The good news is that it will definitely be spring by the time the Annual rolls around. The bad news is that our famous spring celebration, known as the Canadian Tulip Festival, doesn’t open until after our gathering has ended.
And since the blooms are weather-dependent, we have no idea whether we’ll see any of the beauties during our event.
But you can meander along scenic Queen Elizabeth Drive and visit Commissioner’s Park, near Dow’s Lake, to see if any buds have opened. And read about this historic, spirit-lifting festival at: https://amsterdamtulipmuseumonline.com/blogs/tulip-facts/what-are-the-origins-of-canadas-tulip-festival
I know many rug hookers are also gardeners – or at least love being outdoors, appreciating nature and perhaps strolling through exquisite gardens – so a visit to the Central Experimental Farm and the nearby Fletcher Wildlife Garden might be in order. It will probably be too early for the lilacs, but I’m told serviceberries and cherry trees should be sporting blossoms.
Marvel at water’s power and attraction
One area exhibit I’d love to see involves a journey into the Ottawa Valley to visit Almonte, located less than an hour’s drive from Ottawa. This spring, the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum features a multimedia exhibition (April 7 — June 23) that nicely complements our Annual’s ‘Hooked on Waterways’ theme. It’s called ‘Tributaries’, and reflects the area’s history with the textile industry and immigrant labour.
Savour this juicy description posted on the museum’s website: “The exhibit features Emily Rose Michaud’s living tapestries, cyanotype drawings, maps, and paintings, layered with the sounds of water, Gaelic folk song, social and political speech, and out-takes from Esmerine’s atmospheric melodies.”
Find out more at http://mvtm.ca/?exhibition=living-tapestry.
A restorative ramble
And here’s another suggestion to round out this triptych of local prowling opportunities. Treat yourself with a date to explore Beechwood Cemetery, a garden treasure located in east Ottawa.
Among its attractions, Beechwood has several thousand bulbs planted by its gardening staff annually, so there’s bound to be a glorious seasonal show.
Established in 1873 and designated as a National Historic Site in 2001, the cemetery reflects is rural roots. Wandering through its 160 acres, you’re transported from urban bustle and noise to a serene woodland park setting that features gazebos, ponds and a marsh, nature trails, fountains, fascinating monuments and glorious gardens.
As the burial ground of diverse notables ranging from renowned poets Archibald Lampman and Duncan Campbell Scott to business tycoons, sports heroes, fathers of Confederation, former prime ministers and other prominent politicians and luminaries, the cemetery’s historical significance is apparent.
Beechwood is also Canada’s National Military Cemetery, the Ottawa Police Service Memorial Cemetery and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) National Memorial Cemetery. Special ceremonies, walks and events are held each year. Group tours take place often, or can be arranged on request.
I haven’t been there for a while, so high time for me to revisit!
Stoking the creative fire
Guaranteed, you’ll come away from any of these delightful diversions with your head full of new images and fresh ideas!
See you in the loop,
Marla, Content creator