Niagara Day Tour Blog
RE-ENACTMENT AT FORT GEORGE
History fans in the hundreds from all over North America converged upon Niagara-on-the-Lake last weekend to commemorate the Battle of Fort George.
The Battle of Fort George was one of the most significant battles in Niagara during the War of 1812 and last weekend was the 202nd anniversary of this historic event.
Hundreds of soldiers in full battle attire completed re-enactments on both Saturday and Sunday which included musket firings, artillery demonstrations and various music and other presentations.
The piccolos and drums sounded great playing authentic period music. This event was a commemoration of the 202nd anniversary of the Battle of Fort George. Re-enactors from all over North America came together in Fort George. Battle re-enactments were scheduled both on Saturday and Sunday, July 11 and 12, 2015. Weekend programming included musket firings, artillery demonstrations, music presentations and more inside Fort George.
NIAGARA FALLS UNDER DEEP FREEZE
The extreme cold temperatures this winter have partially frozen the worlds most powerful waterfall Niagara Falls. The Great Lakes network have now reached around 89% coverage in ice which is one of the largest ice coverage's across the great lakes in recorded history.
Massive ice chunks formed at the base of the falls are a product of freezing mist spray which is ever present with the thousands of tonnes of water cascading over the falls every minute.
These house sized lobes of ice form seasonally at the base of the Canadian and American Falls.
In 1912 three people died when the ice bridge they were all standing on collapsed. After that tragedy visitors were no longer permitted to venture onto the ice formations. Today, barriers are a clear indicator of how close you are permitted to get to the falls..
ICE CLIMBER FIRST TO CONQUER NIAGARA FALLS
47 year old expert ice climber Will Gadd has been the first person to scale a wall of ice at the edge of the world famous Canadian Horseshoe Falls. Many people have braved going over the falls but Gadd is the first person ever to scale the Falls. Gadd who is from Canmore in Alberta completed this amazing feat on January 27th 2015 and was followed shortly afterwards by his climbing partner Sarah Hueniken (34 years old) who became the first woman to scale the falls.
The route they took was close to where the edge of the Canadian Horseshoe Falls meets Goat Island and right next to the border of Canada and the United States. Goat Island is the island which separates the Canadian Falls with the American Falls. The centre of the Falls had not completely frozen over hence why they completed this feat from the edge of the falls. Gadd had previously scaled British Columbia’s Helmcken Falls which at 141m tall is considered one of the worlds most difficult climbs.
You can see footage of Gabb’s ascent on Niagara Falls by visiting our Facebook page
Floral Showhouse inspires many with new spring display
The Floral Showhouse has been a popular stop for many local Ontario residents and international tourists for the last 70 years in Ontario’s favourite tourist destination of Niagara Falls. Their latest Spring display has recently been unveiled by the Niagara Parks Commission and features lush greenery as well as various bright and colourful arrangements. A visit to view these stunning displays can help rejuvenate the moods of visitors suffering from the winter blues. The Spring display includes calceolaria, cyclamen, Cineraria, Primula, Schizanthus and various tropical plants. The ever present tropical songbirds will also add to the atmosphere and vibrancy of this treasured facility.
The Floral Showhouse – located at 7145 Niagara Parkway is open from 9:30am to 5:00pm daily and has parking available on-site. Admission is $5 for adults (age 13+) and $3.75 for children (age 6-12). Children under 6 years are free to enter.
Their spring display will run from 17th January to 27th March 2015.
New Years Eve in Niagara Falls
Superstar country singer Keith Urban to spearhead New Years Eve celebrations in Niagara Falls this year.
The four-time Grammy Award winning singer and country music star Keith Urban will headline the 2 and a half hour countdown in Niagara Falls to bring in the New Year. Urban will be joined by actor and singer Nick Jonas along with the local favourite and young up-and-coming artist Shawn Mendes who shot to stardom when he released his hit single “Life of the Party” earlier this year.
