Welcoming home the Wakami Wailers

As part of Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary celebrations, we’re very excited to announce a concert tour featuring our very own Wakami Wailers!

The Wakami Wailers are long-time camper favourites, but many fans don’t realize the band first met when working at Wakami Lake Provincial Park in 1981.

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Nature journaling — just try not to be inspired

This article was written (and illustrated!) by Courtney Lafleur, Senior Park Clerk at Murphys Point Provincial Park.

Time spent in nature can have a profound and lasting positive effect on our physical and mental health, and journaling has long been heralded for its own health benefits. Put them together and you’ve got nature journaling; an activity that inspires creativity, mindfulness and connectivity with nature.

In the simplest terms, nature journaling is about looking at the natural world around you and recording your thoughts and observations. You don’t need a lot to get started, just a piece of paper and something to write with.

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David Archibald’s “The Happiest Camper in Ontario” concert tour

As a part of our 125th anniversary, Ontario Parks is excited to announce a province-wide, 30-park concert tour featuring singer-songwriter David Archibald!

David will be performing five brand new songs this summer that he has written in celebration of the anniversary!
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Go wild for art!

Not knowing the conventions of beauty, he found it all beautiful.

— A.Y. Jackson speaking about his friend Tom Thomson

What better way to help celebrate Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary this summer than by exploring our parks’ rich art heritage and creating your own personal masterpiece?

It’s time to Go Wild for Art in provincial parks!

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Inspired by Quetico

Today’s post comes from one of Quetico Provincial Park’s 2017 Artists-in-Residence. Heather M. O’Connor is a freelance journalist and children’s author. She is currently working on a middle-grade novel and two picture books, inspired by her 2017 residency. 

I hear the first loon call the moment my foot touches the path.

It’s magical, the sound of the loon. One part greeting, one part grief. This GTA girl, far from home, is grateful for the welcome.

I hurry to the water’s edge, scanning the surface, but I’m too late. Its spell cast, the loon has vanished.

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Ecosystems and music

Not sure exactly what “ecological integrity” means? Today’s post from Park Biologist Shannon McGaffey explains how ecological integrity is like music.

Synergy: the creation of a whole that is bigger than the sum of the individual parts

If you are listening to a symphony, you are not listening to two violins, one piano, three flutes, etc. You are listening to music, an art that breaches the realms of spirituality. Music naturally generates measurable energy, but also produces energy beyond that, an energy that humans can feel, but just can’t quite grasp and understand.

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Killarney is my muse

Today’s post was written by photographer Rob Stimpson, a long-time lover of Killarney Provincial Park’s wild spaces. All photographs below are copyright to robstimpson.com.

Killarney has been part of my life for years. It was one of the first canoe trips after moving from Montreal to Toronto in the late ’80s. The images I shot on those trips (long before becoming a professional photographer) may be amateurish in composition and lighting, but still hold strong memories of a place that I have returned to time and time again.
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Kakabeka Falls inspires student art

Big thanks to the students of Valley Central Public School, especially Sara Miller (grade 7) and Trenten Scott (grade 8), for writing this post about their recent trip to Kakabeka Falls.

In September, students from the Valley Central School Learning Academies visited Kakabeka Falls Provincial Park for some outdoor learning.

The main intention of the trip was to plant trees in case the Emerald Ash Borer spreads into their forests. However the students also took the time to sketch landscapes, rock formations, trees, and — of course — the beautiful falls themselves.

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Lessons in nature at Kakabeka Falls

Big thanks to the students of Valley Central Public School, especially Olivia Davis (grade 7) and Paige Arnold (grade 8), for writing this post about their recent trip to Kakabeka Falls.

On September 19 students from Valley Central Public School headed to Kakabeka Falls Provincial Park in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

The students were excited to visit the park and take part in some outdoor learning activities.

Valley Central Grade 7 and 8 students are part of a new and exciting learning opportunity called Learning Academies.  Learning Academies are designed to engage students in community connected experiential learning opportunities. The program is focused on community sustainability, including exploring our natural and built environment, and fine arts.

As students, we are engaged in documenting our learning through e-portfolios, blogs, and social media as we learn to become responsible digital citizens and 21st century learners.

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