So we are halfway through Summer and the fun certainly does not have to end, especially when you visit some of the most breathtaking and delicious wineries of Niagara on the Lake (or as the locals call it…Niagara Wine Country).
The list of incredible wineries of Niagara on the Lake are endless and we’re happy to share our favourite Niagara on the Lake Wineries’ List:
The name says it all…who wouldn’t like a pop-up patio every Friday in the Summer from 11:30 am – 3:30pm. Grab some lunch from a different local chef every week and a glass of their favourite summertime vino. Prices range from $5 – $20 per person.
Take a walk through the Chardonnay vines every Saturday and Sunday at 3pm while tasting three of Ravine’s favourite Chardonnays. Come on…does it get any better than this? Reservations are a must for this wine-der-ful event.
The name alone should capture your attention. Kick up your heels under the rafters at the Big Red Barn at an ol’ fashioned Barn Burner. Celebrate the release of their 2012 Reserve portfolio and boogie in your boots at this unforgettable after party. Space is limited.
We love to celebrate with a big bang every Friday and Sunday throughout the summer. So of course we are going to do something special for our Country’s Birthday and the Birthday of our Great Neighbour (or should be say Neighbor?). Come and join us on July 1st and 4th for some spectacular eye candy in the sky. Plus don’t miss the Coca Cola Concert Series on the Queen Victoria Stage right across from Niagara Falls which happens every evening right before the Fireworks.
Nothing says patriotism like a Canada Day Parade. The festivities start at 11am along Victoria Avenue to Queen Street ending on St. Clair Avenue. Following the parade, get ready for some musical entertainment at City Hall starting at 12:30pm until 9pm. And you can’t have a birthday celebration without birthday cake, plus free face painting and more.
Can you believe that we’ve been celebrating the Friendship Festival for 29 years? The Friendship Festival is all about the good relations between Canada and the United States since the end of the War of 1812. Come and celebrate from June 26th – 28th with fabulous food, fun and musical entertainment (live country music – Josh Gracin, Jamie O’Neal, Chadley Chase and Arms of America – U2 Tribute Band) And you can’t miss the “2015 Festivals Got Talent.”
Every Wednesday starting at 4:30pm until dusk, come to the Market at the Village in Niagara-on-the-Lake and be sure to bring your appetite and your dancing shoes. Featuring some fabulous local food vendors, wineries and microbreweries. This is the perfect place to paint the town red and white in honour of Canada.
Speaking of great wineries and microbreweries, Niagara is definitely not short of some great places to raise a glass to patriotism. Visit Niagara Wine Country where you’ll find over 70 Niagara Wineries to choose from.
If something “hoppy” is what you are looking for, check out Niagara Oast House Brewers (just look for the Big Red Barn past the Old Oak) or Silversmith in Niagara-on-the-Lake (just look for the church and old church from 1894 converted in a microbrewery). You will be pleasantly surprised with both.
There are also a few musical events to get you in the holiday spirit.
The Steve Miller Band with special guest Miller and the Sinners – June 30th at 6:30pm. The Steve Miller Band needs no introduction.
Marianas Trench – July 1st at 6:30pm – A Canadian Pop Band from British Columbia. The band has released three full length studio albums, the most recent titled, Ever After, which was nominated for a Juno Award.
A new epic vocal showdown like never before, hosted by 98 Degrees’ band member Drew Lachey, Battle Of The Voices is a knockout music event featuring artists from American Idol, The Voice and America’s Got Talent. Become part of the battle where you choose the champion!
And we know of the perfect place to stay during the festivities. Make room for A LOT of Fun at the Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls. We’ve Got a Package with Your Name on it: One Night, Two Night, Romance, Family Fun and one for the Girls.
Niagara has joined the ranks of the world’s premier golf destinations in terms of challenge, design aesthetics, course conditioning, facilities and service. The Top Five Recommended Courses: 1) Grand Niagara 2) Hunters Pointe, Legends on the Niagara, Whirlpool and Peninsula Lakes. These courses come highly recommended from some golf aficionados we know personally and take this sport very seriously.
Many people don’t know this, but Niagara is well known for its fishing. The popular fishing grounds are the Niagara River and Lake Ontario, where you can fish year-round for a variety of fish: Chinook Salmon, Coho Salmon, Rainbow Trout (Steelhead) and Brown Trout.
Your captain Aldo Nava has appeared on the Canadian Sport Fishing Television Series (and does he know fish).
