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Mistletoe Mountain coming to Mount Alverno Luxury Resort

December 1, 2022   ·   0 Comments

By Constance Scrafield

Following the success of the premier Mistletoe Mountain weekend at Mount Alverno Resort on Heart Lake Road last December, the resort is pleased to announce the return of the Mistletoe Mountain this year, for this weekend. The event runs Friday (Dec. 2) to Sunday (Dec. 4). 

“It has been a great year here at Mount Alverno,” said Chris Bell, an executive at the resort. “We got to know what the property can do. We’re super pumped about what’s happening this weekend. This year, through Brookes’ leadership, there will be food trucks, more vendors; the portfolio is more extensive.”

We were having a telephone interview with Mr. Bell and his colleague, Brooke Schmidt to talk about the festival, how it is growing in concept and attractiveness and the charity it is set to support this year.

Mistletoe Mountain is an annual event now. People are in the spirit, they felt, commenting that there are so many good causes in the region.

Ms. Schmidt told us, “We want to support one cause a year and this year it’s Family Transition Place (FTP).”

Once again, the creative team of Theatre Orangeville is converting the resort’s barn into Santa’s workshops and it should be noted here and now that there has been a call-out for more volunteers as elves to assist Santa in his many roles as a keeper of happy Christmas secrets, a storyteller and bringer of joy and dreams.

“We need more elves this year because Santa is going to be either in his workshop, the North Pole and the other lounge area in [to chat] with the adults,” Mr. Bell explained.

Within the main building of the resort is the repurposed church, built in 1965, which for this weekend, will host the North Pole and Santa will be there some of the time.

The resort’s beautiful patio area with its wonderful views is transformed into the Mystical Mountain Bar.

In a heated tent, holiday movies are to be screened for a couple of hours each day of the weekend.

Mr. Bell and Ms. Schmidt were really pleased to talk about the live entertainment that is part of the festival. Musicians appearing through the weekend include Nicole Christian, Peter Kadar, Josh Piche, Robyn Black and Joe Palawan, and the Juno-nominated band, the Blackburn Brothers; they are performing on Saturday from 7:00 p.m to 9:00 p.m.

Attractions are happening throughout the property over the weekend and as the hours extend to 9:00 p.m., there is a charming evening element to the whole. One of the workshops takes place on Friday, Dec. 2 at 8:00 p.m. of wine tasting from the 13th Street Winery in Niagara.

Two more workshops, plus one for the kids on Sunday, are centred on Christmas decorations for your home with signs, wreaths and ornaments. Tickets are on sale for each of these.

A marketplace is a must for such a festival and last year’s vendors came with goodies and gifts for purchase. That list is extended this year. Called an Artisan Market, we are promised plenty of choices to cheer our Yuletide.

Lessons were learned from the first Mistletoe Mountain last year, which Mr. Bell said went extremely well.

“There was a sort of lockdown at the time and on Saturday, there was a snowstorm. The attendance was pretty good even so, limited people in the barn and the reception was lovely. But it looks as though there’s going to be some warm weather this time,” he said.

The development of the resort is largely finished and now the dining room is fully open and the hotel rooms are open.

Of the festival’s donation to FTP, his comment was “We’re not looking to make any money from this and we top up the donation.”

Those lessons from the first year taught them that what is different is opening a week earlier and the level of entertainment. A lot of activities not only for families but also for adults, with a couple of workshops and live music continuing until 9:00 p.m.

Giving Santa his own space for photos. The photographer taking photos is Nick Rose, an “incredible photographer; he does amazing portraits,” was Mr. Bell’s description.

During the year, the resort has been busy with corporate events and weddings. Theatre Orangeville staged their Summer Arts Festival there and many other retreats and receptions were held at the resort.

Brooke Schmidt summed it up, “Everything happens here. Why wouldn’t you want to come to the Mistletoe Mountain? With the family, yes but on a date for two, for all that’s going on and then maybe a glass of wine and something to eat while you’re listening to live entertainment.”

Her personal dream is for there to be a Hallmark movie made here about the Christmas Holidays.

“We want the community to connect with each other and have a lovely time on the property here,” she said simply.

Chris Bell added, “Next year we will have a conservatory of 1,000 square feet. That’ll give just the atmosphere we’re really trying to put together this year.

“We opened for Valentine’s Day and it’s been great. Our hotel was fully opened July 1. That’s done well too.”

Ms. Schmidt remarked, “Every property in the region is different.”

That is part of what makes it so interesting to visit and live here.

A detailed schedule is posted for this upcoming week with Mistletoe Mountain on the resort’s website and here is the link:

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