Rodeos, music festivals, outdoor adventure, historical tours galore. It’s a great week to be out and about in Manitoba! Hop along with the frog races at Frog Follies or hop right into the Churchill River to have an up-close experience with friendly beluga whales. Get musical at the Soca Reggae festival or on a Magical Musical Tour through Winnipeg. Here’s what’s hot this week…
Jam out at Soca Reggae
July 8 to 10
Old Market Square, Winnipeg
Bring your lawn chair to the historic Exchange District and set up for a weekend of reggae. The Soca Reggae Festival is a celebration of Caribbean dance and music (Soca, Reggae and Calypso).
Hop, hop, hop at Frog Follies
July 13 to 16
St. Pierre Jolys
The moment your pet frog has been training for has arrived. St. Pierre Jolys’ Frog Follies is a thriving festival that centers on the famous frog jumping championship – where one frog will hop towards glory and riches (well, mostly glory). The festival also includes a slo-pitch tournament, a parade and performances by local artists.
Rock out on a Magical Musical History Tour
Embark on a one-of-a-kind tour of Winnipeg’s illustrious rock ‘n’ roll history with Heartland Travel. See the house where Neil Young lived and began his song writing career, and the home where Burton Cummings and Randy Bachman of the Guess Who wrote These Eyes, No Time. The tour is packed with vintage photographs, music and plenty of colourful stories.
Check out a country fair
July 13 to 15
You can find all the usual suspects at this year’s Carman Country Fair. Be entertained (or scared) by the clown, scream your heart out on a rollercoaster and eat to your heart’s content at one of the many food vendors. Put your farm skills to the test at the Farmers Challenge and celebrate your win at the beer gardens before the day is through.
Browse a night market
Assiniboia Downs, Winnipeg
Manitoba is getting another night market! Don’t miss this unique event at the Assiniboia Downs, filled with activities, crafts from local artisans, food truck fare, live music, beer gardens and more.
Spend a day in the life of a pioneer
Pembina Threshermen’s Museum
Go on a family adventure and live in the past lane at A Day in the Life of a Pioneer. Don’t worry, there will be significantly less chores and way more exploring to be had at this unique museum. Visit the good ol’ General Store and collect old-fashioned souvenirs at every stop.
Hit the road to Clearwater Lake
Located 20 km north of The Pas, Clearwater Lake Provincial Park is best known for its lake of the same name, which takes up a beefy half of the park. This deep (clear to the bottom at 11 m), spring fed lake boasts stunning quality and provides ideal conditions for lake trout to flourish. While an obvious hot spot for anglers, Clearwater Lake is also popular for camping, kayaking, SUPing, boating, and in general, spending a blissful day on the water. Accessible via a self-guided trail is one of nature’s great achievements – the caves – made up of giant chunks of rock broken off from the dolomite cliffs.
Celebrate Ukrainian culture
Want to dive into a piece of Manitoba’s culture this weekend? Head to Gardenton for a celebration of Ukrainian heritage, complete with performers, traditional fare (mm, perogies) and guided tours of the museum.
Wander through Brandon’s historical buildings
July 15 to 16
Learn about Brandon’s heritage on this exciting two-day event that opens the doors to some of the city’s most stunning buildings. You will have the opportunity to explore buildings that hold a historical and architectural significance, many of which are not normally accessible to the public.
Explore a Manitoban ruin
Pinawa Dam was Manitoba’s first hydro-electric generating station. Today, it stands as a Manitoban ruin and a memory of days past. Walk the Old Dam trail and find the 13 interpretive signs that explain the structure’s history.
Swim with the canaries of the sea
A visit to Churchill offers an unparalleled ability to get close to docile beluga whales during the summer months of July and August. A natural phenomenon to witness, each year thousands of whales make their way to the chilly waters of the Hudson Bay’s Churchill River, to birth their calves. Get ready to sputter out a blitz of oohs and ahhs!
Go into the heart of Riding Mountain National Park
Many have been charmed by the quaint town of Wasagaming, located in the heart of Riding Mountain National Park. Harnessing the best of both worlds, visitors can go from camping in the bush to browsing shops, cafes and bakeries in the same day. With the highest accolades, the area’s yurts, fresh cinnamon buns and sparkling Clearlake will have you returning time and time again.
Discover the rich history of Manitoba’s Aboriginal people
Wednesdays and Saturdays in July | 10:00 am
Starting at St. Boniface Cathedral
Aboriginal elders lead you from the St. Boniface Cathedral, over the Esplanade Riel Bridge and into the heart of the Forks on this family-friendly, free oral history tour. Learn about the rich and unique history of Manitoba’s Aboriginal people through stories and the legends behind iconic Forks monuments.
Savour a family trip in Minnedosa
Even after the Minnedosa Fun Fest is through, the excitement continues in this little town in Manitoba with beaches, parks, camping and delicious restaurants. Visit historic buildings at the Minnedosa Heritage Village or stop for a bite to eat at the Dari Isle drive-in. After a day of swinging bridges, bison-viewing and swimming, you’ll be happy to return to your tent for a good night’s rest.
Rejuvenate and relax at the spa
Wouldn’t a day spent at a luxurious spa be just the ticket? Experience relaxation in a whole new way at the outdoor Scandinavian style oasis, Thermëa by Nordik Spa-Nature or escape to Ten Spa at Hotel Fort Garry for a self-detox Hamam. The Riverstone Spa is an ideal (and very serene) option after a day of exploring The Forks. If you’d like to relax outside of the city limits, head north to Elkhorn Resort on the edge of Riding Mountain National Park.
Go to the rodeo
July 14 to 16
Summers in rural Manitoba just wouldn’t be the same without a good ol’ fashioned rodeo. The Arborg Fair & Rodeo is a family-fun event complete with horse shows, a parade, barnyard olympics, a kid zone and more.
Make a huge splash at Fun Mountain
804 Murdock Rd, Springfield
While the seven waterslides are of course the main attraction, Fun Mountain also features bumper boats, mini golf, a splash pad, giant hot tub, and smaller slides for smaller kids.
Take a glimpse into history
On until September 4
Fort la Reine Museum, Portage la Prairie
Visit the Fort la Reine Museum to see the international travelling exhibition from the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam. Learn about Anne Frank’s time in hiding during the Holocaust and of the Canadian participation in WW2.
Attend a film fest in a national park
July 11 to 16
Riding Mountain National Park
Celebrate independent film in one of Canada’s most beautiful national parks. The film fest includes documentaries about environmentalism, agriculture, adventure, local food movements and regionally inspired stories. Digital media camps will take place in Dauphin and Wasagaming while ‘A Taste for Film’ will take place at the Visitor Centre Museum and feature a gourmet selection of locally sourced dishes.