So what are you waiting for? Make your dad’s day with a sweet fishing trip.
Niagara is also known for their micro-breweries. Our favourites are Niagara Oast House Brewers and Silversmith.
Niagara Oast is easy to spot. It’s just down the road, past the old oak in the big red barn. They are famous for their Barn Raiser Brew, plus their live music every Friday night and their gourmet food from Gastronomo Vagabundo . You have to try their fish tacos.
Silversmith is another popular micro-brewery and what’s unique about them is that their location is inside an old church, built in 1894 (talk about character). What’s on tap? Black lager, Bavarian Breakfast Wheat, Hill 145 Golden Ale, Dam Buster British Pale Ale. And while you’re sipping one of these popular brews, you have to grab a bite to eat from Tide and Vine’s kitchen, serving pub food classics: oysters, po’ boys, wings and more. Your dad will love it!
What dad doesn’t love a classic steak and potato meal? Name one, we dare you. The Keg Steakhouse + Bar is known for their mouth-watering steak and succulent seafood.
You can’t go wrong with a Top Sirloin, Filet Mignon or Prime Rib served with potatoes just the way you like them (baked, roasted garlic mashed, twice baked or good old french fries). We look forward to seeing you at the Courtyard Marriot Keg Steakhouse + Bar very soon.
Play Tourist for a Day
Our last favourite thing to do with dad is to play tourist for a day. Why not start with an overnight stay at the Courtyard Marriott? Check out our 1 and 2 Night Packages, which include it all (room, breakfast, dinner voucher at The Keg or TGI Friday’s, WEGO shuttle passes and so much more). What dad doesn’t love steak? The Keg Steakhouse + Bar is located right in the lobby of the hotel and has so many different types of cuts to choose from. After dinner head on down to the Falls where your dad can experience some of the most popular attractions which will leave him speechless (Hornblower Niagara Cruises and Journey Behind the Falls). These two attractions are also part of our Niagara Falls Tour Package. Check out Above the Falls Tours for more information.
So you’ll all set for Father’s Day! You can thank us later!
Looking for a Mother’s Day gift as wondrous as your mom? While that might seem like a mission that’s impossible, we do have a few fabulous gift suggestions that will definitely make her smile. After all Niagara Falls is one of the most wondrous places to visit and is overflowing with wonderful experiences for that special lady in your life.
Hornblower Niagara Cruises This Niagara Falls Boat Tour of a lifetime will leave her speechless. With so many boat tour options to choose from, you might just have to experience them all. From the traditional Voyage to the Falls Tour, to the Illumination or Fireworks Cruise, all three cruises will make your “WOW” list. While the launch date is not yet confirmed, we do know based on previous years, that the Hornblower Niagara Cruises, usually hits the water at the end of April/early May.
Looking for a whole afternoon of fun? If so, you’ve got to check out the Courtyard by Marriott’s Niagara Falls’ Tour Package, which includes Hornblower Niagara Cruises, Journey Behind the Falls, the Butterfly Conservatory, a stop at the Floral Clock and Photo Opportunities at the Niagara Glen/Whirlpool Rapids. Check out the breathtaking video of Hornblower Niagara Cruises here.
Niagara Wine Country
Sip and Sizzle – weekends in May This is one of Niagara’s hottest May Events. Experience 26 Niagara-on-the-Lake Wineries and unique grilled food paired with fine VQA wine. This will have your mom doing her happy dance. Tour passes start at $43 per person.
If you haven’t been to one of Niagara’s Handmade Markets, this is definitely an experience you cannot miss. Featuring over 85 Artisans, the 13th Street Bakery gourmet goodies, fine wine, fabulous food and live music. Your mom will have a blast, as she sips, savours and shops away.
We know that this event is one week after Mother’s Day, however you can keep the celebrations going as this is one of the most delicious Spring events. Get ready to go on a Food Truck Journey: 15 Food Trucks and 5 local food vendors paired with some of the best VQA wines with the Peller Estates’ vineyard as your backdrop.
Spend the afternoon or evening exploring the quaint town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, which is famous for their unique boutiques, cozy cafés and the ever so popular Shaw Festival. Over Mother’s Day weekend, there are so many great plays to catch. From The Lady From the Sea, Peter and the Starcatcher, You Never Can Tell and Sweet Charity. The theatre performances promise to be an enriching experience.
