Top Ten Things to Do in November

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1 See Bond. James Bond.

Quantum of Solace, the sequel to Casino Royale, hits theaters later this month. In this latest installment, which opens Nov 5 and is as action-packed as ever, Bond (the sleek Daniel Craig) battles a terrorist who intends to take over Bolivia’s water supply. Watch as Bond journeys through Haiti, Austria and South America decked out in high-tech gadgets and with a Russian-Bolivian agent (Olga Kurylenko) by his side. In interviews, Craig says he’s brushed up on his speed boating and stunt driving skills. And what has Bond girl Kurylenko been working on? Indoor skydiving, also known as body flying. Head to theaters around town such as the Megabox Cinema in the basement of the Sanlitun Village or the Wanda International Cinema in Guomao.

2 Fun Run for a Cause

Fed up with spitting in public? Legs feeling a bit rusty? Combine exercise with an initiative to clean up public spaces and improve etiquette by participating in this Fun Run on Nov 8. Events include a 10km run, 5km run, 2km walk, and kids bicycle/tricycle race. Registration starts at 10.15am and the event runs from 11am-2pm. RMB 40 per person with pre-registration or 70 RMB on the day of the event. There are only 400 tickets, so early pre-registration is advised. Post-race festivities include a kids rock band and food, as well as etiquette reminder cards. Located at Dragon Bay Villa in Shunyi, next to the International School of Beijing.

3 Go Fruit-Picking

Before the cold chill of winter descends upon Beijing, take advantage of the crisp air and warm sunshine and go fruit-picking. Pay a visit to the organic farm Agrilandia, or pick peaches, apples, and pears from the many orchards in Huairou District near Hongluo Temple, Mutianyu Great Wall, Yanqi Lake or Qinglong Gorges. For those feeling too lazy to trek to orchards, grab a slice of hot apple pie from Grandma’s Kitchen.

4 International Theater & Dance Festival

The sixth annual festival presents 24 shows spanning from operas, musicals, and ballet performances to street dance and drama from Nov 11-25. The shows, presented by Beijing Culture Art Foundation, hail from the UK, France, Germany, Korea, the US and Israel. Experience Kunqu opera, Peking Opera, an American modern dancing troupe, and flamenco from Spanish choreographer Paco Mora. In major theaters around town, including NCPA, Poly Theatre, Peking University Concert Hall and Tianqiao Theater. For tickets call 6406 8888 or 6655 0000 or 6506 5646 or visit

5 Christmas Charity Luncheon

Join the International Newcomers’ Network for a three-course Christmas meal with imported wines on Nov 24 from 11am-2pm at the China World Hotel. Shop for silk gifts, jewelry, Christmas trinkets and cards at the gift bazaar. Enjoy a live performance by the Beijing Huiling home and participate in a silent auction to win great prizes. Proceeds go to Bethel Foster Hospital, Beijing Huiling, Magic Hospital, the Morning Sun Center of Hope and more. What’s better than food, fun and shopping for a good cause?

6 Canterville Ghost

For a dramatic night out, see a performance of Oscar Wilde’s hilarious novella about a grumpy English ghost who haunts an American family in a old castle, only to find himself dodging booby traps and tormented by the family’s children. “The Canterville Ghost,” which runs Nov 28-30, was adapted for the stage by TNT, the British theater company, and should be fun for precocious ones who can appreciate the wit and genius of Oscar Wilde. With a running time of 90 minutes, the play is the perfect length for a family outing. In English with Chinese subtitles. Tickets at 6551 6906. RMB 60-200. 7pm. Peking University Hall (6275 1278) Additional shows in Meilanfang Theater Dec 12-14.

7 Gobble Gobble

‘Tis the season to gather your closest friends and family members, spend an afternoon roasting a turkey, and eat pumpkin pie to celebrate Thanksgiving on Nov 27. Even if celebrating Thanksgiving isn’t a regular tradition for you, it’s a great chance to host a dinner party or stay in and cook with family. Tired of turkey? Whip up a meal with duck, chicken or goose. See Food For Thought for novel ways to prepare Thanksgiving dinner without an oven. Pop in a movie to keep the kids entertained or let the little ones try their hands at cooking (think baking cookies, not carving the turkey).

8 Get a Flu Shot

Afraid of needles? Imagine being couped up in bed with an achy body, sore throat and fever – then consider the annoyance of a three-second shot. Yeah, we thought so. It’s best to get everyone vaccinated, especially expecting mothers, as the flu shot has been shown to be effective in babies exposed to the vaccine while in the womb. Most hospitals and clinics offer flu shots this time of year, so call up and make an appointment.

9 Children’s Music Day

Music, the universal language, benefits children’s development and happiness. Kindermusik extraordinaire Sarah Peel Li organizes her second annual music day on Nov 30, so head for live family-friendly performances and a bazaar of children’s specialty products at the Canadian International School. All proceeds go to local children’s charities. RMB 50 per family or RMB 25 per person. For more information visit

10 Outfit Yourself for Winter

Put away all those summer dresses and sandals – it’s time to stock up on winter clothing and get bundled up in cold weather attire! Get mittens and sweaters at local markets, buy a made-to-measure cashmere sweater at the wool market at Qinghe Maofangcheng Pifa Shichang in Qinghe (清河毛纺城批发市场), or pick up stylish hats to keep ears warm at Okaidi (in The Place or Solana). For those who prefer puffy down jackets and solid footwear, head to the Sanlitun Village for The North Face and L.L. Bean, brands known for keeping bodies cozy in alpine temperatures.

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