Hamiltonians love festivals, be it spring, summer, fall or winter. Throughout
the year, over 50 different festivals and annual events are put on by various local groups.
There's no better way to enjoy yourself than to take in a festival.
Around the Bay Road Race
Hamilton's Around the Bay 30k Road Race is the oldest on the continent, first run in 1894, three years before the Boston Marathon. It has been run and won by the best from around the world, including Olympic gold medallists Attend the Dofasco Pasta Dinner, Saturday night at Copps Coliseum with great speakers.
Royal Botanical Gardens' Lilac Festival
End of May
The festival features some 800 varieties of the fragrant shrubs in a multitude of colors. The Royal Botanical Gardens' three other outdoor display gardens and the RBG Centre include a restaurant and gift shop. Saturday, Sunday and Monday at the Arboretum's Lilac Dell, the world's largest collection of lilacs. Entertainment, food and more.
The Roger's Spring Music Festival
The four day Spring Music Festival draws international talent and draws attention to local artists with 12 events at eight locations throughout Hamilton and Burlington. Annual musicians conference at the Sheraton Hamilton is free for the public to attend (first time in 2006).
Dundas International Buskingfest
A carnival atmosphere with top street performers from all over the world participating in street theatre, music, magic and more in the historic Town of Dundas.Runs Firday evening, Saturday & Sunday afternoon & evening.
Re-Enactment of Battle of Stoney Creek
Bring the family to commemorate one of the most important events in Canadian history, this battle in the War of 1812. Other activities include games, live music and fireworks.
Iris & Peony Celebration
Hamilton Pride Festival
This week long festival celebrates gays, lesbians and other sexual orientations. Events include Mr. & Miss Hamilton Pride Pageant, All You Can Eat Pasta Fundraiser , The Dating Game: Gay Edition fundraiser , Gala Reception & Pride Awards. Pride Parade. Various locations. 905-528-0207x45
Hamilton International Tattoo, The
Central Canada's premier annual military tattoo,. Thrill to the sounds of the Pipes and Drums, Brass Bands, and some of the world's finest military and civilian performers.
Professional Bull Riders
A fantastic benefit rodeo featuring bronc riding, barrel racing, bull riding and much more. 2 evenings.
The Hamilton Highland Games & Scottish Festival
Canadian Pipe Band Championships, highland dance competition, heavy events, childrens area, beer tent. Cost: $5. At Ancaster Fairgrounds
Hamilton Port Days
Port Days event is a collection of nautically themed activities including displays, exhibits, contests, giveaways, food & beverage and entertainment. Attractions include the Summer Water Sports water ski team, a Classic Car Cruise, land and water tours, a children's area, burgers and a beer garden. Events center around the Canada Marine Discovery Centre grounds on Pier 8 at the foot of James Street North. Contact Hamilton Port Authority at 905-525-4330.Cancelled for 2009
Paws In The Garden
Enjoy a visit to the Royal Botanical Gardens with "man's best friend" for a pawsitively great time! In addition to the gardens and trials, there'll be plenty fo fun, food and festivities for fido and the whole family.
Canada Day Celebrations
Join us for an evening of entertainment. Tune into Oldies 1150, 102.9 K-Lite FM or 820 CHAM for your musical fireworks! Music begins at 7pm. Free.
It's Your Festival
annual event that celebrates Canada's birthday with arts and crafts, international foods, a midway and musical performances. Hamilton Folk Arts Heritaage Council. Admission is free. 1 905 525-2297
Bustles and Biscuits Festival
July & August (Sundays & Holidays)
Leisurely afternoon enjoying tea & homemade tea biscuits at the Gillen House. Enjoy period fashions in a mini-fashion show at 2pm. Tour through some of Ontario's oldest buildings including the pioneer home, artisan workshop, church, school, train station and store dating from 1790 to 1925. Cost: Adults $7 / Children 6-12 $4. Sundays and holidays from 12:30pm - 4pm.
Hamilton Waterfest Dragonboat Race
Come see more than 30 dragonboat teams race across the bay for fun, for glory, and to raise funds in support of Bay Area Restoration Council & Lively Dragon (BARC)'s programs.
