Ottawa Tourism

Ottawa in 2017

Ottawa 2017Download the info below in handy flyer format! (.pdf)

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As the capital, Ottawa is the place to be for Canada’s 150th birthday in 2017!

To view the most up-to-date list of events online, visit


  • THROUGHOUT 2016: Visit Ottawa City Hall to get your photo taken with the official countdown clock that counts down to January 1, 2017.
  • DECEMBER 31, 2016: The lighting of an Ottawa 2017 cauldron at Ottawa City Hall kicks off a family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebration, leading to a national celebration on Parliament Hill with fireworks at 8:17pm (20:17) and at midnight.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Local communities host a variety of free civic events throughout the city.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Visit the Ottawa 2017 cauldron outside Ottawa City Hall! See it lit during special events and illuminated with LED lights throughout the year.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Agri 150 is a series of unique one-day outdoor events taking place over the course of the year in rural Ottawa. Events include:
    • FEBRUARY 11-12: Fire and Ice, a fine dining experience with Chef Marc Lepine in the cozy ambiance of a tomato greenhouse.
    • MAY 13, 2017: Walk on the Wild Side is a culinary adventure which takes participants on a delightful 4-stop tour in rural Ottawa.
    • MAY 26 AND JUNE 9, 2017: The Bootleg Boat Cruise features a unique 12-course tasting menu that tells the story of taboo and illegal food and drink across 150 years in Canada.
    • JUNE 17, 2017: Reflect on the early nations who influenced Canada’s development at the Early Nations Culinary Experience, a farm-to-table culinary event along the Ottawa River.
    • JULY 15, 2017: On the Wine & Words Tour, visit three different vineyards located within Ottawa
    • AUGUST 19, 2017: Learn about agricultural technology in rural Ottawa at the Back to the Future: Farm Technology Tour.
    • JUNE 25, AUGUST 6, 20, SEPTEMBER 10, and NOVEMBER 26 2017: Sample some of the delectable local cuisine that awaits in rural Ottawa on the Secret Eats Tours.
    • AUGUST 27, 2017: From Grain to Glass features local beer tastings and educational demonstrations
    • SEPTEMBER 24, 2017: Visit some of rural Ottawa’s eco-friendly businesses and public spaces by bike on the Enviro-Cycle Tour.
    • OCTOBER 14, 2017: Celebrate the importance of good food at the Good Food Celebrations in rural Ottawa.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Ignite 150 is a series of epic stunts and gatherings throughout the capital in the form of pop-ups. Events include:
    • APRIL 8, 2017: SugarLumberFest, a gourmet sugarshack experience at Lansdowne’s Horticulture Building.
    • APRIL 19, 2017: Canada’s Drive-In welcomes 125 car-loads of movie-goers to an outdoor screening of THE ROCKET, an award-winning Canadian film about hockey legend Maurice Richard, projected against the Canada Aviation and Space Museum.
    • JUNE 15, 2017: Chef Fest, a culinary-inspired music happening where Ottawa chefs will compete for the most creative festival food bites while DJs and live bands play, all along Bank Street.
    • AUGUST 13, 2017: Surprise dance performances in water fountains across the city, Waterdance showcases local artists and outdoor spaces.
    • SEPTEMBER 9, 2017: Oyster Garden, an oyster feast in a multimedia garden on the roof of the Canadian War Museum.
    • SEPTEMBER 10, 2017: Ottawa 2017 teamed up with Escape Manor for a Canada-themed scavenger hunt and broke the world record for the World’s Largest Scavenger Hunt with 2,732 participants.
  • YEAR-ROUND: Ottawa Welcomes the World: More than 75 high commissions, embassies and international partners highlight their culture in a series of free cultural events in heritage buildings at Lansdowne:
    Ottawa Welcomes the World 

    • April 11 – Ottawa Diplomatic Association: Fundraising Food & Beverage Cultural Event
    • May 24 – Africa Day (30 countries)
    • June 11 – Delegation of the European Union (18 countries)
    • July 9 – Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Canada
    • October 2 – Aga Khan Development Network

    Note: See Canada Canada exhibit listing under “Other” category for United Kingdom and France involvement.

