Just in time for the first snowfall, the Toronto Christmas Market has officially opened.

As flurries started to hit the city at 4 p.m. on Thursday, the market located in the Distillery District welcomed patrons.

The director of the market, Mathew Rosenblatt, sat down with CP24 on opening day to chat about the “Christmas magic” people feel while enjoying the entertainment, shopping and spectacles.

“I think the most important thing for people to know if they have never been before is although there is really about a million things to do there, the reason why it’s great and the reason why it’s world-class is because of a feeling,” he said. “It’s a place where the city gets together, everyone is welcome and you just feel like you are immersed in Christmas and you rediscover the magic of Christmas.”

Over the past nine years of operation, the popularity of the market has grown. Last year, 675,000 people attended.

“We actually don’t want more people this year,” Rosenblatt said. “We want to have the experience inside the market something where people can still stroll and still be romantic and still have that sort of magical feeling and if we put too many people in we might lose that so it might take a little bit longer to get in this year but once you get in it’s going to be Christmas magic.”

The market is not for profit. There is an admission fee on weekends, but it is free during the week.

“We have a lot of sponsors and the ticketing we charge on the weekends, which is only $6, still, just because of the volumes, pays for a lot of expenses when we run for 34 days,” Rosenblatt said.

To mark opening day, a tree lighting ceremony and a musical performance by Sharon Riley and Faith Chorale will be held at 6 p.m.

The northbound and southbound curb lanes on Parliament Street between Lake Shore Boulevard East and Front Street East will be closed from Friday at 4 p.m. until Nov. 18 at midnight to accommodate the market, according to the City of Toronto.

The market is scheduled to remain open until Dec. 23.