Ottawa Parent & Child Expo
When: April 16-17, 2016
Where: Nepean Sportsplex, 1701 Woodroffe Ave.
What: Gather the kids and head to the family-friendly Nepean Sportsplex (Entrance 4) for a weekend of family fun and information at Ottawa’s largest parenting show. Parents will find 130 of their favourite Ottawa exhibitors offering important parenting information, and kids will find the beloved Dora and Diego and Teletubbies characters, live music by the Mini Pop Kids, JoJo, and Triple Trouble. Discover friendly mascots to hug, magic, robotics, and many other activities that focus on fun, learning and being healthy and active, including fitness demonstrations, face painting, arts and crafts, a reading corner and much more. An exciting family event where you and your children can play, learn, and explore – and it’s affordable, at just $12 for a family of four. Free parking.
Ontario Welsh Festival
When: April 22-24, 2016
Where: Various locations in Ottawa
What: During this weekend celebration of Welsh heritage, music and culture, your family can enjoy a renowned Welsh choir and the Three Welsh tenors, take part in singing events, a variety of children’s activities, traditional noson lawen (Welsh phrase for a party with music), harp-playing seminars, and much more.
Ottawa Grassroots Festival
When: April 21-24, 2016
Where: The Southminster United Church, 15 Aylmer Ave.
What: An annual family-oriented celebration of folk music, dance, and spoken word, with evening performances and daily workshops, sing-alongs and folk dancing.
Delicious family fun at the sugar bush
When: Until end of April 2016 (weather permitting)
Where: One of the Ottawa area’s many sugar bushes (see website for list)
What: Bring the family for a fun-filled day of sleigh rides, savour the classic maple taffy on snow, enjoy interpretive walking trails, hearty meals with the sweet, sweet taste of real maple syrup, and much more.
Thomas & Friends – Explore the Rails
When: Until May 1, 2016
Where: Canadian Children’s Museum, inside the Canadian Museum of History, 100 Laurier St., Gatineau
What: All aboard! The wildly popular tank engine comes to the Canadian Children’sMuseum with an exciting exhibition that encourages kids to learn about science, technology, engineering and math through play. Developed by the Minnesota Children’s Museum and based on the acclaimed book and TV series, the exhibit will feature a kid-sized, climbable Thomas the Tank Engine, an enormous hands-on Island of Sodor toy railway, and a special Tot Spot for the youngest visitors. In the Sodor Steamworks, children dress up as train conductors while teaming up to fix an engine and to load cargo. Parents and children will enjoy discovering Thomas the Tank Engine’s storied history in a fun-filled outing.
When: May 1-8, 2016
Where: Ottawa City Hall, Marion Dewar Plaza
What: Featuring 30 Poutiners and foodie vendors offering the best in traditional, exotic and extreme poutine from around the world.
The King of Poutine will be crowned by local chefs, celebrities and poutine fans. New this year: a World of Poutine Pass, with discounts on poutine, two-for-one deals, 20-per-cent off PoutineFest swag, special invites, contests, giveaways and more, plus a world record attempt for the “biggest” poutine ever. Proceeds from tickets will support Ottawa food shelters.
When: May 6-14, 2016
Where: Throughout the Hintonburg neighbourhood
What: A nine-day festival, featuring local artists, designers, musicians and businesses, to showcase what makes the Wellington West area so special, with events throughout the neighbourhood and a closing party on May 14 with food, music, art and children’s activities at Somerset Square.
Les Petits Ballets’ Cinderella
When: May 7, 1 p.m. & 7 p.m.
Where: Centrepointe Theatres, Ben Franklin Place, 101 Centrepointe Dr.
What: Ottawa’s Performing Ballet School, Les Petits Ballets, with professional guest dancers, brings the adventures of Cinderella to the stage in its unique interpretation of the popular and much-loved children’s fairy tale. A wonderful opportunity to introduce your family to theatre and dance. The colourful scenery, moving sets and lively music are sure to capture the attention of young and old alike.
Ottawa Family Cinema
When: Until the end of May 2016
Where: Notre Dame High School, 710 Broadview Ave.
What: See Kung Fu Panda 3, Oklahoma, Zootopia, Star Wars, The Little Prince and many more great family movies weekly, plus cartoon and door prizes at every show! The cinema has a big Cinemascope screen, comfortable seating, and 2D & 3D Digital theatre sound! Operates on weekends and all proceeds beyond operating costs are directed back to the community.
Canadian Tulip Festival
When: May 12-23, 2016
Where: Various locations in Ottawa and Gatineau
What: This annual world-famous festival celebrates Ottawa’s love affair with the tulip, with a million tulips blooming in public areas, including 300,000 blooms in Commissioners Park near Dows Lake. The new Aberdeen Tulip Pavilion at Lansdowne Park features international music, dance, inspirational art and children’s programs. And check out the first-ever indoor Tulip & Sculpture Garden.
Catch an Ottawa Champions baseball game
When: May 19 to Sept. 5, 2016 (check schedule)
Where: Ottawa Baseball Stadium, 300 Coventry Rd.
What: Take your family out to the ball game! The Champions will play 54 home games in the Can-Am League.
Great Glebe Garage Sale
When: May 28, 2016
Where: The Glebe neighbourhood
What: Many individual garage sales combine to make one, hotly-anticipated giant neighbourhood event. Spend the day and take a leisurely walk around this lovely neighbourhood, shopping and sifting through items with the family. You never know what treasures you’ll find!