Royal Botanical Gardens - Hendrie Park Gardens
Gore Park Summer Music Festival
Top Canadian musical talent on main stage, Kidsfest, guitar clinics, Art in the Park vendors and contests, gala opening ($), local food vendors, Hamilton talent hunt competition for local vocal artists. Downtown Hamilton BIA
Festival Of Friends - Hamilton
With four stages of musical concerts and workshops, the annual Festival of Friends is a "Celebration of the Arts". Fee Admission Gage Park, off LawrenceRd by the Roselawn Lawn Bowling Club
Valens Beach Party
Games, sand sculpture contest, prizes and more. uns from 11:30am - 3:30pm. Cost: Car and driver $7 / Each passenger $3 / Maximum per car $16
Westfield's Ice Cream Festival
Experience the fun and nostalgia of ice cream from pioneer and Victorian times to the Rock & Roll era. Live music, horse and wagon rides, antique cars, magic show, period dancing, crafts, games and living history. Sun &and Mon from 10am - 4pm. Cost: Adult $9.50 / Children 6-12 $5.50 Free parking. Hamilton Conservation Authority
Anne of Green Gables™ Day
Become part of Avonlea and the life of Canada's favourite literary character, entertaining activities for the whole family. 10am - 4pm. Anne look-alike contest at 1pm. (with advance Registration) 1-800-883-0104.
Brott Summer Music Festival
May to August
The 20th anniversary season of one of Canada's largest music festivals, it features classical, jazz, pops and chamber music concerts. Boris Brott conducts the National Academy Orchestra. Telephone: (905) 525-SONG Toll free: 1-888-475-9377 Fax: (905) 526-9934
Gore Park Music Festival
Flamboro Downs Breeders Stakes
Art Gallery of Hamilton International Film and Video Festival: photophobia
Now entering its eighth year, Hamilton's annual celebration of film, video and contemporary media is free of restrictions, free of themes and provides audiences with the opportunity to view the unexpected and the experimental on select Thursday evenings during the month of August.
Westfield Ice Cream Festival
Taste ice cream from pioneer and Victorian times to the Rock & Roll era. Live music, horse and wagon rides, antique cars, magic show, period dancing, crafts, games and living history make the perfect topping for the perfect family outing. Adults $9.50, Seniors/Disabled $8.50, Youth 6-12 years of age $5.50, Children 5 years and under are free, Parking is free. Runs from 10am -4pm. Westfield Heritage Village (Rockton)
Hamilton Mardigras Carnival
The Hamilton Mardi Gras Carnival features a number of lively festivities, including an authentic Caribbean parade (starts at Jackson St, behind city hall and then north on James), carnival games and rides (at Bayrfront Park), cultural dance performances, live music, a dance party, exhibitions and more.
Alternating years between Flint Michigan and Hamilton, the CanUSA games have run since 1958, through the joint efforts of the Canadian and United States Amateur Athletic Unions. 2006 & 2008 games are in Hamilton. (905) 546-2424 ext.2537
Festival of Friends
Creative Arts has hosted this FREE Admission musical talent event, held in Gage Park ,
Brott Summer Music Festival - Contemporary Festival - High Tea
Venues range from traditional indoor theatres to outdoor settings and "rooms with views" at Dundurn Castle, Ancaster Old Mill, Royal Botanical Gardens. Single tickets from $8-$35. Subscription packages are available.
Hamilton Fringe Festival
Hamilton's Fringe Festival draws performers and companies from across Canada and as far away as India. The festival is dedicated to presenting new and emerging artists who perform innovative and exciting theatre. The revenue from ticket sales *$8-$10) goes directly to performers. Venues seat between 50 -100 seats and are general admission. Avid Fringers can buy a Festival Pass, good for 10 shows (2 people) at a cost of $60.
Dundas Cactus Festival
Dundas is internationally recognized for the Cacti produced by the local Ben Veldhuis Cactus Greenhouses, and the 3 day "Cactus Festival". Includes a parade, a town-wide sidewalk sale, and entertainment
Confederation Cup XXX at Flamboro Downs
The Confederation Cup, running for over 30 years is the finest day in Canadian harness racing has to offer.
Winona Peach Festival
This 3 day 40-year old festival attracts 230,000 visitors. The event includes "Canada's Traveling Theme Park" midway from Robertson Amusements Magicians, Children's Entertainers, Young Performers, Food sampling with 92 different foods and 28 different beverages, and a commercial area with echibits and items for sale. Meet the Winona Peach Queen Pageant, crowned each July. Free Admission Take the QEW just east of Stoney Creek to the Fifty Road exit, then south to Barton St.