The live broadcast will be hosted by Cheryl Hickey and will commence at 10pm on Global on December 31st. The two and a half hour spectacular is expected to draw in around 60,000 fans on site and around 3.5 million viewers on Global TV. Many Canadians consider this to be the most anticipated New Years Eve party nationwide bringing Niagara Falls once again into the spotlight of the nation.
Winter Festival of Lights
The annual 32nd Ontario Power Generation Winter Festival of Lights has been drawing in the crowds this year with its spectacular illumination displays and light extravaganza. The illumination of the Falls and also the lighting display occur from 5pm to Midnight every day until January 12th. The main lighting displays are along the Niagara Parkway, in Queen Victoria Park and Dufferin Islands Reserve. There is no fee to see the lights although a suggested donation of $5-$10 per car is collected at the exit of the Dufferin Islands. The proceeds are used for the ongoing maintenance and refurbishment of the lighting displays also to purchase additional illumination.
This weekend you can also attend circus performances by Zero Gravity Circus who perform with their LED, Fire and Stilt artist between 6-9pm on Friday and Saturday night in front of the Edgewaters Restaurant. Santa Claus will make his appearance on Friday night between 5.30-7.30pm at the Dufferin Islands and the Fireworks display is also scheduled on Friday night at 9pm over the Falls.
Hornblower Cruise - Niagara Falls
Hornblower has recently announced it will be extending it’s first operating season until the end of November.
Traditionally the Niagara boat tour in previous years (the Maid of the Mist) had been ending it’s season on October 24th every year. This year – new company Hornblower which in May 2014 has taken over from the Maid of the Mist will continue to operate tours for an unprecedented 5 week extension from previous years. The hours of operation will be reduced from November 17 through November 30th from 10am – 4pm every day.
“We understand that the boat tour is a significant demand generator for tourists. Pushing our operation season to the end of November allows visitors the chance to experience the iconic boat tour and the unique perspective of Niagara Falls that we provide”, explains Mory DiMaurizio, General Manager of Hornblower Niagara Cruises.
Also Hornblower Cruises will be getting in the festive spirit for Halloween and are offering guests a free cruise between 4pm – 5pm on Saturday October 25th and Sunday October 26th when they come dressed in Halloween costumes. This special offer is available for both adults and children. For more information visit www.niagaracruises.com
Fireworks Displays in Niagara Falls
If you haven’t seen the fireworks displays over Niagara Falls they are truly a sight to behold. Each display is around 10 minutes in length and will light up the sky above Niagara Falls. The displays run from May right though until the end of November with over 80 displays in total.
Every Friday, Sunday and Public holiday at 10pm sharp you will be able to witness a fantastic spectacle over what many believe to be one of the worlds natural wonders. This longest running fireworks series received additional support through Tourism Partnership of Niagara funding.
This year there will be bonus displays on Wednesday nights through July and August.
July 30, 2014
Niagara County Fair
The 2014 Niagara County Fair starts today Wednesday July 30th and runs though the long weekend to Sunday August 3rd. The fair is organised by the Cornell Co-operative of the Niagara County and it incorporates a large variety of music, rides, shows, food and special events every day.
There are many returning events from last year – such as the antique tractor parade on Friday, the Beer and Bands on Friday and Saturday, the firefighters parade on Saturday and the classic car show on Sunday. New to the fair this year is the Agriculture Discovery Zone which has interactive displays about agriculture and food systems in Niagara County. Also the Demonstration Garden is new this year which teaches about vertical gardens, beneficial insects and garden maintenance.
A very popular returning show is the “K-9’s In Flight – Frisbee Dog and High Jump Show”. Fairgoers can watch art being created from logs with the Sawdogs Chainsaw Carver and enjoy daily workshops from the Air Sculpture Balloon Art. The Niagara County fair is not to be missed!
There will be a Karaoke contest on Wednesday and Thursday on the main stage, and 90 West will perform Friday night. Cock Robin will perform there on Saturday night.
So get down to the Niagara County Fair and enjoy the fun and festivities over the long weekend. Net proceeds from this event support CCE-Niagara County Programming and benefit families and children of the Niagara County.
