GATINEAU, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - Jan. 29, 2016) - Canadian Heritage

People of all ages came out to join the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, as she officially launched Winterlude this morning. Minister Joly was accompanied by Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin, Mayor of Gatineau, and Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa, among others.

Winterlude is an event that visitors eagerly look forward to each year. It is an opportunity for hundreds of thousands of Canadians to enjoy an array of activities taking place from January 29 to February 15 at three official Winterlude sites: Jacques-Cartier Park in Gatineau, and Confederation Park and the Rideau Canal Skateway in Ottawa.

The festivities start this evening at Crystal Garden in Confederation Park with Canadian superstar Gregory Charles. Popular Canadian artists will offer entertainment every Friday and Saturday evening at the Sub-Zero Concert Series. Visitors will also be able to see ice sculptures and works of artists inspired by Canada's flora and fauna.

With its larger-than-life snow slides, Snowflake Kingdom in Jacques-Cartier Park is an ideal location for sports and winter games enthusiasts. This is also where visitors will get to meet the famous Ice Hog family.

The Rideau Canal Skateway, the world's largest skating rink, will once again host some of Winterlude's classic activities, including the Triathlon and the Annual Bed Race. Winterlude partners are also presenting a variety of activities at venues across the region.

We wish to thank Winterlude's official partners: CIBC, the main sponsor of the Rideau Canal Skateway; Enbridge, which sponsors skating shows and the free pancake breakfast at Marion Dewar Place; OLG, which offers the free Winterlude OLG Sno-Bus shuttle service between the official Winterlude sites; and Metro Ontario, the exclusive sponsor of the Winterlude Volunteer Program.


Quick Facts

  • Two of the official sites will focus on specific themes: "Discover the Great Canadian North" at Jacques-Cartier Park and "Discover Canada's Flora and Fauna" at Confederation Park.
  • On the road to the 150th anniversary of Confederation, Winterlude will also highlight some major historic moments, including the centennial of women's suffrage (along the Rideau Canal Skateway) and the 175th birthday of Sir Wilfrid Laurier and the Franklin expedition (in Jacques-Cartier Park's Maison Charron).
  • At Confederation Park, where the 29th International Ice-Carving Competition will be held, the National Research Council of Canada will present a majestic sculpture made of 100 blocks of ice to mark the organization's 100th anniversary.


"People in Canada's Capital Region have every reason to be proud of this wonderful celebration, where winter magic, fun and friendship come out to play. This year, let's commemorate defining moments of our history, while having fun and celebrating our country's nature, climate and rich culture. I invite Ottawa-Gatineau's residents and visitors to take part in the festivities and enjoy everything Winterlude has to offer!"

- The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage

"Gatineau is proud to present Snowflake Kingdom, the biggest winter playground on the continent, co-produced with Canadian Heritage! An eclectic program awaits kids of all ages at Snowflake Kingdom for this 38th edition of Winterlude. Its giant slides and sculptures, beautifully lit up after dark, will awe people of all ages both day and night. The third weekend will be marked by a visit from none other than Snowtime! 3D team! I invite families from Gatineau, Ottawa and visitors to our beautiful region to come experience the magic of winter at Gatineau's Snowflake Kingdom!"

-Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin, Mayor of Gatineau

"Winterlude is an exciting time to explore and enjoy Ottawa, for both visitors and residents alike. With three City partner sites-at Lansdowne Park, City Hall and Shenkman Arts Centre-the festival gets bigger and better every year."

-Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa

Associated Links

Program for Winterlude 2016 Unveiled - Start Planning Your Winter Outings Today!


Winterlude Is Coming! Be Part of the Team that Makes It All Happen!

Stay Connected

Follow Winterlude on Twitter (#Winterlude), Facebook and Instagram.

Contact Information:

Christine Michaud
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage

Media Relations
Canadian Heritage