The Courtyard by Marriott is one of the top 4-star and mother-loving Niagara Falls hotels close to all of these exciting and unforgettable Mother’s Day events. Check out our Mother’s Day Travel Deals for 1 Night or 2 Nights.
The name says it all. It’s three weekends of farm fresh food paired with new vintage and aromatic wines at 22 Twenty Valley wineries. Plus you can collect recipe cards from all of the wineries to create your own Get Fresh Cookbook. Passports for all three Sundays, or your choice weekend, start at only $40. It’s your ticket to a fresh NEW experience. Check out the mocktail passports, for the designated driver in your life.
This super SIZZLING hot event is back again. Picture a barbeque bash paired with your favourite Niagara-on-the-Lake wine and your fabulous friends. The best part… the grilling and the dishes are taken care of. Tour passes start at $43 per person.
The wait is over. Book your tickets for the ultimate 4th annual backyard bash at Peller Estates. Featuring 15 Food Trucks and 5 pop up food vendors who promise to deliver some of the tastiest street food alongside some of Peller’s award-winning wines.
Get ready to mix and mingle with 8 Niagara wineries. Their approach is to “laze and graze” in Wine Country. And let it be known that these aren’t sample sizes you are dealing with, we are talking about some kick-back and enjoy portions. Single tickets start at $30 per person and weekend grazing starts at $40 per person.
This is an event within walking distance from our hotel (well let’s say a nice 20 minute stroll). If you like food, wine, beer and spirits, then you’ve gotta eat and sip here. The very own John Catucci from The Food Network’s “You Gotta Eat Here” will be taking the stage to talk about some of his favourite food from the Expo.
These are just a few of the events we love and it’s only the beginning of Spring (even though it doesn’t feel like it).
Stay at the Courtyard Marriott Niagara Falls and Sip, Savour and Explore the fine things that Niagara has to offer. Check out our 1 Night Romance Package starting at $119 per night because it won’t last long.
This question just dawned on me the other day. Why is it that a Bunny delivers Easter eggs? Where did this tradition start?
After getting some answers from good old Google, it all makes more sense now. The tradition all started in America (way back when) with stories of people seeing an egg-laying hare. And the decoration of eggs dates back to the 13th Century. Other traditions, such as the consumption of eating Easter candy is a more modern addition in celebration of this early springtime holiday.
Niagara Falls is filled with Easter traditions. From Easter egg hunts to Festivals.
Here are a few of our favourite Easter traditions:
Bird Kingdom Enjoy an Eggstra special Easter weekend. Kids (4-15) are just $7.00 with a regular adult admission. Enjoy hundreds of free-flying birds in a 50,000 square foot tropical rainforest setting, as well as an Easter egg hunt all day with prizes.
Easter Festival at Heartland Forest – April 4th from 11am – 4pm It’s a Multicultural Celebration enjoying all different kinds of Easter traditions. Experience flags from different countries, music and dance demonstrations from different cultures, plus enjoy Easter treats from various countries, free crafts and entertainment, door prizes, face painting and even a free dance lesson.
Jackson-Triggs Winery along with Van Noort Flower Stoudio team up to offer you the perfect pairing of Wine & Design.
The Jackson-Triggs team will be serving premium VQA wine, local charcuterie, artisanal cheeses with House-made preserves, as you create your contemporary Easter Centerpiece with a Van Noort design expert . It’s the perfect way to prepare your home for Spring. $65 per person
Enjoy Mother Nature’s gorgeous Easter creations. Featuring a cross display of lilies surrounded by colourful and fragrant spring flowers such as daffodils, tulips, hyacinths and azaleas. Your kids will love the live chicks, bunnies and songbirds.Daily from 9:30am – 5pm.
Begin or continue your Easter traditions in Niagara Falls. The Courtyard by Marriott is one of the top 4-star Niagara Falls close to all of these eggstra special Easter events. Check out our ongoing special offers.
The Pan Am Games are the world’s third largest international multi-sport games, only being surpassed in size and scope by the Olympics and Asian Games. Canada has had the honour of hosting the Games twice (in 1967 and 1999, both times in Winnipeg, Manitoba).
With over 48 different sports categories, from archery to beach volleyball to wheelchair tennis, there is definitely a sport for every spectator to watch. However in Niagara we are secretly excited to watch all of the water sports happening right in our neighbourhood. The Canoe/Kayak Sprint is happening at our very own Welland International Flatwater Centre. And the Rowing will be taking place at the Royal Canadian Henley in St. Catharines.
