Muskoka’s boats are in the water and the ribs are in the smokers in Gravenhurst
JULY 26 TO 28 The most popular lakeside attraction in Gravenhurst floods with locals and visitors as the Muskoka In-Water Boat and Cottage Show and Ribfest returns. Featuring vessels from the biggest names in boating plus all manner of cottage-related exhibitors, it’s a not-to-be-missed event for anyone looking to upgrade their living space or watercraft. And don’t forget to try the mouthwatering meats from some of Ontario’s top rib masters. Muskoka Wharf, free admission; call 647-344-6700 or check out muskokashows.com for more information.
Bala’s Museum participates in this year’s Doors Open Muskoka festivities
JUNE 15 & 16 Visitors are invited to literally walk through history during this season’s Doors Open festivities, a province-wide program designed to introduce new generations to the built heritage of various communities. On June 15, explore Gravenhurst sites like its turn-of-the-century Opera House; on June 16, venture to Bala and Port Carling for Victorian-era architecture and quaint attractions such as Bala’s Museum with Memories of Lucy Maud Montgomery. Various venues, free; visit doorsopenontario.on.ca for further details.
EACH WEEK THROUGHOUT THE SUMMER, WHERE MUSKOKA IS YOUR ONE-STOP SHOP FOR INFORMATION ON ALL THE GREAT EVENTS AND THINGS TO DO IN MUSKOKA!
JUNE 5 Spend an afternoon at Huntsville’s River Mill Park and check out the colourful canoe-paddle art created by Huntsville High School’s youth in transition.
JUNE 7 Listen in wonder as Louisiana slide-guitar virtuoso Sonny Landreth performs classic tracks and songs from his latest album at Peter’s Players.
JUNE 7 & 8 Parry Sound’s Stockey Centre hosts a toe-tappin’, head-noddin’ good time thanks to its two-day Rock Fest. Friday night is headlined by “Signs” singers the Five Man Electrical Band, while Saturday sees performances by Eagles tribute band Hotel California and others.
JUNE 8 Classic rock fans may want to make a return trip to Peter’s Players: the Gravenhurst venue’s second show in as many days features Yardbirds founding member Jim McCarty and his blues- and classical-influenced band.
JUNE 8 & 9 Hit the road this weekend—not just to enjoy the region’s natural scenery, but also to take in the excellent visuals by participants in the annual Muskoka Lakes Spring Art Tour.
The West Parry Sound District Museum hosts a documentary screening this week
Be entertained while enhancing your knowledge of the world around you. This Tuesday evening, the West Parry Sound District Museum‘s “Films That Make You Think” screening series continues with the documentary Vanishing of the Bees, which examines the possible causes and consequences of Colony Collapse Disorder.
A convention for all things canine awaits you in Huntsville from Friday to Sunday. The Cottage Dog Show features all kinds of vendors offering pooch paraphernalia, plus dog activities and contests, and a performance by YouTube Jesse, a Jack Russell Terrier that’s alleged to know 1,000 tricks.
Cheer on the paddlers as they stroke through the waters of Georgian Bay at Parry Sound’s Dragon Boat Festival. The day-long event takes place this Saturday at Waubuno Beach. In addition to high-energy boating heats, the event promises children’s activities, live music, food and more.
Get up close and personal with veteran Canadian comedian Scott Thompson—the Kids in the Hall member brings his cerebral, off-beat brand of humour to the Peter’s Players stage on Saturday night, as part of the popular Cottage Country Comedy Festival.
Celebrate Father’s Day weekend with your “old man” and a herd of classic and specialty cars, as the Muskoka region plays host to a pair of automotive events. The Gravenhurst Antique and Classic Car Show rolls into Gull Lake Park on Saturday; the Bracebridge Father’s Day Car Show is sure to get your motor running on Sunday.
Pick a pepper (and other fresh produce) at Muskoka's farmers' markets
Our guide to cottage-country events and activities has returned for another summer! Check back every Monday for more timely ideas for family fun.
Support Ontario growers and get some fresh ingredients for this week’s breakfasts, lunches and dinners at a pair of farmers’ markets that are now in full swing. This Wednesday (and all subsequent Wednesday throughout the summer) the Gravenhurst Farmers’ Market operates from from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Muskoka Wharf, while the Bracebridge Farmers’ Market runs on Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Memorial Park.
Stretch out on a blanket at Bracebridge’s Memorial Park bandshell and listen to the acoustic folk sounds of Neil Hutchison. Influenced by the likes of Gordon Lightfoot and Ian Tyson, Hutchison takes the stage this Thursday at 7 p.m.
Grab your motorcycle boots and leather jacket and head on down to the Kee to Bala. Blues singer and guitarist George Thorogood—with his longtime band, The Destroyers—rocks the joint on Saturday, with hits like “Bad to the Bone” and more.
