Where to Celebrate Ontario Parks’ 125 Years Up North

Where to Celebrate Ontario Parks 125th Birthday blog

Ontario’s provincial parks are turning 125 in 2018. It all started in 1893 with the creation of Canada’s first provincial park, Algonquin. What most consider one of most impressive and beautiful parks in all the world. Flora to fauna Ontario Parks are one of the best multi location ‘attractions’ our province offers.

Today, Ontario Parks protects 340 provincial parks, which encompasses just under 8% of Ontario, an area larger than Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island combined.

Ontario Parks is celebrating the anniversary all year with special events, cultural heritage programs, stewardship activities, a concert series, and a series of legacy projects. 

In 125 years only a few changes are visible, what is important is that the same natural beauty of Ontario’s outdoors remains. Those who take care of, manage and run Ontario Parks have done a wonderful job in conservation, care, maintenance and programming. Visiting an Ontario Park is a tradition for many campers, hikers and nature lovers alike. Ontario Parks are part of history and the nation’s. 

If you are new to the province, Ontario’s impressive beautiful landscape is exactly the place to find a deep connection to nature, and come summer, the lakes are the place to be!

We have assembled a list (we love lists here at 400eleven.com!) of the ‘up north’ area events we think look super fun in the areas we promote. The events take place starting in the summer and some run until late fall. These are just some of many of the events taking place across Ontario.

MacGregor Point
Event Name: David Archibald Concert 
Date: July 10, 2018 to July 10, 2018
Location: Visitor Centre – Campfire Circle
Event Type: 
Description:

Come enjoy Ontario Parks’ favourite singer/songwriter, David Archibald for his “Park Songs!” show! An upbeat musical romp through the natural and cultural history of our tremendous provincial parks. Songs include: Rocks of Tobermory, We Got the Rock!, Ballad of Pirate Bill, Captain John Munroe and more. 


Grundy Lake
Event Name: David Archibald Concert
Date: July 15, 2018 to July 15, 2018
Location: Park Amphitheatre
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of Ontario Parks’ 125th Anniversary, David Archibald has written five brand new songs that he will be performing during his 2018 summer tour. Don’t miss this fun, interactive concert that celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario! Join us at the Amphitheatre at 7:30 PM.


Neys
Event Name: Healthy Parks Healthy People Day
Date: July 20, 2018 to July 20, 2018
Event Type: 
Description:

Paint yourself into the Ontario Parks’ 125th celebration picture this summer! Join an interpretive naturalist for a workshop using a ‘tree cookie’ cross section as your canvas. Capture an anniversary memory and share your special connection to Ontario Parks in the tradition of Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven! Discover your inner artist- no experience necessary. After a day of painting and making memories, join park staff for a campfire, games, and an outdoor gallery featuring your masterpiece!


Sleeping Giant
Event Name: Healthy Parks Healthy People
Date: July 20, 2018 to July 20, 2018
Location: Entire Park
Event Type: 
Description:

Ontario’s provincial parks play a vital role in the protection of our natural environment, but did you know that spending time in nature is good for your health too? Join us at our third annual Healthy Parks Healthy People celebration on July 20th, 2018 to learn about and celebrate the link between healthy parks and healthy people. During this event there will be no charge for day use entry to any provincial park in Ontario


Lake Superior
Event Name: Concert by David Archibald
Date: July 20, 2018 to July 20, 2018
Location: Agawa Bay Amphitheatre
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of Ontario Parks’ 125th Anniversary, David Archibald has written five brand new songs that he will be performing during his 2018 summer tour. Don’t miss this fun, interactive concert that celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario!


Balsam Lake
Event Name: Healthy Parks, Healthy People FREE DAY USE!
Date: July 20, 2018 to July 20, 2018
Location: Balsam Lake PP
Event Type: 
Description:

Do you ever wonder why you feel so great after a walk in the woods or a bike ride along your favourite path? Or how much better you feel just looking at the trees outside your window?  Spending time with nature actually helps us live happier, healthier, longer lives. Ontario Parks invites you to celebrate the many health benefits of spending time in nature on July 20, 2017. All operating provincial parks are waiving day-use fees and hosting special events and activities that encourage people to visit parks and be active.

Planting Blitz 9:30am – Volunteer to help plant trees and create wildlife habitat along with our Park Biologist and our Natural Heritage Education team.

Go Wild for Art 1:30pm – Celebrate Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary by creating your own unique piece of art.  All supplies provided, just bring your creativity and imagination!

Beach Yoga 7pm – Time to unwind in nature with some relaxing and rejuvenating yoga overlooking the lake. Bring a yoga mat or towel and a water bottle.


Marten River
Event Name: Lumberjack Days
Date: July 21, 2018 to July 22, 2018
Location: Logging Camp
Event Type: 
Description:

You don’t want to miss our annual Lumberjack Days. On Saturday, join us for various competitions of lumberjack skills, visit the “Winter Camp” horse-logging camp and museum with its working blacksmith shop. Enjoy traditional music by the Wakami Wailers for shorts sets through the afternoon on the hour, and a concert in the evening. The Wailers provided the soundtrack to our award-winning film “The Winter Camp”, set in Marten River. Have fun watching lumberjack demonstrations.  Buy a traditional logger’s bean lunch on Saturday.  


Awenda
Event Name: Spirit Night: Awenda in Time
Date: July 28, 2018 to July 28, 2018
Location: 1st Beach; Meet in beach parking area D.
Event Type: 
Description:

Celebrate Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary at Awenda with a spectacular Georgian Bay beach sunset and some colourful characters and stories to match!


