May’s blooming beautifully…And don’t forget the fireworks!
Spring is warming up toward summer as April showers turn into May flowers… and more! ROAM takes you to a variety of events across the province that will definitely help you spring into summer! And of course, it’s also our first unofficial long weekend of summer.
Tip toe through the nation’s capital
Ottawa’s blossoming with pride with its internationally acclaimed Canadian Tulip Festival returning for its 60th year. The event is a one of Canada’s best known with over three million tulips and 500,000 admirers expected. Most events will take place throughout popular areas of the downtown core running until May 21. Visit tulipfestival.ca/site/home/en
Catch the blooms at Hamilton’s Royal Botanical Gardens. And as a special treat for moms, book your spots at the RBG’s Mother’s Day Brunch. Visit rbg.ca
A forest full of books
Canada’s largest children’s literary event, Forest of Reading® Festival of Trees™ is back in the big city with two days of author signings, awards, workshops and enticing activities that explore the bond of shared reading. Events take place at the Toronto Harbourfront Centre, and sell out quickly. For further information and ticket sales please visit readings.org/?q=weekly/forest_of_reading_festival_of_trees
Fort Henry adds a modern touch
Fort Henry in Kingston opens its newest attraction, The Discovery Centre a 10 000-square-foot addition housing touch-screen interactive activities, a new café and shop along with a 2,200 square foot Great Hall. Throughout the long weekend the Discovery Centre will feature a Multicultural Marketplace, highlighting some of the best food Kingston has to offer, along with traditional steam engines, guided tours and the Muster Parade! forthenry.com/index.cfm/en/home/
A rare bloom indeed – five metres across!
Sometime in May
Tending to one of the most captivating floral specimens, the Niagara Parks Commission and the Floral Showhouse is home to two rare bloomings of Amorphophallus titanum, or Titan Arum, during May 2012. This floral giantess is native to the rainforests of Sumatra an island in western Indonesia, and can grow up to six meters in height and five meters across. Until 1989 only 21 flowerings of this rare species occurred in botanical greenhouses worldwide. The first bloom is finished, but a second is expect this month. http://blog.niagaraparks.com/news/worlds-tallest-flower-growing-at-niagara-parks/
Blue Mountain challenges
Peak-to-Peak Challenge, May 12
Whether you’re seasoned hikers or an eager family of beginners, the Escarpment Challenge in Collingwood is bound to pique your interest. From the full 26 km, peak-to-peak challenge to the more modest 6.5 km cave venture, there is an active adventure for every level of athlete over the Mother’s Day weekend. This is a great way for families to discover this northern section of the Niagara Escarpment and what this diverse ecosystem has to offer. http://www.peaktopeakhike.com/index.html/
Fresh local produce is on the way!
April’s showers have come to an end and for local farmers May marks the beginning of a new season of fresh produce. One of Canada’s oldest, the Cambridge Farmers Market, was founded in 1830 and attracts vendors from just 100 kilometres or less from the region. Cambridge opens May 9 and runs through Oct. 3, providing families with a range of fresh-cut meats, poultry, cheeses, produce and traditional arts and crafts. To find a farmers market in your region please visit farmersmarketsontario.com/.
Fireworks! It must be the May Two-Four Weekend!
The Victoria Day weekend, affectionately known as the ‘May two-four”, is our unofficial kick-off to summer. Ottawa, Toronto and Hamilton are known for some of the most impressive and recognized Victoria Day fireworks shows, but will be an array of events in whatever region you hail from. Check with your local municipality for details.