  • MARCH 3-4, 2017: The Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championships feature athletes on skates hurtling down a massive ice track filled with high vertical drops and hairpin turns, all set above the Rideau Canal locks!
  • MARCH 15-18, 2017: Stanley Cup 125th Anniversary Tribute: evening gala at the Canadian Museum of History (March 15); the Stanley Cup at Rideau Hall (March 16) and at Canadian Tire Centre with NHL alumni players (March 17); gala tribute concert at Canadian Tire Centre (March 17); ground-breaking ceremony on Sparks Street at Elgin for the Lord Stanley’s Gift monument (March 18).
  • MARCH 27-APRIL 2, 2017: The JUNO Awards (celebrating the best in the Canadian music industry) showcase music programming throughout the region. Peripheral programming includes:
    • JANUARY THROUGH MARCH, 2017: The Ottawa Music Micro-Grants Program, a series of 37 unique music events highlighting the local music scene, take place throughout Ottawa.
    • FEBRUARY 3, 2017: Local musicians take the stage at Barrymore’s Music Hall for the JUNO Concert Series.
    • MARCH 10-APRIL 16, 2017: Art is Art features works of visual art created by JUNO nominees at the Ottawa Art Gallery Annex at Ottawa City Hall
  • JUNE 15-JULY 23, 2017: The National Arts Centre hosts a cultural festival called Canada Scene.
  • JUNE 17-18, 2017: Red Bull Global Rallycross comes to the Canada Aviation and Space Museum! International superstars battle wheel-to-wheel over dirt, gravel, and the series’ signature 70-foot jump behind the wheel of 600 horsepower Supercars.
  • JULY 1, 2017: CIBC gala dinner with special performances at the Shaw Centre.
  • JULY 2, 2017: The Interprovincial Picnic on the Bridge offers picnic spots overlooking Parliament Hill and the Ottawa River. Stretching between Ottawa and Gatineau, the Alexandra Bridge walkway will be covered with sod to create the picnic spots!
  • JULY 7-22, 2017 (EXCLUDING JULY 10): Sky Lounge, a gourmet experience 50m in the air with Chef Stephen La Salle of feast + revel
  • JULY 27-30, 2017: Downtown Ottawa is taken over by La Machine’s roving, larger-than-life mechanical creatures. A North American first!
  • AUGUST 21, 2017: YOWttawa, an outdoor, ticketed musical event, features national and international artists including Guns N’ Roses.
  • AUGUST 27, 2017: Canada’s Table, an outdoor dining experience featuring all-Canadian dishes served by Canadian top chefs to 1,000 guests, with Parliament Hill’s Sound and Light Show as a backdrop! Preceded by local events as part of Canada’s Table culinary series
  • MAY 20-SEPTEMBER 4, 2017: On York Street in the ByWard Market neighbourhood, Inspiration Village—designed using shipping containers—highlights some of Canada’s provinces and territories with a succession of special exhibits and performing arts events.
  • JULY 16-SEPTEMBER 14, 2017: Kontinuum, an underground multimedia experience, brings a free interactive sound and light fantasy voyage into an unfinished underground light rail transit tunnel—a world first!
  • JUNE 30-OCTOBER 15, 2017: MosaïCanada 150 is an impressive free horticulture event in Jacques Cartier Park, Gatineau, featuring a one-kilometre stroll through fantastic plant sculptures. A Gatineau 2017 event.
  • OCTOBER 5-NOVEMBER 6, 2017: Mìwàte: Illumination of the Chaudière Falls highlights local First Nations culture through a vivid display of colourful lights and a rich soundscape, elevating the natural beauty of this important landmark.
  • NOVEMBER 13-18, 2017: Gamers unite at the Canadian Videogame Competition and Expo, with matches projected on buildings across the city
  • NOVEMBER 21-26, 2017: Enjoy a week of celebrations prior to the 105th Grey Cup—the annual championship game of the Canadian Football League!
  • DECEMBER 16, 2017: 2017 Scotiabank NHL100 Classic™ outdoor game: The Ottawa Senators play the Montréal Canadiens in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the very first National Hockey League game.
  • DECEMBER 31, 2017: Celebrate the magical year at the New Year’s Eve celebration Salute to 150 at Ottawa City Hall! Programming and a pyrotechnic laser show wraps up the year on Parliament Hill.


