Chuck Commanda grew up part of the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg, an Algonquin First Nation. As a young boy, he helped his grandparents make birchbark canoes. Now, years later, Chuck enjoys sharing his knowledge and showcasing his skills to the public.
Chuck recently attended the “Politics of the Canoe” workshop in Winnipeg, where he says much of the discussion focused on reconciliation through the canoe.
“The canoe is a shared experience that all Indigenous and non-Indigenous people can relate to. That makes it an effective tool for reconciliation.”
Continue reading The makings and teachings of the birchbark canoe
Experience the life of a voyageur at the height of the fur trade by paddling a voyageur canoe on the beautiful Mattawa River.
Our knowledgeable guides will help you discover part of our Canadian heritage.
Continue reading Paddle like it’s 1796 at Samuel de Champlain Provincial Park!
Ready to try your hand at crosscut sawing or visit an authentic 20th-century blacksmith?
July 21-22, 2018 is the 28th anniversary of Marten River Provincial Park‘s Lumberjack Days!
Continue reading Celebrate Lumberjack Days at “The Winter Camp”
2018 marks Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary!
To commemorate this milestone, a nifty travelling exhibit celebrating our provincial park system’s major achievements will be making its way around the province.
Continue reading Our history, our future: a travelling exhibit
Ontario Parks is recognizing iconic Canadian species this year to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. Next up, we join Natural Heritage Education Specialist Dave Sproule for a chat about the ecological and cultural significance of the beaver, which became Canada’s official symbol in 1975.
We all know beavers are industrious. They builds dams, canals and sturdy homes called lodges, which are warm in winter. They repair all those dams and collect enough food to survive long northern winters.
We know beavers are well-suited to the Canadian environment. Beavers are amphibious – more at home in the water than on land — with webbed hind feet, nostrils that can close, a third see-through eyelid that protects the eye when they’re underwater, and a big flat tail that acts as rudder while swimming.
The biggest reason to celebrate the beaver during Canada150, however, is that the beaver built Canada, shaping both its historical and ecological landscape.
Continue reading The beaver: architect of biodiversity
Today’s post comes from Dave Sproule, a Natural Heritage Education Specialist in our Northeast Zone.
Can you hear the water speak? The waters of the French River have many voices.
These voices travelled the river and lived along its shores. The French River has been a conduit for people, goods, and culture for thousands of years. The voices of the river are celebrated at the spectacular French River Visitor Centre.
Continue reading Voices of the river: exploring the French River Visitor Centre
Today’s post supplied by our Natural Heritage Education Specialist Dave Sproule.
Forty-two years ago, the huge freighter Edmund Fitzgerald was wrecked on Lake Superior.
This is the story.
Continue reading The Gales of November: Remembering the Edmund Fitzgerald
Today’s post comes from Park Naturalist Christine King of Wasauksing First Nation, as she departs Killbear Provincial Park for the year.
Nishinaabeg do not have a word for “goodbye.” We say, “baa-maa-pii, gi-gaa-waa-baa-min miin-waa,” which means “until later, see you again.”
Continue reading It is never goodbye
Today’s post comes from our Natural Heritage Education Specialist (and history buff) Dave Sproule.
Thousands of boats, ships and canoes have been claimed by Lake Superior over the centuries. The Edmund Fitzgerald is simply the most famous and one of the most recent.
Continue reading Shipwrecks of Lake Superior
This month’s FREE digital wallpaper evokes Lake Superior’s “gales of November.”
Thousands of boats, ships and canoes have been claimed by Lake Superior over the centuries; the Edmund Fitzgerald is simply the most famous.
This photo was snapped on the northern shores of Lake Superior at Neys Provincial Park. If you’re a history buff, consider a 2018 visit to explore Ney’s rich cultural heritage. Explore the remains of POW Camp 100, or stop by the visitor centre (open July/August), which displays an artifact from the Edmund Fitzgerald.
Continue reading November’s digital download