Always a favourite among visitors, the gardens are in full bloom in Niagara-on-the-Lake. But there’s so much more happening in this historic enclave located on the southern shores of Lake Ontario. July and August are busy months here in Niagara-on-the-Lake so be sure to book your B&B or cottage rental early.
Daily performances at 2 and 8 p.m., except Mondays, continue to take centre stage at the Festival, Royal George and Courthouse theatres. If your schedule doesn’t include stage performances, then perhaps an hour-long backstage tour fits the bill. Tours take place at 11 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are just $10/person. Book tickets in advance or, if available, just prior to the tour.
The 202nd anniversary of the Battle of Fort George takes place on July 11 & 12, when re-enactors from all over North America recreate one of the pivotal events in Niagara during the War of 1812. Battle re-enactments are scheduled on both Saturday and Sunday, and a special sound and light show will take place Saturday evening. Call 905-468-6614 or visit pc.gc.ca/fortgeorge or friendsoffortgeorge.ca for information and tickets.
If you missed the above re-enactments, not to worry. Another event, the Second Annual Celtic Festival at Fort George, kicks off with a special concert by the critically acclaimed band, “The Tartan Terrors,” who will perform inside Fort George on Friday, July 24 from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $19. On Saturday, July 25, Fort George opens at 10 a.m. with a full day of music, dance and activities for the whole family. For information, call Fort George at 905-468-6614 or visit friendsoffortgeorge.ca.
Music, music, music:
Music Niagara 2015 Summer Festival swings into Niagara-on-the-Lake for five glorious weeks from July 11 to August 9. Tickets range from free performances in Simcoe Park to $59/person at indoor and outdoor venues. Whether you appreciate classical, jazz, swing or organ recitals, you’ll find something to your liking. In some cases, performances can be paired with high tea, intellectual debates or picnics. Concert locations include St. Mark’s Church on Byron Street, the Epicurean Bistro on Queen, Simcoe Park, Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery in St. David’s, Peller Estates Winery on John Street East, Niagara Oast House Brewers and the Shaw Festival Theatre. Tickets are on sale at www.musicniagara.org or www.shawfest.com, by phone at 1-800-511-7429, in person at the Shaw Festival Box Office or at the door 45 minutes before each performance. A Music Niagara Six Pack is available for $185 and student tickets are specially priced at $10 for college and university students and $5 for high-school and elementary students.
At NEOB Niagara, July 11 & 12 are all about lavender. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, enjoy culinary delights such as lavender root beer, lavender pizza, lavender lemonade, lavender shortbread and more. Roam through fields of lavender, pick your own lavender, tour the facility to see how essential oils are made. $5 gets you the Island Hopper Pass, which includes entrance to the festival, demos and tours, sampling of ice cream with lavender syrup, a NEOB botanical beverage, tickets to their garlic festival and $2 off u-pick lavender. For $15, your World Traveller Pass entitles you to all of the above plus additional tastings (10 products). This one’s an annual favourite with young and old alike.
All that jazz:
Starting July 23 with its Flagship Launch Event at Stratus Vineyards and featuring the finest Canadian and internationally acclaimed jazz musicians through July 26, the TD Niagara Jazz Festival is a new, cutting-edge, four-day celebration of jazz at indoor and outdoor venues in the heart of Niagara’s stunning wine country. Tickets and weekend passes can be purchased online or in person at the Chamber of Commerce in Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Culture and History:
The Niagara Historical Society & Museum chronicles the history of Niagara-on-the-Lake from its earliest inhabitants to the present day. Located at 43 Castlereigh, the museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you’re interested in our history, consider taking a walking tour of Niagara-on-the-Lake. Tours meet at the gazebo in Queen’s Royal Park at 11 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays and end at the Niagara Historical Museum. Tickets are $10/person and include museum admission.
If you’re up for scary encounters, Ghost Tours at Fort George invite you to step inside Fort George after dark to learn about its history and haunting during a candlelight walk. Tours gather in the parking lot of Fort George; just look for black capes and lanterns. Tours happen Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. Tickets cost $13/adult and $7/child under 13 and can be purchased from the guide at the time of the tour.
Located in Queenston and open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the RiverBrink Art Museum features a variety of exhibits that include:
• Cartooons, caricatures and satirical prints
• Avant la lettre: Canadian landscape before the group
• The Group of Seven Project: Arthur Lismer: the artist as teacher
• Marc Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté
• Josh Silburt: Artist in turbulent times
Other historic sites worth visiting in and around Niagara-on-the-Lake include:
• Fort Mississauga located on the grounds of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Golf Club
• Laura Secord Homestead in Queenston, open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Brock’s Monument at Queenston Heights, open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Mackenzie Printery and Newspaper Museum in Queenston, open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• McFarland House on the Niagara Parkway, open daily from noon to 5 p.m.
• The Niagara Apothecary on Queen Street, open daily from noon to 6 p.m.
Enjoy live entertainment by some of Niagara’s best musicians:
• Every Friday from 9 to 11 p.m. an Saturday from 8 to 11 p.m. at the Churchill Lounge in the Prince of Wales
• Every Saturday from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Bacchus Terrace at the Queen’s Landing
• Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 9 p.m. to midnight, the Olde Angel Inn Pub rocks
• Every Friday and Saturday from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. on the outdoor patio overlooking Lake Ontario at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Golf Club
• Every Friday and Saturday from 8 p.m. in the Wine Bar at the Old Winery Restaurant
On July 22 at 8 p.m., American roots music legend Stanley “Buckwheat” Dural Jr. and his Buckwheat Zydeco band takes you on a “propulsive, rollicking, swamp-boogie joy ride” at The Old Winery restaurant. Dinner packages are available. Call 905-468-8900 for tickets.
Rock at the winery from 5 to 10 p.m. to the sounds of Juno award-winning SLOAN and a chart-topping guest artist on Saturday July 25 at Trius. Tickets are $45 per person for the concern, but you can save $5 on general admission tickets by using the promo code ROCK5. Tickets for a VIP dinner and concert tickets are also available for $160 per person.
Posted by Donna S. Vieira on behalf of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Bed & Breakfast Association
This is the one and only official website of the Niagara-on-the-Lake B&B Association. Members listed on this site have undergone health and safety inspections, are legally licensed to operate as a B&B and meet all the required standards set out by the association. If you prefer to book online, this option also ensures that commissions go back into the association’s coffers for the benefit of all members of the not-for-profit association and not other, unrelated, commercial entities.