  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Visit architectural gems and enjoy special programs, exhibitions and events presented by the National Capital Commission’s partners at the Confederation Pavilions which celebrate Global Pluralism, Authors, Modern Architecture, Canadiana, and more.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: A grove of 150 native Canadian maple trees will be planted in each of Ottawa’s 23 wards.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Parks Canada offers free lockage on the Rideau Canal.
  • THROUGHOUT 2017: Special exhibitions abound at area museums and galleries:
    • Bytown Museum: A Century of Community (February 3, 2017-February 19, 2018)
    • Canadian Museum of History: Hockey (March 10-October 9, 2017); Moments From 150 Years Ago (April 21, 2017 – January 28, 2018); Canada – Day 1 (June 1, 2017-January 7, 2018)
    • Canadian War Museum: Vimy – 100 Years (April 6-November 12, 2017)
    • National Gallery of Canada: Photography in Canada 1960-2000 (April 7-September 17, 2017); Canadian and Indigenous Art: 1968 to Present (May 3, 2017-May 6, 2018); Canadian Biennial 2017 (October 19, 2017-March 18, 2018)
    • A small exhibition exploring the Canadian Jewish Experience is on view at 30 Metcalfe Street (April 2 to December 31, 2017) and at the Canadian War Museum (May 5, 2017 to March 31, 2018)
  • THROUGHOUT 201710 diplomatic missions showcase their countries’ relationship with Canada at the International Pavilion:
    • 50 Sussex Drive – USA, Feb. 1-19; Mongolia, Feb. 25 to March 8; Israel, May 4-25 
    • 7 Clarence Street – Poland, June 2-18; Germany, June 27-July 19; Ireland, Aug 17-27; Belgium, Sept. 2-23; Hungary, Sept 29-Oct. 28; European Union, Nov. 2-12; Philippines, Nov. 20-Dec.8
  • MARCH 24, 2017: The Indspire Awards, recognizing Indigenous professionals and youth who demonstrate outstanding career achievement, are held at the National Arts Centre.
  • APRIL 28-JUNE 11, 2017: Canada Canada captures the influence of France and Britain as two of Canada’s founding nations via original photographs taken in Ottawa by Rip Hopkins at the Ottawa Art Gallery Annex at Ottawa City Hall.
  • APRIL 30, 2017: Celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary with AERO150, a special air show at the Gatineau-Ottawa Executive Airport. A Gatineau 2017 event.
  • Canada 150 tulipMAY 2017: 300,000 Canada 150 tulips – the official tulip of Canada’s 150th anniversary – bloom in parks throughout Ottawa and more bloom in residential areas. (Bulbs were available for public purchase in the fall of 2016 at Home Hardware stores across Canada.)
  • MAY 24-27, 2017: The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada’s Festival of Architecture engages the public as well as architects from across the country.
  • JANUARY 1-JUNE 26, 2017: ByTowne Cinema offers free screenings of Canadian movies on Sunday afternoons and Monday nights.
  • JUNE 29-JULY 4, 2017: The City of Ottawa’s Urban Camping Program turns several municipal green spaces and parking lots into camp sites.
  • JULY 1, 2017: Canada Day celebrations on Parliament Hill and throughout downtown.
  • MAY-JULY 2017: The Ottawa School of Art partners with community organizations to create a series of murals for the project Illunaata, which is Inuktitut for “all together”.
  • JUNE 28-AUGUST 30, 2017: As part of Canada Scene, a collection of massive sculptures called À perte de vue are displayed at La Fonderie (on Montcalm Street in Gatineau). Free admission. A Gatineau 2017 event.
  • JUNE 17-SEPTEMBER 9, 2017: Check out Populace, an outdoor exhibition featuring ceramic feathers, roses, and fleurs de lis highlighting Canada’s people during Confederation at the Canadian Museum of Nature
  • AUGUST 3-27, 2017: Cirque du Soleil presents a new show called VOLTA on the Zibi development site near the Portage Bridge, overlooking the Ottawa River. A Gatineau 2017 event.
  • OCTOBER 5-7, 2017: The World Tulip Summit celebrates the tulip as a symbol of peace and international friendship.
  • MAY 1-DECEMBER 31, 2017: The history of various communities in Ottawa is highlighted through activation at Capital History Kiosks, wrapped structures that feature archival photos and information.
  • BEGINNING JUNE 30, 2017: East of Ottawa in Prescott-Russell, farm silos are transformed into murals in the Popsilos project – check them out by following a route that links them all:
  • BEGINNING JULY 2017: Visit Sparks Street to check out an OTTAWA sign for a great photo-op where you can be one of the “Ts” of OTTAWA, or Parliament Hill for a huge CANADA150 sign!
  • DECEMBER 7, 2017-FEBRUARY 25, 2018: A free, public skating rink is unveiled on Parliament Hill for the first time ever!
  • Experiences Canada, a non-profit that provides educational exchanges, trips and forums for Canadian youth aged 12-17, will bring a record 150 student exchange groups to Ottawa in 2017


