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What’s Hot Across Canada in February


A beard-growing contest, pea soup competition, snow sculpture gallery and live entertainment are just some of the fun-filled activities featured at Festival Du Voyageur. The winter fest celebrates Manitoba’s French-Canadian roots.

Canadian Rockies

Photo-based works take centre stage at Banff’s Whyte Museum as part of the Exposure 2011 photography festival, Feb 5 – Apr 4. Exhibits include Marko Modic: Alchemy that features unique colourful montages made by layering photographs and Through the Lens student photos from the 14th year of the Museum’s outreach program that fosters the creative experience with local youths.


Dine Out Vancouver is on until Feb 6. Enjoy three-course, prix fixe meals—and optional wine pairings—for $18, $28 and $38 at over 200 of the city’s best restaurants. Celebrate Chinese New Year with fireworks, a parade, markets, feasts and traditional dances as the year of the rabbit is ushered in on Feb 3.

Head to Whistler for a week-long gay-pride celebration during the annual WinterPride (to Feb 6). Activities range from dances, comedy shows and martini parties to snowmobile tours, snowboarding and skiing.


Weather permitting on Feb 20, the Calgary Flames look to the battle the Montreal Canadiens in the return of the NHL’s Heritage Classic hockey match, played on an outdoor rink at McMahon Stadium, regular home of the Calgary Stampeders football Squad.


Victoria’s “foodie favourite” event, Dine Around and Stay in Town, returns to local restaurants Feb 17 – Mar 6. Enjoy three-course menus for $20, $30, $40 per person, paired with BC VQA wine suggestions. New this year are a number of celiac-friendly menus.


As February frosts over, head inside to experience the heartwarming story of a working-class British boy who becomes a ballerina. Billy Elliot the Musical brings the inspirational 2000 film to Toronto’s Canon Theatre with exuberant dancing and memorable songs by Elton John. If the play is not your thing,  get your motor running at the Canadian International Auto Show, from Feb 18 – 27. This huge expo features the latest and greatest vehicular innovations from the world’s biggest carmakers (Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 255 Front St W, 416-585-3660).


The biggest multi-sport event in Nova Scotian history, the 2011 Canada Games are the must-see event in Halifax this month. Venues around the city host competitions in hockey, ringette, skiing, boxing, judo, swimming and dozens of other sports. One of the most popular venues is sure to be the speedskating oval on Halifax Common, where all races are free for spectators.


Birkenbeiner Ski Festival is Canada’s largest classical-format cross-country ski festival that honours the spirit of the Norwegian Birkebeiner legend. It runs Feb 11 -12. In Legally Blonde: The Musical, Elle Woods, a flighty sorority star whose boyfriend can’t take her seriously, turns into a respectable Harvard Law graduate and proves to naysayers that you can still be true to yourself and rise to the top. Based on the smash hit movie, the Broadway Across Canada musical makes a stop in Edmonton for one week only, Feb 22 – 27.


Winterlude, Ottawa’s annual outdoor festival, draws droves of people to the city every year. From Feb 4 – 21, this seasonal celebration offers skating on the world’s longest naturally frozen rink, finely crafted ice sculptures by international artists, an elaborate snow playground for families, and plenty of other fantastic outings.

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