In & Around /Volume 1 /Issue 29

July 21, 2016

This Week:
Outdoor Concert at Botanical Garden
Long Sault Parkway in Morrisburg, Ontario

IN: Botanical Garden’s Intimate Concert

Montréal’s Botanical Garden is hosting a series of intimate concerts every Sunday this summer. This coming Sunday (when the weather should cooperate), Montréal’s own Patrick Norman (aka Yvon Éthier) will be performing a free live show for all Botanical Garden visitors (which means, of course, that you’d need to buy an entrance to the Garden to see the “free” show). Patrick showcases a litany of influences in his music, from country to cajun to jazz, and is a perfect choice for an intimate concert in this wonderful Garden haven. As well, if you haven’t caught on yet, I’m recommending you visit the Botanical Garden this weekend in conjunction with this free outdoor concert. I hadn’t been since I was a wee lad, but having visited a few times now in recent years, I can’t say enough about its affect on mind, soul and appreciation for nature, right here in the city. Bring your camera, bring your zen and immerse yourself in a floral smorgasbord from the 4 corners of the world.

Botanical Garden

The Good: 

  1. You’ll hear some extraordinary music, for free. Enough said.
  2. You’ll grant yourself a break from the normal noise, movement and cement of the city… right in the middle of the city!
  3. You’ll be supporting your local community, local artists and local workers. And that just feels good.

The Bad:

  1. Ideally you’ll spend a lot of time walking and soaking up all that the Garden has to offer… If it’s raining, walking is not the #1 activity I like to do. Fingers crossed for Mother Nature’s cooperation therefore.
  2. The Chinese Garden is closed for major repairs this summer. That sucks.
  3. The International Mosaiculture Exhibition is no longer there and that was a seriously good piece of eye candy!

The Useful:

  1. Botanical Garden, Temporary Access Map during nearby construction, 514-872-1400.
  2. Official Website (and link for this particular show).
  3. Link to Cocktail Time at the Garden schedule (another musical initiative every Thursday, Friday & Saturday).

Pro Tip:

  • If you can imagine yourself hitting the Garden more than once, or hitting other Montréal City-run attractions this summer, do yourself a favour and buy a Carte Accès. You’ll save money. And that, my friends, is good fiscal policy.

AROUND: Morrisburg’s Long Sault Parkway

The first, and definitely not last, AROUND from our near and dear neighbour, Ontario. I recently had the pleasure of visiting the Long Sault Parkway for the first (adult) time and I was blown away. Not only is it damn close to Montréal (think less than an hour), but it’s steeped in history, beauty and a plethora of things to do. I spent a weekend camping at Woodlands Beach and partook in regular camping fun including an inordinate amounts of S’mores, playing in the sand, boating on the St. Lawrence Seaway, peering down upon disappearing roads in the clear waters, getting schooled in Canadiana and of course, a little libationary fun. Long Sault is close enough to drive to for an afternoon BBQ and far enough to feel like you’ve travelled away on vacation. The Long Sault Parkway runs from the towns of Long Sault to Ingleside, Ontario and a series of bridges connect 11 islands. These islands were once the high points in this valley before the entire area was flooded to expand the St. Lawrence Seaway. Those of you familiar with Upper Canada Village will be intrigued to know that this Canadiana village was initially developed with displaced homes from the flooded area. Also, if you do go to Upper Canada Village, make sure to get in line for the fresh bread!

Long Sault

The Good:

  1. You’ll be in Ontario so go ahead and hit the LCBO to pick up some wicked Ontario microbrews for your sojourn in Long Sault. If you can, try Cruiser by Amsterdam – it may just be the perfect summer-camping, all-day-session, love-your-BBQ kind of beer.
  2. It’s close, yet it’s in a foreign land (just kidding.. not really… ok a little).
  3. The old roads that disappear gently into the seaway (top left photo in the collage above) provide the perfect place for kids to play in, for you to plant a couple of chairs or to play a little water frisbee.

The Bad:

  1. If yer expecting tropical waters then please reset yer expectations. While not freezing, it’ll wake you up!
  2. Although there are quite a few spots, the campgrounds do get booked up so I suggest calling ahead.
  3. The sand is not Cuban. Expect less Carribean talcum powder sand, and more riverside heavy sand.

The Useful:

Pro Tip:

  • If you head down to Marina Bay, either by boat or car, do yourself a favour and sneak a walk a little east along Upper Canada Village Road to a secluded beach. Unpack picnic. Relax. Revel.  

“Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and enjoy the journey.”
– Babs Hoffman | b.1931 | All-American Girls Professional Baseball Player

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