The Welland International Flatwater Centre boasts almost eight kilometres of deep, placid water, making it an ideal spot for hosting fast-paced paddling sports. In fact, the name “Welland” comes from a Celtic word meaning “good river.” In preparation for the Pan Am Games 2015, TO2015 widened a section of the canal to meet international competition standards, built two new buildings, including a timing tower and the athlete centre, added a plaza, start towers and permanent seating for 500 spectators.
In addition, a state-of-the-art, multi-sport training tank has been installed in the new athlete centre. The tank will enable Canadian high-performance athletes and fledging local paddlers to perfect their strokes in the off-season in a controlled testing environment against a variable current. That is what we call commitment and passion!
The Royal Canadian Henley, is the home of the largest rowing regatta in North America. The Royal Canadian Henley is rated as a world-class rowing course by the International Rowing Federation. This venue will be home to 14 men’s and women’s competitions during the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games. The facility has previously hosted the 1970 and 1999 World Rowing Championships, as well as the prestigious annual Royal Canadian Henley Regatta since 1903. We are proud Niagarians!
The Pan Am Games 2015 torch relay is also just around the corner and will be one of the most exciting events leading up to the Pan Am Games. The relay will be a 41-day journey that will ignite the Pan Am spirit in more than 130 communities. Deeply rooted in history and tradition, the initial flame will be lit during a traditional ceremony in Teotihuacan, Mexico, before it travels to Canada. The torch relay will take place from May 30th – July 10th, 2015. Check out the torch relay map here. In Niagara, we have learned that our torch relay date is June 20th.
The competition medals for the Pan Am Games and Parapan Am Games are being designed and produced by the Royal Canadian Mint. The medals will be on display from March 14th – 29th at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. During the games, they will be on display at the Royal Canadian Mint Exhibition space at the CIBC Pan Am Park.
Tickets are currently on hold until the end of March, but once the hold is released, you can purchase tickets here.
Come and share in our enthusiasm and visit Niagara Falls during your Pam Am Games’ journey. At the Courtyard by Marriott, we are one of the most passionate Niagara Falls Hotels when it comes to sports. We are only a 10 minute walk from Niagara Falls and major Niagara Falls attractions, such as Hornblower Niagara Cruises and Journey Behind the Falls. Stay connected with our latest Niagara Falls specials leading up to the Pam Am Games 2015.
Niagara Falls is full of new discoveries every time you visit!
We are so excited to announce that Jerry Seinfeld and his HUGE sense of humour will hit the stage on June 5th at 7:30pm. Tickets are sold out, but keep checking back, as tickets may open up. www.ticketmaster.ca or by phone at 1-855-985-5000.
Book your Getaway to Niagara Falls soon. Check out one of the best Niagara Falls Hotel Deals in the City at the Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls. Our Ultimate One Night Package starts at $119 per night (Sunday – Thursday), $129 on Fridays and $139 on Saturdays. This One Night Package includes: accommodations, breakfast buffet, dinner voucher, cocktails at The Keg, wine tasting, beer tasting, cheese tasting, fudge tasting, WEGO Shuttle passes, a snack pack for two and a lavender culinary experience.
Lady Antebellum – Feb. 16th and 17th.With the recent release of their fifth studio album, 747, Grammy Award winning country group Lady Antebellum bring their triple-stacked harmonies to Fallsview. Experience the trio’s big, blockbuster sound with hits such as “Just A Kiss”, “We Owned The Night”, “American Honey”, “I Run To You”, “Need You Now”, “Downtown” and “Bartender”.
Just a short drive over the border and voilá you are at the Seneca Niagara Casino, the place to be for some of the best Niagara Falls Casino Concerts.
Average White Band – Feb. 13th at 8pm
Frank Sinatra Jr. – Feb. 14th at 8pm
Honeymoon Suite – Feb. 20th at 8pm
Foreigner – Feb. 21st at 8pm
Lion Dance and Red Envelope Distribution – Feb. 22nd at 8:30pm
Bowzer’s Rock N’ Roll Party – Feb. 28th at 8pm
Book your Winter Getaway to Niagara Falls soon. Check out one of the best Niagara Falls Hotel Deals in the City at the Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls. Our Ultimate One Night Romance Package starts at $119 per night (Sunday – Friday) and includes: accommodations, breakfast buffet, dinner voucher, cocktails at The Keg, one bottle of wine and two wine glasses, hershey kisses, wine tasting, beer tasting, cheese tasting and a lavender culinary experience.
