian turf by crossing the line first in one of the two Guineas races run over the carnival. Gates open at 10am and the racing starts just after midday.

Christchurch Casino Trotting Cup Day, Addington Raceway, Tuesday November 8, 2016

The Christchurch Casino New Zealand Trotting Cup is the country’s most prestigious two mile harness race held at Addington Raceway in Christchurch, New Zealand. This is also the day for Fashion in the Field - now known as the Westfield Riccarton Style Stakes. 

Chill out on the Lindauer Lawn or join the other punters in the stands. Gates open at 9.30am. The first race of the day runs at 12.05pm and the feature race, the Christchurch Casino New Zealand Trotting Cup, starts at 5.15pm. The racing action continues through to 6.30pm. 

Show Day Races, Addington Raceway, November 11, 2016

If you are looking for a family day out, then the Show Day Races is the day for you. Bring the kids, a picnic and sit back, relax and enjoy the wonderful day’s racing. There will be children’s entertainment and activities on course and live music from well-known Christchurch music makers, The Black Velvet Band.

Christchurch Casino NZ Cup, Riccarton Park Racecourse, November 12, 2016

This is the final event of Cup and Show Week, at the smaller Riccarton Park Racecourse, and another occasion to get out your high heels and fascinators for the Fashion in the Field competition (or just because where else are you going to wear a fascinator?!) The racecourse is only open to those over 18 years, so this is not designed as a family day out, but instead as one of the most popular racing events in the country. 

Gates open at 9am. Corporate suites are open from 11.30am. The first race is at 12.10pm. 

General Admission tickets are $27.50 plus booking fee if you book online or cost on race day if available is $40. 

Other Events

Treetech Guy Fawkes Fireworks Spectacular, Brighton Beach, November 5, 2016

Put on your red shoes and join in with a David Bowie themed Treetech Guy Fawkes Fireworks Spectacular, Saturday 5 November, New Brighton Beach.

Far above the moon, the fireworks display will start at 9:10pm, with a light show under New Brighton Pier beginning at 9pm. Food stalls will be open from 5pm so come down early, get a comfy spot among the dunes and settle in to remember a hero, just for one day. 

Motukarara Fireworks Night, November 5, 5:30pm – 10:30pm

If you hate the beach and can't be bothered finding parking out in New Brighton or want a more rural fireworks event, check out the Motukarara Fireworks Night at the Waihora Domain, Duck Pond Road.

The evening kicks off at 5.30pm with live music, food stalls, bouncy castle and plenty of other activities to keep the family occupied and well fed till the skies get dark enough to enjoy the display.

Bring cash for eats and drinks as there is no eftpos available, and the entry fee is $20 per car, or $5 per person for walkins. Funds raised go to local schools and maintenance of the Domain.

Imperial Russian Ballet, Nutcracker,  Isaac Theatre Royal, November 26 and 27, 2016

Following their sell-out 2015 performances of Swan Lake, the Imperial Russian Ballet Company return to New Zealand to perform The Nutcracker.

The Nutcracker is famous for Tchaikovsky’s music.  The illustrious cast of the Imperial Russian Ballet Company enjoy performing The Nutcracker more than any other ballet from their extensive repertoire, especially when they are joined by children from local ballet schools in the cities that they perform in around the world.

Tickets from $53.00, bookings through Ticketek.

The Gruffalo, Isaac Theatre Royal, November 10 - 12, 2016

A mouse took a stroll through the deep, dark wood ...

After sellout seasons throughout the world, including the West End and Broadway, and throughout Australia and New Zealand in 2009 – 11 and 2014, The Gruffalo returns in 2016! Let your imagination run wild with songs, laughs and fun for children aged 3 and up, and their adults.

Tickets $28.00 plus booking fees, through Ticketek.