It’s a week where anything can and will happen, and the suspense is killing me. What plot will unfold at a Fringe play? Which team will come out on top at MTS Superspike? Who will win the jousting tournament at the Cooks Creek Medieval Fest? Are those dinosaurs real? So many questions, so little time. This week in one word: Dramatic. Here’s what’s hot in Manitoba…
Get your Fringe on
July 13 to 24
The Exchange District, Winnipeg
Original, accessible, cheeky – these are just some of the adjectives used to describe North America’s second-largest Fringe Theatre Festival! For 12 days, more than 180 companies from around the world will present comedy, drama, dance, improv, musicals and more while Old Market Square comes alive with non-stop entertainment on the outdoor stage.
Don a crown at Medieval Festival
July 16, 12:00 pm
Immaculate Conception Church, Cooks Creek
Hear ye, hear ye. This weekend, fair ladies and brave knights gather at the Immaculate Conception Church for a step back in time to the medieval ages. Watch exciting jousting matches, heavy combat in armour, chess tournaments, and puppet shows, or spend your time in the Garden of Ale. Princes, princesses, jesters, lords and ladies all welcome.
Bump, set and spike at Maple Grove Park
July 15 to 16
Maple Grove Rugby Park, Winnipeg
Western Canada’s biggest beach/outdoor volleyball tournament returns, with every dollar raised going to support the Winnipeg based National Women’s Volleyball Team. The festival atmosphere features tons of food trucks, a killer beach dance party and entertainment from headliners such as The Sheepdogs and the JD Edwards Band.
Celebrate July Festivals
July 11 to 12
Visitor Information Centre
What’s one of our favourite things about summer in Manitoba? The festivals of course! Drop by our Visitor Information Centre at The Forks from July 11 to 12 as we showcase some of the best festivals in July. And what would a festival be without music? Fire and Water Festival will be in the Centre on July 11 and 12 with live acoustic performances byThe Janzen Boys, Micah Erenberg and Cohen Sieg.
See dinosaurs at the Assiniboine Park Zoo
May 21 to September long weekend
Various buildings, Winnipeg
Something BIG has arrived at the Assiniboine Park Zoo for the summer. Dinosaurs Alive!® is an immersive and comprehensive dinosaur experience that allows visitors to step back in time to the prehistoric era as the lifelike dinosaurs move and roar throughout the zoo. Learn about your favourite dinosaurs or just enjoy the thrill of seeing these beasts in action. Don’t miss it!
Get animated at Ai-Kon
July 15 to 17
RBC Convention Centre, Winnipeg
Are you ready for Manitoba’s premiere anime convention? Ai-Kon is coming back for another non-stop weekend celebrating geekish hobbies you know and love, from Japanese animation to comics, video games, costumes and so much more!
Attend a film fest in a national park
July 12 to 17
Riding Mountain National Park
Celebrate independent film in one of Canada’s most beautiful national parks. The film fest include 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.
Jig, jig and jig some more at the Asham Stomperfest
July 15 to 17
Reedy Creek, Kinosota
Want to get jiggy with the best of them? The beautiful setting of Reedy Creek is the backdrop for this year’s Asham Stomperfest. Entertainment features Canada’s Got Talent winners Sagkeeng’s Finest, the Asham Stompers, Nelson Little, The Sojourners, Harlequin, Bluegrass Martins and more.
Dig your toes in sand at the beach
Hot sand, cool water and bare feet are an unbeatable combination. Every Manitoban has a favourite go-to beach, but with a province that boasts over 100,000 lakes, there are so many new ones for you to discover and enjoy. And you’re in luck because Buzzfeed posted a list of 14 Manitoba beaches you must explore this summer.
What’s more fun than a party at the beach? How about two parties only 3o minutes away from each other? This weekend, Winnipeg Beach hosts their classic Boardwalk Days featuring a BIG midway, outdoor markets, pancake breakfast, parade and fireworks, while Gimli hosts a Beach Bash on Saturday where you can rock out to Econoline Crush.
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!
Discover the rich history of Manitoba’s Aboriginal people
Wednesdays 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.
Mix and mingle on the rooftop
July 14, 6:00 pm to 1:00 am
The Metropolitan Entertainment Centre
Mix and mingle on the Metropolitan’s gorgeous rooftop patio for the first in a networking summer series. The Hub is a bi-weekly rendezvous where you can meet your next colleague or just make new friends. Check out locally designed fashions, live art and craft cocktails. This week’s event features a special showcase where art marries fashion.
Get away from the hustle and bustle at a unique stay
Planning a staycation in Manitoba? Take the path less traveled and learn about what it takes to run a family farm, or simply kick back at a resort or in your own personal yurt. The oTENTiks in Riding Mountain National Park are an excellent compromise between tent and cabin and are especially convenient for those who prefer glamping to camping. Check in, check out and escape from it all.
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.
Root for our boys in Blue
Investors Group Field
Are you ready for some football?!! The summer months will once again be all about Winnipeg Blue Bombers football as the team begins its CFL pre-season at Investors Group Field! The boys in Blue will be taking on the fierce Edmonton Eskimos. C’MON BLUE!!!
Become an Eco Explorer
EcoExplore invites you to go on a kayaking experience in Riding Mountain, a Bison Safari at FortWhyte Alive or a learning vacation at the Churchill Northern Studies Centre! There are plenty of Eco Explore sites to choose from. Next, simply upload your photo on Instagram orTwitter with the hashtag #ecoexploremb and you will be entered to win an amazing monthly prize. July’s prize is 4 passes to the Assiniboine Park Zoo and a copy of the book, “The Land Where the Sky Begins.”
Head to the Living Prairie Museum on July 17 for the 10th Annual Monarch Butterfly Festival – the perfect way to get some awesome photo entries in!
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.
Go to the rodeo
July 15 to 17
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.
Swim and splash at Lilac Resort
Open daily, June to August
A short ride outside the city limits of Winnipeg brings you to a family-friendly oasis of summer fun. Spend the day speeding down water slides, or just relax in the hot tub. There are tiki juice bars, wading pools, beach volleyball course, pedal boats, a stocked trout pond and live entertainment every weekend. Lilac Resort is the place to go for a day of soaking in the sun!