It’s one of the most wonderful times of the year in Niagara Falls starting on November 15th and running until January 12th, 2015 (sing with us).
The 32nd annual Ontario Power Generation Winter Festival of Lights (a.k.a. Winter Festival of Lights to us local folk) is just 12 days away. It’s definitely an exciting annual event that we all look forward to every year. It’s the official start of the holiday season and the largest Illumination Festival in Canada. The city flicks on their “magic” light switch and Niagara Falls becomes alive with over 3 Million twinkling lights and over 125 animated displays.
Don’t miss an “all new” opening ceremonies on Saturday, November 15th in Queen Victoria Park. This year is full of excitement starting at 6pm.
Starting at 6pm – Acrobats from Zero Gravity Circus will perform on a circular stage set up in the centre of Queen Victoria Park. Magic will happen right before your eyes! Featuring cirque performers including an aerial hoop artist high above the ground showcasing feats of high-flying precision & aerial contortion. The cirque performance will conclude with highly skilled fire masters who will put on stunning demonstrations of immaculate control & brilliant fiery artistry including: fire poi spinning, fire torches and so much more. The artists complex tricks will weave illuminated patterns of fire to hypnotic effect, so don’t forget to bring your camera!
Following the cirque performance the official “Flip of the Switch” ceremony will illuminate millions of lights and spark off a fantastic fireworks display over the Falls.
For those who miss the 6 pm show, Zero Gravity Circus will perform their magic again at 7 pm complete with fireworks but without the flip of the switch.
Check out the breathtaking Fireworks display at the Opening Ceremonies. Local music composer, Nathan Chamberland, composed and recorded the Orchestral score for this mesmerizing masterpiece.
Visitors will be awed with 13 new Canadian Wildlife displays (both modern and prehistoric), including: a moose and buffalo, howling wolves, charging rams, bears, beavers, whales, deer, and dinosaurs that roamed the land millions of years ago. This winter wonderland also includes displays of aboriginal life as well as the popular Noah’s Ark display. New this year, there will be a 20 foot tall illumination, called the Soma, designed to resemble a waterfall. This is the perfect illuminated display to take your holiday selfies. There will be a large illuminated water feature in the middle of the pond and the trees will be lit in projection lighting that will change colours in sync with music.
A special treat this year are Friday and Saturday night visits (5:30 – 7:30pm) from Santa until Dec. 21 – then he has to go make final preparations for his big day!
Also, if you tune into 100.5 FM during your drive through Dufferin Islands you will enjoy Christmas music to get you in the festive mood.
Very exciting news for families and TMNT fans! The Ontario Power Generation Festival of Lights has partnered with Paramount Canada this year! There will be a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle illuminated display at the top of Clifton Hill, which will be unveiled on Dec. 12th at 7pm. Featuring your favourite turtles: Leonardo, Raphael, Michaelangelo and Donatello. Besides this exciting new light display, there will also be a special screening of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle film at the Ripley’s 4D Moving Theatre on Clifton Hill and all the lights will be green on December 16th.
At 9pm every Friday night between November 21st and January 9th, the sky over the Horseshoe and American Falls will be lit up with a stunning fireworks performance. You will see as many as 20 fireworks shows this season.
2014-15 Niagara Falls Winter Fireworks over the Falls Performance Schedule!
Saturday November 15th two shows as part of the OPG Winter Fesitval of Lights Opening Ceremonies
Friday evenings in November: 21st & 28th
Friday evenings in December: 5th, 12th, 19th
Nightly Fireworks Shows: December 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 25th & 26th
Friday evenings in January: 2nd & 9th
All performances take place at 9:00pm unless otherwise noted. The fireworks schedule is subject to change; each show is approximately five minutes in length. As always, fireworks performances are weather permitting and may be cancelled due to poor conditions like high winds or rain.
And with the Niagara Falls Winter Festival of Lights comes many other exciting Niagara Falls Events such as: the TD Canada’s Rink at the Brink Outdoor Skating Rink and ET Canada’s New Year’s Eve in Niagara Falls(details will be announced shortly).
Looking for a Niagara Falls Festival of Lights hotel? The Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls is one of the closest Niagara Falls Hotelsto this spectacular and traditional Winter Event.
Only 9 more Fridays until Santa comes to town (okay so we obviously love the holidays).