  • JANUARY 16-22, 2017: Canadian Tire National Skating Championships
  • FEBRUARY 3-5, 2017: Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group World Group first-round tie between Canada and Great Britain (tennis)
  • MARCH 25-26, 2017: Canada East Short Track Speed Skating Championships
  • JUNE 17-18, 2017: Ottawa International Triathlon, Canadian Triathlon Championship and CAMTRI American Cup
  • JUNE 24-28, 2017: Global Relay Canadian Road Championships (cycling)
  • JULY 1-2, 2017: Canada Day International Regatta
  • JULY 6-9, 2017: Canadian Track and Field Championships
  • JULY 25, 2017: Can-Am and American Association Baseball All-Star Game
  • AUGUST 4-7, 2017: Canadian Electric Wheelchair Hockey Association Championships
  • AUGUST 5-6, 2017: Canadian Whitewater Canoe Kayak Championships
  • AUGUST 13-20, 2017: Canadian Ultimate Championships
  • AUGUST 18-20, 2017: Youth Beach Volleyball National Championships
  • AUGUST 20-27, 2017: World Vintage Rugby Carnival
  • AUGUST 21-27, 2017: Canadian Pacific Women’s Open (golf)
  • SEPTEMBER 6-10, 2017: Canadian FireFit Championships
  • DECEMBER 2-10, 2017: Canadian Olympic curling trials (Roar of the Rings)
  • DECEMBER 17, 2017: The Ottawa 67’s take on the Gatineau Olympiques at an Outdoor Game at TD Palce


  • 160th anniversary of the Ottawa Chamber of CommerceEntrance to Rideau Canal near Bytown Museum
  • 100th anniversary of the Bytown Museum
  • 90th anniversary of the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill
  • 75th anniversary of Carleton University
  • 65th anniversary of the Canadian Tulip Festival
  • 50th anniversary of:
    • the Centennial Flame on Parliament Hill
    • Canada Science and Technology Museum
    • Order of Canada
    • Royal swans (a gift from Queen Elizabeth II in 1967)
    • Algonquin College
    • Ottawa ’67s junior hockey club
  • 25th anniversary of the modern Ottawa Senators NHL team
  • 10th anniversary of:
    • Savour Ottawa, promoting local food and drink
    • Rideau Canal named a UNESCO World Heritage Site (June 27, 2017)
    • Canada Army Run (September 2017)


  • WINTER 2017: Rideau Hall offers free skating on their outdoor rink, which is refrigerated as of 2017!
  • MAY 16, 2017: The Global Centre for Pluralism opens on Sussex Drive, creating a global destination for dialogue about the foundations and benefits of pluralism.
  • MAY 16, 2017: The Canadian Building Trades Monument is unveiled in Major’s Hill Park.
  • JUNE 15, 2017: The National Gallery of Canada unveils Canada’s Masterpieces: Our Stories, including the transformation of the Canadian and Indigenous Galleries as part of its 2017 celebrations. The re-visioned 45,000 square foot gallery will tell the story of art in Canada, interweaving Indigenous history and art.
  • JUNE 19, 2017: At Rideau Hall, a new forecourt and fountain are inaugurated to celebrate the sesquicentennial.
  • JUNE 21, 2017: A new permanent Arctic Gallery opens at the Canadian Museum of Nature.
  • JUNE 29, 2017: The new Canada’s Centre for Geography and Exploration opens, celebrating the physical and human geography of Canada. As of April 2018, it becomes the headquarters of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society.
  • JULY 1, 2017: The largest children’s playground in Canada (shaped like the country) is officially opened at Mooney’s Bay Park in Ottawa by the award-winning TV program Giver.Construction National Arts Centre
  • JULY 1, 2017: The National Arts Centre unveils a dramatic new windowed Elgin Street entrance with enhanced function rooms and stellar views of the capital.
  • JULY 1, 2017: The new Canadian History Hall opens at the Canadian Museum of History.
  • JULY 1, 2017: The Bank of Canada Museum (formerly the Currency Museum of the Bank of Canada) reopens in a totally renovated building on Sparks Street.
  • SEPTEMBER 27, 2017: The National Holocaust Monument is scheduled to be unveiled near the Canadian War Museum.
  • OCTOBER 28, 2017: A new monument to former Governor General Lord Stanley and his famous hockey trophy the Stanley Cup is unveiled on Sparks Street at Elgin Street. 
  • NOVEMBER 17, 2017: The Canada Science and Technology Museum celebrates its 50th anniversary, and reopens after $80.5 million in building repairs and upgrades.
  • Ottawa Sign: Check out the larger-than-life OTTAWA sign in the ByWard Market… the perfect stop for a 2017 selfie! This legacy item was first erected as part of Signature Event Inspiration Village, and has been kept in the ByWard Market neighbourhood at the beginning of York Street (at Sussex Drive).

Updated January 2018