Ghost Tours start this Friday at Fort Erie, Ontario
This Friday is the opening day of the very popular “Friday Night Frights” at Old Fort Erie. Visitors to the Fort can experience the late night antics and listen to the bone-chilling tales of the ghosts of soldiers killed during the War of 1812 on the grounds of the Fort - many whose bodies still remain there. Interpreters in full costume will guide visitors through the grounds with lanterns as they entertain with spooky stories from the past and historic tales of the fallen soldiers.
To help set the mood for the opening this Friday night – not only will it be a full moon, but it is also Friday the 13th.
To this day, Old Fort Erie retains the dubious distinction of the site of the bloodiest battlefield on Canadian soil. This British strongpoint was taken by the Americans several times between 1812-1814. It was eventually destroyed by the Americans on November 5th, 1814, when they withdrew to Buffalo for the approaching winter. In 1937, the reconstruction of the Fort began, and was funded by the Ontario Provincial Government, The Federal Government and the Niagara Parks Commission. It was restored to its original state and re-opened on July 1st 1939. Today it is owned and operated by the Niagara Parks Commission. In the second week of August every year – hundreds of participants engage in the re-enactment of the Siege of Fort Erie which draws thousands of spectators.
The scheduled dates for the “Friday Night Fright” ghost tours are Friday June 13th, Friday July 4th and Friday August 15th. Admission for the tour is $5 per person and tours start at 9.00pm. Don’t miss out on all the excitement happening in the Niagara Region. Book your trip with Niagara Day Tours to see this fascinating region.
A New Era Begins in Niagara Falls
After a 168 year history – the Maid of the Mist steamboat company lost its contract to operate on the Canadian side of the Niagara River with its final sailing on October 31st 2013. It was the end of an era for this world famous and iconic tourist attraction which had long been the number one activity in Niagara Falls, Canada.
However, if you did not get the opportunity to experience Niagara Falls by water – don’t despair! Hornblower Niagara Cruises has taken over as the must-do activity in Niagara Falls, Ontario, giving hundreds of thousands of tourists every year the thrill of a lifetime.
Don’t miss their unforgettable cruise up the Niagara River, past the American Falls and up to the base of the mighty Canadian Horseshoe Falls. The long awaited opening date of 15 April 2014 was actually delayed due to heavy ice conditions on the Great Lakes and Niagara River.
Hornblower delayed the opening for a full month until the morning of May 15th 2014, making this their actual opening date. The opening was a great success and they continue to thrill visitors with this wet and wild attraction.
Hornblower’s state-of-the-art catamarans can accommodate up to 700 passengers per cruise. Guests can enjoy an interior viewing area where they stay dry – or venture onto the outside decks to brave the spray and roar of the mighty Horseshoe Falls. The catamarans come fully equipped with washrooms and also serve refreshments on many of the cruises.
Hornblower offers four types of cruises: The most common is the Voyage to the Falls Boat Tour which is a 30 minute experience taking guests up the Niagara River to the base of the Canadian Falls. Departures are every 15 minutes from May 15th to October 24th and every 30 minutes from October 25th to November 16th.
The Sunset Cocktail Cruise is a 1 hour evening experience that offers a scenic viewing of the Falls, departing every night at 8pm until October 24th. The Falls Illumination Cruise is a 1 hour nighttime experience where you can view the Falls under Illuminated lights, departing every night at 9.30pm until October 24th.
The Falls Fireworks Cruise is also a nighttime experience with Fireworks and Illumination viewing, departing at 9.30pm every Friday, Sunday and Public Holiday until October 24th.
Be one of the first to experience a Hornblower Cruise in 2014. Niagara Day Tour includes the Voyage to the Falls Boat Tour so you can get up close and personal with one of the greatest natural wonders in North America – Niagara Falls. We look forward to welcoming you.
Reserve your Niagara Falls day trip from Toronto here.
See the current Niagara Falls Blog 2016.