From fireworks in Niagara Falls and Welland to a festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, there’s something for everyone. Several heritage sites and tourist attractions open for the season this weekend as well, including Niagara Parks’ Old Fort Erie (pictured) and Happy Rolph’s Animal Farm in St. Catharines. Photo credit: Niagara Parks
The Victoria Day long weekend marks the unofficial start of the summer season for many Canadians. It’s a time to enjoy the warmer weather, visit with family and friends, and take in the sights and sounds of all the special events and celebrations happening across the country over the next few days.
Locally, there’s plenty taking place this weekend to get you in the summer spirit.
The Niagara Parks Commission will be hosting multiple events that offer something for everyone.
The Niagara Glen Nature Centre will be celebrating its 100th anniversary on Saturday, May 20 with an environmental clean-up, nature tours, Indigenous programming, and bouldering workshop and exhibit.
Niagara Parks heritage sites will also open for the season Saturday. Sites include Old Fort Erie, Laura Secord House, Mackenzie Printery, and McFarland House.
And of course, there is the Niagara Falls Fireworks series. The nightly fireworks display will commence for the season at 10:00pm Friday, May 19.
In St. Catharines, Happy Rolph’s Animal Farm will open for the season, with the animal area available between 10:00am and 8:00pm this weekend.
The annual Virgil Stampede will be back in full swing at Centennial Sports Park off Four Mile Creek Rd. The three-day event from May 20 to 22 offers rides, games, food vendors and fireworks. Admission is $5 per person, with proceeds going towards the proposed pump track concept in Virgil.
Safari Niagara in Stevensville will be open this weekend offering limited attractions during its shoulder season. The 150-acre nature park has a variety of animal and bird species as well as rides and play areas for children of all ages.
The City of Welland is hosting a Victoria Day celebration on Saturday with a free roller blading event at the Welland Main Arena. The public is encouraged to dress for the theme, “Roll Back Into the 80s.” Half-hour time slots will be offered from 6:30pm to 9:30pm on a first-come-first-serve basis, culminating with a fireworks show.
Victoria Day takes place on Monday, May 22. A statutory holiday, several places of business and administration will be closed, including most grocery stores, many major shopping centres, banks, municipal offices, government service centres like the post office, and Beer Stores and LCBOs (outside of select Avondales).
Certain pharmacies will remain open, as will a few grocery stores, recreational facilities, and beaches. The Outlet Collection, Walmart Supercentre in Niagara Falls, and movie theatres will all be open.