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Monday, August 27, 2018

Go wet and wild in Niagara; dark and starry nights at Ontario Parks to wind down summer

   One-Tank Trip for August 25/18

   (c) By Jim Fox

   As summer relentlessly continues on its course toward fall, there’s still plenty of time to enjoy some of the best road trips of the season.
   Niagara is always a fun destination and publicist Stephen Murdoch has some “getaway ideas for a last hurrah before summer ends.”
Zipping by the American and Canadian falls on the Wildplay MistRider.
   These include family friendly adventures such as jet boat tours, zip lines and Niagara Gorge hikes.
   Meanwhile, Jeff Brown of Ontario Parks suggests viewing the starry skies at the provincial parks, two of which have been designated dark sky preserves.
   Back to Niagara, rent bikes or go for a family stroll on the Niagara River Recreation Trail, a 56-kilometre paved pathway overlooking the Niagara Gorge.
   Take a road trip along the Niagara River Parkway, adjacent to the trail, between Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls.
The scenic Niagara River Parkway travels beside the falls in Niagara Falls. (Barbara Fox photo)
    The late British Prime Minister Winston Churchill called this “the prettiest Sunday afternoon drive in the world.”

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Paris on the Grand, Dogs Nest, Punkeydoodle's Corner, Crotch Lake await your visit

   One-Tank Trip for Aug. 18-18

   (c) By Jim Fox

   Want to impress or create envy among your friends and co-workers?

   Just tell them you’re planning to visit Paris, with perhaps side-trips to London, Scotland and the former Berlin.

   Paris on the Seine is wonderful at this time of year – and so is Paris on the Grand.
Paris on the Grand is a pleasant and pretty tourist destination.

   For those special-interest tourists who “collect places and destinations,” these namesakes are “one-tank trips” for people living in southern Ontario.

   The province is filled with special places that have links to historic world cities and towns – along with dozens of quirky and funny monikers.

   How about Dogs Nest, Punkeydoodle's Corner, Turkey Point, Wawa and the Ojibway’s Ochiichagwe’Babigo’Ining.

   There’s also Ball’s Falls, Bastard, Crotch Lake, Dorking, Frogmore, Happyland, New Hamburg, Pain Court and Swastika, just to name a few.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Lights, camera, action on Toronto's TIFF and movie scene

   One-Tank Trip for Aug. 11-18

    (c) By Jim Fox

   Star-struck fans don’t have to wait until next month’s celebrated film fest in Toronto – they can experience the city like a celebrity any time of the year.
   If you enjoy the movies, celebrity and entertainment news, we have some unique experiences just for you,” says Irene Knight of Tourism Toronto.
   There is no question that Toronto “is for film lovers,” she adds as the city has connections to some of this year’s best films.
The Toronto festival attracts about 500,000 people for hundreds of film showings. (Tourism Toronto – Connie Tsang)
   Guillermo del Toro’s the Shape of Water was filmed in the city and took home top honours at the Golden Globes and Oscars.
   The film’s producer, J. Miles Dale is Toronto-based and shares the Best Picture nomination with del Toro.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Bingemans celebrates 50th anniversary of Oktoberfest in Kitchener-Waterloo

Raise your Steins this October

KITCHENER, Ont. — Dust off your lederhosen and dirndls and grab your Tyrolean hats. Oktoberfest is back.
As the biggest Bavarian festival this side of Munich, Oktoberfest is a beloved autumn tradition in Kitchener — and Bingemans has been a part of the experience since 1968. Home to the largest festhalle, Kool Haus, Bingemans is looking to outdo themselves once again for the 2018 celebrations.

“Over the years we’ve been listening to what our guests want and are aiming to provide the best experience for everyone,” says Mark Bingeman, President of Bingemans. “This includes making our tents bigger, adding another tent and expanding our beer selections. We’re really excited about this year’s Oktoberfest events.”
Here are some tips to help make the best of your Oktoberfest experience:
·         Learn how to prost
A big part of Oktoberfest is beer and steins (or cans) will be full throughout the event. As they did last year, Bingemans will be featuring local craft breweries along with traditional German beer. Waterloo Brewing, Canada’s first craft brewer, will be serving their beers, including a special 50th anniversary Festbier. Two craft breweries will be chosen from eight possibilities through an online vote and will be the feature craft brews at the events. But it wouldn’t be a true Oktoberfest event without German beer. Guests will have the opportunity to try Hacker-Pschorr and Paulaner brews as well.

Parry Sound Is open for business this summer tourism season; forest fires far north

Wildfire affecting Northern Ontario is nowhere near the coastal town or surrounding villages
PARRY SOUND, Ont. (August 7, 2018) – The “Parry Sound 33” wildfire that is burning in Northern Ontario is approximately 75 kilometres from the Town of Parry Sound and surrounding villages, posing no danger to tourists wanting to visit this charming spot on beautiful Georgian Bay, say local tourism officials.
Tourism operators in the Parry Sound area with a short selling season are eager to counter detrimental media coverage that has caused confusion for travelers about where the fire actually is, and to let the world know they are open for business, says James Murphy, executive director of Explorers’ Edge, the regional tourism organization.
“The fire named “Parry Sound 33” actually refers to a northern part of the greater Parry Sound District riding and is used by Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) officials to denote an MNRF zone,” says Murphy.

Pan American Food and Music Festival returns to Toronto, Aug. 25-26, 2018

The Pan American Food and Music Festival 2018 Details:
August 25th and 26th, 2018
Yonge-Dundas Square

Women in Food Panel, Sunday, August 26th, 1:00 pm
Pan American Light Parade, Saturday, August 25th, 9:30 pm
Arepa Eating Contest, Saturday, August 25th, 4:00 pm
Caliente y Picante Food Competition, Saturday, August 25th, 6:00 pm – 7:15 pm
Seafood Fantasia Food Competition, Sunday, August 26th, 3:00 pm – 4:45 pm

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Toronto for Film Lovers or "How to Experience Toronto like a Celebrity (any time of the year)"

(News Release from Tourism Toronto)

TORONTO -- Some of this year’s best films have numerous Toronto connections.  Guillermo del Toro's The Shape of Water was filmed in the city and took home top honours at the Golden Globes and Oscars. The film’s producer, J Miles Dale is a Toronto-based producer who shares the Best Picture nomination with del Toro. 

Toronto is also home to visual FX studio Mr. X, that has credits on an impressive list of awards favourites including Mother!, Girls Trip, Mudbound, and Molly’s Game.

Other Toronto connections include Toronto native Christopher Plummer (nominated for best supporting actor in All the Money in the World) and Oscar nominated Animated Short The Breadwinner (Toronto actor Saara Chaudry voiced the lead character and Andrew Rosen, whose production company Aircraft Pictures is based in Toronto were the co-producers).
If you enjoy the movies, celebrity and entertainment news – here are some unique Toronto experiences just for you:

Who's afraid of a little arachnid?; Go bioblitzing in Ontario Parks

   One-Tank Trip for Aug. 4-18

   (c) By Jim Fox

   It’s a summer of creepy crawlers and learning all about them.
   Most people fear arachnids with their fangs, venom and predatory traits but who’s afraid of a little old spider?
All is told about the fascinating world of spiders at the ROM.
   Learn how to calm your fears – even with some 800 spider species in Ontario alone – at an exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) in Toronto.
   Then head out into the woods to get down and dirty with critters for “Summer Bioblitzes” at Ontario Parks.
   “Spiders: Fear and Fascination” is the name of the “astonishing exhibition” of more than 400 living, breathing and preserved arachnids at the ROM.