Algonquin
Event Name: Wakami Wailers Concert
Date: July 29, 2018 to July 29, 2018
Location: Algonquin Outdoor Theatre
Event Type: Natural and Cultural History Event
Description:

The award winning Wakami Wailers are scheduled to play an open air concert at Algonquin Park’s Outdoor Theatre. Listen to the music of the Wakami Wailers. The Ontario-based Wakami Wailers will get your toes tapping through lively music sharing Canada’s logging history, park and protected areas, plus much more. Join the Wailers for a fun-filled evening of entertaining stories and songs from their popular releases – The Last of the White Pine Loggers, Waltz With the Woods, and River Through the Pines. This concert is brought to you by The Friends of Algonquin Park as one of summer’s Special Events. Admission to this event is a minimum donation of $2.00 per person. Concert begins at 7:00pm.


Sleeping Giant
Event Name: Musical evening with David Archibald
Date: August 3, 2018 to August 3, 2018
Location: Marie Louise Lake Campground, Outdoor theatre, 8:00 pm Rain alternate: Visitor Centre, Indoor Amphitheatre
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of Ontario Parks’ 125th Anniversary, David Archibald has written five brand new songs that he will be performing during his 2018 summer tour. Don’t miss this fun, interactive concert that celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario!


Sibbald Point
Event Name: David Archibald Concert
Date: August 17, 2018 to August 17, 2018
Location: Sibbald Point Provincial Park Amphitheatre 
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of Ontario Parks’ 125th Anniversary, David Archibald has written five brand new songs that he will be performing during his 2018 summer tour. Don’t miss this fun, interactive concert that celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario!

Friday August 17th at 7:00pm

Day use fees apply.


Wasaga Beach
Event Name: Wasaga Under Siege
Date: August 18, 2018 to August 19, 2018
Location: Nancy Island Historic Site
Event Type: 
Description:

Join us as we celebrate the 90th anniversary of Nancy Island Historic Site with muskets, cannons, and more at our annual re-enactment!  Additional celebrations will take place to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Ontario Parks, the sinking of the H.M.S. Nancy on August 14th, 1814, and 90 years as Nancy Island Historic Site.

Stay tuned for information or visit www.wasagabeachpark.com


Algonquin
Event Name: OP125 Time Capsule Event
Date: August 22, 2018 to August 22, 2018
Location: Algonquin Visitor Centre
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of the 125th birthday of Ontario Parks, we will be hosting a time capsule event here in Algonquin Provincial Park, the first park in the provincial park system.  The event begins at 1PM and will include live music, interactive booths, and more.  Check out this park blog for more info: http://www.ontarioparks.com/parksblog/op125-algonquin-time-capsule/ 


Algonquin
Event Name: David Archibald-The Happiest Camper in Ontario Concert Tour
Date: August 22, 2018 to August 22, 2018
Location: Algonquin Outdoor Theatre (km35.4 on Highway 60)
Event Type: 
Description:

 Join us August 22nd at 7PM for a concert by David Archibald.  David has written and performed for Sesame Street and Mr. Dressup and his musicals have been performed across the country.  In honour of Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary, David is performing a 30-park tour performing some of his classics as well as 5 brand new songs!  http://www.ontarioparks.com/parksblog/david-archibalds-the-happiest-camper-in-ontario-concert-tour/ 


Bonnechere
Event Name: David Archibald in concert
Date: August 23, 2018 to August 23, 2018
Location: Davenport Centre
Event Type: 
Description:

Come join us at the Davenport Centre to hear the amazing David Archibald in concert! On Thursday, August 23rd he will be making a pit-stop at Bonnechere on his Ontario Parks tour in celebration of Ontario Parks 125th anniversary! It will not be a concert to miss! Concert begins at 7PM.


Restoule
Event Name: David Archibald Concert
Date: August 24, 2018 to August 24, 2018
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of Ontario Parks’ 125th Anniversary, David Archibald has written five brand new songs that he will be performing during his 2018 summer tour. Don’t miss this fun, interactive concert that celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario!


Murphys Point
Event Name: Evening Concert with David Archibald
Date: September 1, 2018 to September 1, 2018
Location: Amphitheatre – time to be confirmed.
Event Type: 
Description:

In celebration of Ontario Parks’ 125th Anniversary, David Archibald has written five brand new songs that he will be performing during his 2018 summer tour. Don’t miss this fun, interactive concert that celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario!


Algonquin
Event Name: Haunted Halloween Weekend
Date: October 26, 2018 to October 27, 2018
Location: Mew Lake Campground
Event Type: Seasonal Event
Description:

The fun begins on Friday night with Haunted Tales from the Camboose Shanty! On Saturday afternoon, join us at the Visitor Centre where a Park Naturalist will guide you through a collection of animal skeletons. Mew Lake Campground will feature pumpkin carving, campsite decorating and costume contests with awards given for many different categories!  Everyone is invited to participate in trick-or-treating among the campsites on Saturday night, and later, for a howling good time at the nearby Old Airfield with a wolf howl. Mew Lake Campground (km 30.6).


Ontario Parks 125th Anniversary logoHere are more helpful links to help plan a road trip day trip or overnight camping trip to an Ontario Park up north in Ontario. Great parks can be found near and far north starting from the city of Toronto.

Parks Locator (includes Ontario Parks Google Map): https://www.ontarioparks.com/park-locator

125 Years Promotional Landing Page: https://www.ontarioparks.com/op125

Online Reservations Page: https://www.ontarioparks.com/reservations

Social: Use #OP125 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ontarioparks/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ontarioparks/

The hardest decision you’ll have to make will be choosing which park to visit this year. Your favourite? Or something new? 

We wish Ontario Parks a very Happy Birthday! Thank you for all you do! 


Find more ways to explore and experience the natural and cultural heritage of Ontario, near and far north starting from Toronto.

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