The Great Pyramid of Giza (by the way, the only remaining “wonder” from the original list) and the Great Wall of China (from a list compiled more than a millennium after the original list) are certainly great–but you can’t ice skate on them! On the other hand, visit the Rideau Canal during Ottawa’s annual Winterlude and you can skate for 7.8 kilometers, turn around and do 4.8 miles back to your starting point.
Last Saturday, our underwriting director Sandy Demarest loaded two buses with NCPR listeners and off we went to spend the day in Ottawa–skating, admiring the ice sculptures, visiting museums, and eating in a variety of restaurants. [SIDEBAR: On the bus up to Ottawa I asked Sandy what she planned to do and she gave me details about lunch and dinner plans. "Anything in between?" Pause. "Work up an appetite for dinner."]
So here are pictures I collected from some of the staff and others who spent the day with us in Ottawa. It’s not too late: Winterlude is up and running until mid-February. Well worth a visit.
Okay, let ‘s get on the ice!
Most of us walked around the city after skating. My little group headed over to the Museum of Civilization, just across the river in Gatineau. Adjacent to the Museum is Jacques Cartier Park which is set up with all kinds of winter playground activities for kids.
Another “must see” at Winterlude is the ice sculpture display, centered in Confederation Park in downtown Ottawa, just a couple of blocks from the canal. Here’s a sampling of photos we took, with special emphasis on the sculptors still working on pieces to be displayed during the next few weeks:
This year, Canada invited South Korea to be a “featured” guest at the festival. Here’s a sampling of some of the special displays constructed by the South Koreans:
Confederation Park contains other special displays like these two Todd visited:
We’ re planning more day trips in the coming year…ideas? In Canada? In Vermont or New York? A Triple A ballgame in Syracuse? Montreal botanical gardens? Tulip festival in Ottawa? Burlington excursion? Let us know.