On Friday, July 19th, Ontario Parks wants you to get outside and reconnect with nature. Healthy Parks Healthy People is an annual event that offers free day-use entry to all currently operating provincial parks across Ontario. It encourages everyone to visit the parks, spend time with family, and be active outdoors. Here are 10 of our favourite parks and events, but be sure to check out the complete list here.
Visit Ontario Provincial Parks free of charge for this annual event
At Bon Echo there will be a yoga class at 9:30am and a guided walk at 1:00pm. Also, take some time to check out Mazinaw Rock, which features over 250 Indigenous pictographs.
At Bonnechere the day starts with yoga at 9:30am, followed by a mindful walk at 11:00am. Things pick up with a photo scavenger hunt at 1:30pm, and the activities end with “tree cookie” painting at 2:30.
Although Grundy Lake doesn’t have any events planned, they always have fishing, hiking, canoeing, kayaking, and great beaches to enjoy.
From 9:30am - 11:30am, participate in a Bio Blitz, where you get to help the Park Biologist observe, record, and catalogue different types of wildlife. Then at 2:00pm participate in some arts and crafts—all materials will be supplied.
Although no specifics have been released yet, Killbear will have activities going on throughout the day to keep you busy. That is, if their hiking, fishing, canoeing, and kayaking doesn’t already take up all your time.
Start your day off with some guided journaling at 10:30am and keep the creativity flowing by painting a miniature paddle at 1:00pm, and from 2:30pm-4:00 drop in to paint a “tree cookie”.
Algonquin is offering free two-hour rentals of canoes, paddle boards, and bikes throughout the day, as well as activities specifically for kids, such as a program all about bears.
From 10:00am to noon, a shoreline clean up will be held to help keep the park clean, not only for us humans, but for all the wildlife that calls the park home. Later that evening, a trail running for beginners workshop will be held at both 6:00pm and 7:00pm.
Arrowhead is another park that does not have any activities planned, but it is worth the trip for their variety of activities offered on a daily basis. They offer bike, canoe, kayak, and stand up paddle board rentals. Arrowhead also has some amazing hiking trails that vary in length from 1km to 7km. There is even a 2km trail that leads to Stubb's Falls.
Last but not least, if you are staying in the GTA this weekend, make your way to Bronte Creek for a day packed full of activities. From 8:30 am to 7:00pm there is always an event going on, everything from pilates, to slack lining, to learn to camp activities, there is something for everyone.