Great Family Fun Events

family-events-summer2014Ottawa Farmers’ Market

When: Until Nov. 16, Sundays
Where: Brewer Park
What: Take a leisurely family outing to shop and savour premium quality, Ottawa-area fruits, vegetables, meats, flowers and crafts.

Wilderness Tours, Ottawa City Adventures

When: May 31-Oct. 13
Where: Britannia Beach
What: Float down the Ottawa River from Britannia Beach and hop off near the Canadian War Museum on this 3.5-hour family-friendly whitewater rafting adventure. Fees: Start at $39 per person

Mont Cascades Resort and Waterpark

When: June 6-Sept. 1
Where: 448 Mont Cascades Rd., Cantley, Que.
What: World-class water rides, water play areas and full food and beverage services make Mont Cascades Resort and Waterpark a great place for the family to cool down and have fun this summer.

Father’s Day Antique Car Show

When: June 15, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Billings Estate National Historic Site
What: Featuring some of the coolest cars in town, this classic event lets you get up close and personal with awesome examples of beautifully preserved automotive history – including its own 1959 Cadillac. Family activities include building simple machines and batteries, making your own circuits, and playing a circuitry game.
Fees: $6 person, $10 pair, $16 family

Father’s Day at the Farm

When: June 15, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Canada Agriculture & Food Museum, 861 Prince of Wales Dr., between the traffic circle and Baseline Road
What: Bring Dad to the Canada Agriculture and Food Museum for the day! Meet the farm dads and learn why these animals are special, not just on Father’s Day, but all year round. All fathers enter free today.

Italian Week Ottawa

When: June 5-15
Where: Preston Street
What: Come to Little Italy, dance under the stars, and share in gastronomic delights highlighting the delicious, varied regional cuisine of Italy. Cruise along the Ottawa River and see historical sites, attend the St. Anthony’s Church procession, and enjoy beautiful fireworks.

Ottawa Ribfest

When: June 18-22, starts at 11 a.m. daily
Where: Sparks Street Mall
What: Bring the family to sample some of the best barbecue chicken and ribs you’ll ever taste, while “ribbers” from all over North America vie for top marks. With live entertainment, and more.

Summer Solstice Aboriginal Arts Festival

When: June 20-22
Where: Vincent Massey Park
What: In honour of National Aboriginal Day, see some of Canada’s best Aboriginal talent, featuring music, family programming and more. With a Competition Pow Wow, fashion show, music workshops and an Education Day, the 2014 Festival promises to be better than ever.

Changing the Guard

When: June 24-Aug. 23, daily (weather permitting), 10 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
Where: Parliament Hill
What: A Canadian tradition at its most colourful! The Ceremonial Guard of the Canadian Forces brings stirring military drill and music to Parliament Hill. Come at 9:45 a.m. to learn more about the ceremony.

RCMP Sunset Ceremonies

When: June 25-29, nightly from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Where: RCMP Musical Ride Centre, 1 Sandridge Rd.
What: Featuring the world famous Musical Ride, Equestrian Abilities Show, Mounted Arms Display, RCMP/Ottawa Police Service Pipes and Drums and Dancers, the Central Band of the Canadian Forces, rescue dogs from the Ottawa Valley Search & Rescue Dog Association, as well as a kids zone that includes the DND kids obstacle course, a petting zoo, face painting and much more.
Fees: Free

Bytown Museum: Let Us Entertain You!

When: July 3-31, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Bytown Museum, 1 Canal Lane, at the Rideau Canal locks between Parliament Hill and the Château Laurier hotel
What: Enjoy free entertainment at the museum on Thursday nights! Explore Ottawa’s history through storytelling, musicians, actors and much more.

Torchlight Shakespeare Festival

When:July 3-Aug. 16 (except Sundays)
Where: Various Ottawa parks
What: Professional Shakespeare company
A Company of Fools presents As You Like It. This outdoor production tours a different park each night of the week.
Fees: By donation (pass the hat).

