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5 Ways to Celebrate Family Day around Ottawa


5 Ways to Celebrate Family Day around Ottawa

“Family is not an important thing, it’s everything.”
— Michael J. Fox

Of course we know how important family is, but in the busy-ness of our lives it can sometimes slip our minds. That’s why Family Day is a great time to pause and remember why our families mean so much.

There are all kinds of family things we can do on this holiday, which this year is on Monday, Feb. 18. Here are 5 that won’t take you far from home.

1. E.T., courtesy of Tracy Arnett Realty

We’re thrilled to be able to sponsor a special screening of the family classic E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, which explores the touching bond that develops between a young boy and a stranded alien. Admission is free with a donation to Hospice Care Ottawa.

The movie will be shown at the Mayfair, 1074 Bank St. at 10 a.m. on Family Day. Doors will open at 9:30.

2. A skating party

The mayor’s annual Family Day skating party returns to the Rink of Dreams at city hall. The party, which runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Feb. 18, will include special guests and fun family activities inside and out. The Tim Hortons Coffee Truck will be serving free coffee and hot chocolate.

3. Billings Estate challenge

This one isn’t technically on Family Day, but it is part of Family Day weekend. On Sat. Feb. 16, the Billings Estate is holding a Mid-Winter Challenge aimed at families with children ages 10 and up. Face off against a series of challenges inspired by 19th-century winter life on the farm to see if you have what it takes to make it through.

4. Winter carnival

Head to Pushman Park in Greenboro West for some old-fashioned fun with the Family Day Winter Carnival hosted by the South Keys Greenboro Community Association. Activities include horse-drawn sleigh rides, skating challenges, a camp fire, snow games and entertainment from Orbital Talent. 

5. Last chance at Winterlude

Family Day marks the end of Winterlude. If you haven’t checked it out yet — and even if you have — there are plenty of fun things to do to say goodbye, so to speak, to winter. Some events on the go on the 18th:

  • Skating on the canal, of course, if the weather’s co-operating.

  • Sliding and so much more at Jacques Cartier Park.

  • Crystal Garden and a family-themed scavenger hunt in the ByWard Market.

  • And so much more. Check the Canadian Heritage website for all activities.

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