Flamboro Downs Breeders Stakes
Festitalia is an opportunity to share with all Hamiltonians the Italian love of life and showcase fine food, wine, music, culture, the arts and faith. Events include Soccer tournaments, concerts, regional food nights, Mass at the Cathedral, Author's night and Champion's Dinner. 905-383 3551
Hamilton Annual Mustard Festival
Labout Day weekend, September
Three days of entertainment, food, patios and fun, with free admission in the International Village,
Westitalia'06 - Where everybody's Italian
This 3 day festival, in Westdale Village. 905-526-6134
Locke Street Festival
Annual street festival on Locke Street South (LoSo). 905-523-5018
Fall fair at the Binbrook fairgrounds: 905-692-4003
Apple Festival at Puddicombe Estate Farms & Winery
Annual fall fair, celebrating the apple harvest. Enjoy the apple pie, apple cider and the apple of your eye. Many activities. 905-643-1015
Anne of Green Gables Day at Westfield Heritage Village
Step into the pages of L.M. Montgomery's masterpiece and become part of Avonlea and the life of Canada's favourite literary character by enjoying a variety of entertaining activities for the whole family. Anne look-alike contest at 1pm (registrations required in advance). Ironwood guest catered by the Ancaster Lions Club.
Since 1850, the present Ancaster Agricultural Society was organized and held its first fair. Since 1950 has held the 3 day Fair at its current location.. Admission: Adults $7, kids to Grade 8 $1.
West 49 Canadian Open World Cup Skateboard Event
DC Launch Party at the Hamilton Convention Centre, Billabong Street Course, Pizza Pizza Rail Rumble, Vert Skaters Invitational Events at Copps Coliseum
The Great Romantics Festival
The City of Hamilton in association with The American Liszt Society and School of the Arts, McMaster University presents the International Great Romantics Festival. The Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra, which will present an orchestral concert, and piano, lieder, and organ recitals take up much of the rest of the festival. Registration is $125, banquet at Hamilton Convention Centre is $65.
Mid-Nov to mid-January
The highlight of this 10-week annual festival is the dazzling Angel Trail, which follows the Wine Route from Hamilton to St. Catherine's and is perfect for a leisurely drive through a winter wonderland. The festival has numerous events, including a Santa Claus parade, a festival of trees, dinner theatre, concerts and more. Be sure to sample the goods at the participating wineries.
Rockton World's Fair
Rockton Musical Ride, Thrill Show Productions Demolition Derby, Craft Show and Sale, Antique Machinery in Motion, Karaoke Contest, Campbell Amusements Midway (Friday Unlimited rides for $25.00
The Chrysanthemum Show is an amazing floral display created by some of Hamilton's finest Horticulture Staff. The display will be breathtaking featuring over 100 varieties of Chrysanthemums and over 75,000 blooms! "A Walk in the Woods" is the theme for 2006.
Haunted Historical Halloween at Westfield Heritage Village
Bone up on your history and folklore and discover the origins and traditions of Halloween's past. Explore plays and presentations guaranteed to tantalize and enthrall the whole family. Friday & Saturday evening.
Hamilton Writers Festival
This annual event, also known as 'GritLit', brings together established and emerging Canadian literary talents in a three-day reading and writing extravaganza. Sessions cover numerous different genres, including sports, children's, international and political literatures, as well as live poetry reading events.
Victorian Christmas at Dundurn National Historic Site
Mid-Nov to end December
Dundurn Castle is decorated in Victorian Christmas splendour by the Garden Club of Hamilton, visitors will have the opportunity to learn how the MacNab family would have celebrated the season, as well as the servants who lived and worked below the stairs. Dundurn Castle open daily 12pm to 4pm. Admission is $10.00 adults, $8.00 student and seniors, $5.00 children (age 6-14), kids 5 & under are free, family rate of $25.00.
'Twas the Night Before Christmas at Westfield Heritage Village
Saturdays in December
Celebrate Christmas past from the Georgian to the modern eras and feel the warmth of the season through plays, food samples, fireworks, horse and wagon rides and a visit from Saint Nick. 5 to 9 pm