Every winter around this time the city of Ottawa hosts an outdoor winter festival called Winterlude. This year for several weekends in February winter in Canada does not mean cold, but rather fun in the outdoors. Ice carvings, skating on the Rideau Canal and a playground made of snow are just some of the activities you will find around the nation's capital. It is an annual celebration of Canada's climate and culture.
They say that the proof is in the pudding and the fact that each year 650,000 people take in some part of Winterlude. This would indicate that it is an event that is enjoyed year after year by many.
As for activities, most of them are open all week (check schedules for exceptions) and are for the most part free. What can you do you ask? Well, first off, there is the skating on the Rideau Canal which is the world's largest outdoor skating area. With around 7.8 kilometres of skateway you'll never run out of space. During Winterlude the Canal host activities such as the Winterlude Triathalon, skating demos and the Bedzzz Annual Bed Race. Confederation Park is transformed into the Rogers Crystal Garden where art and ice collide to make beautiful sculptures. During the evening a light show in the area makes the sculptures even cooler to look at. There is also an ice-carving competition in this area.
Obviously these are just a sampling of the activities taking place during the Winterlude festival. Everything is aimed at the family and if you make the short drive down for the weekend you're guaranteed to have something to do every moment.