Drive around the region this Saturday and Sunday and take in not only the exceptional natural scenery, but also some great artistic visuals. This year’s Muskoka Lakes Spring Art Tour allows you to visit the studios of 11 top cottage-country artists in Bracebridge, Bala, Port Carling and elsewhere.
The local food movement just keeps creeping ever closer to home; one of the latest trends is to keep a chicken or two right in your own backyard (depending on municipal bylaws, of course). If you’re interested in learning more, regional culinary association Savour Muskoka hosts a poultry workshop on Sunday at Severn Sunset Eco Farm in Severn Bridge, where participants will find out some of the ins and outs of working with chickens, ducks and turkeys.
By CHRIS RYALL
View Muskoka Trails: Pathways to Fresh Air and Fun in a larger map
Nature takes centre stage in Muskoka with daily performances by 250 species of birds, 50 types of mammals and 25 species of amphibians. Turn off the iPod and open your ears to Muskoka’s natural sounds by hiking, biking, canoeing and kayaking through the region National Geographic Traveler selected selected as one of the top 20 “Best Trips of the World” for 2012. No gas required and no stress allowed.
Here, we’ve mapped some of our favourite trails for you to explore (zoom in close to see all the smaller trails).
1. Major Canadian talent makes the trip to Muskoka this week, as acclaimed singer-songwriter Ron Sexsmith takes the stage for two shows at Peter’s Place Live on July 23 and 24.
2. Check out the latest pleasure crafts and cottage accessories from July 22 to 24, as Gravenhurst’s Muskoka Wharf hosts the annual In-Water Boat and Cottage Show. If all that salivating (at boats) makes you actually hungry, you’re in luck, the Muskoka Cottage Brewery lounge, also on-site, offers a filling Ribfest, too. (more…)
Steven Page plays the Huntsville Festival of the Arts this week
1. The Huntsville Festival of the Arts has a big week. Former Barenaked Ladies frontman Steven Page is sure to bring the house down when he plays the Algonquin Theatre on July 15. On July 17, the ever-popular Rod Beattie brings his curmudgeonly character Walt Wingfield to town in Wingfield’s Folly.
2. Parry Sound’s biggest annual event kicks off on July 15 as the Festival of the Sound hosts a “piano gala” featuring music by Debussy, Gershwin, Beethoven and more. Four additional concerts and two lectures round out the weekend’s programming. (more…)
photo by Meddygarnet
The Canada Day long weekend brings much excitement to the Muskoka region!
1. Friday, July 1 offers sure cause for celebration in Huntsville, which hosts a bevy of Canada Day activities from morning to night. Among the attractions, Muskoka Heritage Place hosts a strawberry social beginning at 10 a.m. And don’t miss the fireworks display over Hunters Bay, starting at dusk.
2. Also on July 1 (and running to July 3) is the annual Bala Antique and Nostalgia Show, which takes place at Bala Arena. More than 40 vendors set up shop at this event, with everything from vintage country furniture to estate jewellery and collectibles. (more…)
JUNE 19 TO AUGUST 14, 2011 Bring your own seat and settle in at Gravenhurst’s Gull Lake Park for Music on the Barge. Watch the sun set over the waterfront stage while a diverse roster of bands serenades audiences every Sunday evening. Hear the classic sounds of the Muskoka Concert Band and Big Band on opening night, June 19. Tributes to Shania Twain (July 10), The Eagles (July 17), and Johnny Cash and Tammy Wynette (August 7) make for memorable and melodious nights, too. Concerts start at 7:30 p.m., free; call 705-687-3412 or visit here for more information.
The candy cane fountains at Santa's Village
1. There’s only six months until Christmas! See how Saint Nick’s preparing for his 2011 toy delivery—or perhaps he’s still relaxing in the Muskoka sun—by visiting Santa’s Village, where kids can ride the Christmas ball ferris wheel, cool off under candy cane showers, get crafty in the elves’ workshop and more.
2. Witness the Kee to Bala be transformed into the “dogg pound” as legendary rapper Snoop Dogg enlivens cottage country with his distinctly brand of West Coast hip hop on June 17.
3. If you can handle the black flies and mosquitoes—and really, if you’re in Muskoka, that should be a given—then consider planning a camping trip to really experience the Canadian Shield. Well-known retailers like Algonquin Outfitters and Muskoka Outfitters can equip you with all the latest outdoorsy gear. (more…)
Laugh along with Robin Duke and the rest of the "Women Fully Clothed"
1. The delightful dames of Women Fully Clothed—Robin Duke, Jayne Eastwood, Kathryn Greenwood and Teresa Pavlinek—bring their humorous yet affecting stories to cottage country. See their latest show, Older and Hotter, on June 10 at the Gravenhurst Opera House.
2. View and purchase the works of 20 fine artists and craftspeople while partaking in the annual Muskoka Lakes Spring Art Tour on June 11 and 12. This self-directed jaunt takes art lovers to the studios and galleries of creators in Bracebridge, Bala, Port Carling and more. Click here for a map. (more…)