Ontario Summer Fun Newsletter – Things to do in Ontario

 

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What are YOU going to do this weekend?
May 14, 2015
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Have you been waiting for this weekend with baited breath? With the first long weekend of the summer season, we can finally shed some of those layers and get out to enjoy some good weather.  Here are just a few of the many fantastic things you can do around Ontario to enjoy this wonderful long weekend.
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Amusement Parks:
Go Karts/Mini Golf:
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If you have young kids, as I do, they’ve been itching to get outside and enjoy some fun in the sun!  While it’s not quite the season yet for waterparks, you can enjoy one of the many outdoor amusement parks in Ontario. In Bracebridge, (Central Ontario) there’s Santa’s Village Family Entertainment Park where, starting from May 16-18, you can enjoy Sportsland & the Aerial Park. (check website for additional opening dates.) In the GTA, Centreville Amusement Park on the Toronto Islands has always been a favourite in my family.  On a hot day, be sure to try the Log Flume Ride! You can also let your imagination run wild and visit the land of fairytales at Storybook Gardens  in London, Ontario (Southwestern Ontario).
Why not try mini golfing or go karting on a gorgeous spring day? In Sudbury (Northern Ontario), there’s the award winning Dinosaur Valley where your game can take you through the world’s longest steel dragon. If you’re in Southwestern Ontario, visit East Park in London to enjoy mini golf, go karts & many more activities.  In Hamilton, Adventure Village has a beautiful setting as well as mini golfing, bumper cars, outdoor laser tag & more. In Central Ontario, pay a visit to Balm Beach Go Karts for a fun filled day (open weekends only during May & June). The Big Apple in Colborne, Eastern Ontario, is a great place for family fun including free mini golf, train rides & more.
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Talk to the animals:
Victoria Day Celebrations/ Fireworks
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Ontario has many places for animal lovers to pay a visit to furry friends. Just 1 hour from Ottawa, there’s Parc Omega, an incredible Canadian safari adventure, where wildlife comes right up to your car to visit. In Hamilton (Southwestern Ontario), at the African Lion Safari, you can drive your car through your own safari adventure, right here at home. Learn all about & visit with donkeys at the Donkey Sanctuary in Guelph (open Sundays & Wednesdays). Jungle Cat World Adventure Park in the GTA lets you spend the day & even stay the night to immerse yourself in the animal world. In the Niagara region (Stevensville, Ontario), Safari Niagara lets you spend the day with more than 750 native & exotic animals, reptiles & birds.
One of my favourite childhood memories of Victoria Day is of crowding into my neighbour’s backyard to watch the fireworks. If you don’t have a neighbourhood fireworks party, there are lots of places to gather to catch a great show. In Nobleton (GTA), the Victoria Day Fair has entertainment & fun activities all day & fireworks beginning at dark. Toronto is well known for its incredible fireworks show at Ashbridges Bay – it only lasts 15 minutes – so don’t be late! Blue Mountain, in Central Ontario, has fireworks over the mountain on Saturday, in addition to great concerts & entertainment all weekend long. In Ottawa, watch the fireworks at Dow’s Lake as part of the 70th anniversary of the Tulip Festival. If you’re in Kingston for Victoria Day, check out the celebrations & nighttime fireworks at Lake Ontario Park.
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Sit on a Patio at a Brewery or Winery
Gaming & Racing
What could be better than sipping a cold drink on a great patio on a beautiful spring day?  Why not pay a visit to a winery or microbrewery – especially one with outdoor seating? In Toronto, Mill Street Brew Pub & Mill Street Beer Hall in the historic Distillery District, has delicious craft beer paired with great eats and tons of seating both inside & on their spacious patio.   
At Georgian Hills Vineyards & Winery in the Blue Mountains (Central Ontario), learn about & enjoy their wines outdoors on their beautiful property or at the end of a bike tour of the local area. (Tour details & reservations online.)  In Prince Edward County (Eastern Ontario), pay a visit to Waupoos Estate Winery for a tour of the gorgeous grounds, a wine tasting or a meal in the Gazebo Restaurant on the shores of Lake Ontario.  In good weather, the tented patio is also open for dining - contact the winery for more information.
If you’re feeling lucky, why not make a bet at a racetrack, casino or OLG?  There are OLGs all across Ontario where you can try your hand at the slots or at the table games – just visit their website to find a location near you. In the GTA region, The Great Blue Heron Charity Casino serves up great food at multiple restaurants & has plenty of slots & table games to enjoy. If horses are your thing, visit the Rideau Carlton Raceway in Ottawa where you can cheer on your horse while eating at a buffet overlooking the track. You can also enjoy horse racing in Clinton, Ontario (Southwestern Ont.) at the Clinton Raceway. Finally, there’s the renowned Casino Rama where you can see world class entertainment, dine in one of the many restaurants or play the slots & table games.
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With winter long gone, it’s finally time to kick up our heels & celebrate. What better time to start than the Victoria Day weekend? So – enjoy some outdoor fun, try your luck at a casino or have fun at one of the many festivals & special events on this weekend.
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Carrassauga
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Huron Fringe Birding Festival
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Thunder Bay Kite Festival
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Pay a visit to Mississauga for the largest multicultural festival in Ontario. It’s a celebration of the culture of more than 72 countries from around the world. You’ll enjoy an international experience of music, food, dance, art, fashion, storytelling & much more!
May 22-24, 2015

(GTA)
Get outside & enjoy a unique view of nature in early spring – birds migrating, wildflowers blooming & everything smelling like spring. Special activities include guided hikes, workshops, photography lessons & more. May 22-24 & May 28-31, 2015

(Southwestern Ont)
Turn your eyes to the sky at this beautiful high-flying festival. It’s all about kites – with kite demonstrations, activities & workshops including advice & lessons from expert kite flyers.
May 24, 2015.

(Northern Ont)
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Cornwall & The Counties
If you’re looking for an Ontario getaway this summer, a visit to Cornwall & the Counties in Southeastern Ontario is a great destination. The city of Cornwall is full of history, culture, fantastic restaurants, shopping & beautiful outdoor space along the St. Lawrence River. The surrounding area of the United Counties is an outdoor recreation paradise with every type of activity at your fingertips as well as special festivals & events all summer long! (Eastern Ontario)
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Laura Secord Legacy Trail
The Laura Secord Legacy Trail in the Niagara Region is the first active and interactive trail in Canada. It takes you on the 32 km journey that Laura Secord made during the War of 1812 to warn British forces of an impending American attack. The journey is divided into 5 stages with 6 waystations along the route.
(Niagara region).
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Now Available:
The NEW & updated edition of Summer Fun Guide is now available at ONroute centres, Yogurtys Froyo stores & other locations around Ontario, while supplies last. Pick up your FREE copy or email
[email protected] to have one mailed to you.
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Contest:
Do you have a favourite Ontario scenic train excursion, or a kids' train ride in Ontario? Tell us about it for a chance to win 2 passes for a round of mini golf at Dinosaur Valley Mini Golf! Contest closes May 31, 2015.
Survey:
Your opinion is important to us. Help make Summer Fun Guide even better!  Complete our survey and WIN!
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Coming In The Next Issue
6 Family Getaway Ideas


Have a question or comment?
Email the newsletter editor, Michelle at [email protected]

Looking for suggestions?
The best suggestions come from others who have been there and done that!
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Taking a snooze at the Wychwood Barns in Toronto. "Like” us on Facebook, and submit a photo of your spring adventures in Ontario this season!
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