Monday Night Movies at the Museum

When: July 7-Sept. 1
Where: Bytown Museum, 1 Canal Lane, at the Rideau Canal locks between Parliament Hill and the Château Laurier hotel
What: Escape the heat, grab some popcorn and explore the First World War and Canada’s history through cinema! Visit the museum website for film selection.

Osgoode Medieval Festival

When: July 12-13
Where: 5673 Osgoode Main Street
What: Enter the Kingdom of Osgoode to attend the seventh annual festival, where the family can enjoy a medieval market, medieval feast, a creative arts competition and more!
Fees: Day admission: $6 per person, weekendnpass: $10 per person, family package: $30 (2 adults and 4 children), children under 4 free


When: July 18-Oct. 31
Where: Lansdowne Park
What: Take in nine exciting Canadian Football League home games and enjoy Ottawa’s brand new team in a brand new stadium. Cheer loudly for the REDBLACKS!

Ice Cream Festival

When: July 20, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Where: Canada Agriculture & Food Museum, 861 Prince of Wales Dr., between the traffic circle and Baseline Road
What: Explore the journey from cow to cone on National Ice Cream Day and get the scoop on ice cream and dairying.
Fees: Included with museum admission

Glengarry Highland Games

When: Aug.1-2
Where: Maxville, Ont., an hour east of Ottawa just off Hwy. 417, 30 minutes north of the Canada/U.S. border crossing at Cornwall
What: Bring the family for two jam-packed days of events, activities, sights and sounds. Witness traditional Scottish events, with more than 60 pipe bands, 200 Highland dancers, sports, pageantry and tradition.
Fees: General admission $20, children under 12 free

Ottawa Busker Festival

When: Aug. 1-4
Where: Sparks Street Mall
What: Enjoy some very unorthodox entertainment by street performers from around the world. There’s something for the whole family, including acrobats, contortionists, hula-hoopers, yo-yos, musicians, comedian escape acts, magicians, jugglers and more!
Fees: Free admission, donations appreciated.

Sound of Light / Les grands Feux

When: Aug. 2-16, Wednesdays & Saturdays
Where: Canadian Museum of History (formerly Canadian Museum of Civilization), 100 Rue Laurier, Gatineau
What: Experience fireworks as never before during five unforgettable evenings of international fireworks synchronized to an original soundtrack, with some of the very best fireworks experts demonstrating their skills in this explosive battle of light and sound.

Celebrate Colonel By Day

When: Aug. 4
Where: Bytown Museum, 1 Canal Lane, at the Rideau Canal locks between Parliament Hill and the Château Laurier hotel
What: Celebrate the holiday named for Ottawa’s founding father with live music, dancing, heritage demonstrators, costumed characters, games and face painting for kids. Heritage events and programming provided onsite by the Council of Heritage Organization of Ottawa.

Capital Fair

When: Aug. 15-24
Where: Rideau Carleton Raceway
What: Bring the family to check out Ottawa’s new 10-day fair with music, food, midway rides, animals and monster truck shows!

Capital Pride Festival

When: Aug. 18-24
Where: Various locations
What: Ottawa’s gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, two-spirited and questioning communities will be jumping on the pride wagon to celebrate during this annual festival, with events for everyone. Parade and show on Sunday, Aug. 24.

Puppets Up! International Puppet Festival

When: Aug. 8-10
Where: Various venues, downtown Almonte
What: An international puppet festival for families and the young at heart! Great entertainment for families with children of all ages.
Fees: Rates vary for single day children/adult passes, and weekend passes. See website.

Gatineau Hot Air Balloon Festival

When: Aug. 28-Sept. 1
Where: Parc de La Baie, Gatineau
What: Come to Canada’s largest balloon festival, where beautiful hot air balloons fill the Gatineau sky and a number of exciting shows and family activities take place.