The Shaw Festival

The start of the summer season means that there is so much going on in Niagara!  Recently, as part of their Tourism night, the Shaw Festival invited us to watch Cabaret in the Festival Theatre in the heart of downtown Niagara on the Lake.

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What an amazing evening! From our picture being taken in the main hallway, to the lovely drinks offered by Konzelmann, one of Niagara’s many beautiful wineries – the evening was as picture perfect as one would expect from such a stunning location.

What a show! Cabaret is a moving play revolving around the ups and down of the often tumultuous relationship of an American writer in Berlin and nightclub singer Sally Bowles, during a time when the world is about to turn upside down with the rise of Hitler.  Caberet is “hailed as a rare musical that both challenges and entertains” (Shaw Festival website).  The acting was superb, and we are still humming the incredible music in our heads.

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The 2014 season is in full swing, with shows like The Philadelphia Story, The Charity That Began at Home, Arms and the Man, When We Are Married, and so many more.   For a truly enchanting day or evening, going to the Shaw Festival is a must do this summer, for tourists and locals alike.

Please visit the Shaw Festival website for more information on show times, ticket prices, and so much more.

Thank you Shaw Fest for a great night – we had a blast!

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Photo Credit: George Bailey

Niagara Falls New Years Eve 2014

NYE2Niagara Fall’s has one of the largest New Year’s celebrations in Canada. Viewers from around the country, tune in to watch the fireworks over the falls and count down to the new year with ET Canada and musical guests every year!

 

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This year, we’ve got some big names coming to our stage. Demi Lovato will be headlining the performances, with featured performances from Sam Roberts Band and Serena Ryder! Queen Victoria Park will be filled with over 40,000 people; locals and visitors to celebrate. Two awesome firework shows, food vendors and a licensed area will all be part of your celebrations when you bundle up and head down to the falls to welcome 2014!

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Christmas Season in Niagara Falls

winterfallsThe holiday season in Niagara Falls is a fun and festive time. There are lots of great holiday events, the city looks beautiful dressed in Christmas decorations and the wintery scenes down by the Falls with the frozen trees are magical. Of course, everyone knows about the beautiful light display of the Winter Festival of Lights, but do you know about the many other fun events?

Rotary Holiday House Tour December 6th and 7th. This tour has stops at more than  a dozen beautiful heritage homes and Niagara wineries. Tickets are $25 and can be utilized on both Friday and Saturday if you can’t seem to fit them all in one day.rotary

Christmas Tea Weekend at the McFarland House Saturday December 14th- Sunday December 15th. With seatings at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 3:30 p.m, the menu will feature holiday favourites.

Niagara-on-the-Lake Santa Claus Parade happens on December 14th at 11:00am in downtown NOTL.

winter_wine_pu_bannerWinter at the Wineries. The wineries around Niagara have a ton of great holiday events between now and after New Years. Check out their Stocking Days of Christmas or of course The Ice Wine Festival.

Christmas by the Falls- your one stop shop for Christmas craft gifts and great decorations, happening at the Scotiabank Convention Centre, December 7th and 8th.

Whether you want to check out beautiful Christmas displays, enjoy some wine or drink some tea, or just get in the Christmas spirit… Niagara Falls has something for all of the Christmas lovers out there! Happy Holidays!

Opening Ceremonies of Winter Festival of Lights to be a spectacular sight AND sound

witner3The Winter Festival of Lights is something that visitors and locals look forward to year after year. This Saturday, November 9th, the Opening Festivities will be taking place with something that has never been done before… the longest firework show that Niagara Falls has ever seen in the winter season, synchronized with a live performance by the 42 piece Niagara Symphony Orchestra!

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Opening Festivities will begin at 2pm, paying tribute to Niagara’s Korean War Veterans with traditional dance and drum troupes. Musical performances, ice sculptures, food vendors and lots of fun for the kids, will also be taking place at Queen Victoria Park.

The big flip of the switch which will happen at 6pm and will illuminate the Skylon Tower, Zimmerman Fountain, Religions of the World displays, the world’s largest Canadian-American Flag display and a lantern display, new this year. At 8pm, Music Director of the Niagara Symphony Orchestra, Bradley Thachuk, will conduct the 15 minute piece; while spectator’s eyes light up with the sights of the fireworks and their ears are filled with beautiful music.

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If you are staying at the Best Western Plus Cairn Croft this weekend, make sure you catch the WeGo Shuttle down to the Falls for what is sure to be an amazing experience!

Niagara Falls International Marathon 2013

marathonThe Niagara Falls International Marathon has been voted one of the top scenic marathons in Canada. This annual event brings lots of visitors, both runners and spectators to Niagara Falls. If you thought this event was just about a run, you’ve got that wrong. The whole weekend, October 25th-27th, is full of events for the participants.

marathon3There will be a 5K, 10K, half marathon and full marathon during the weekend. Some of the fun events that are planned include Forever Young & Healthy Living Expo at the Skylon Tower, Greg Frewin Magic Show, a RunFest Pasta Dinner, School Cheer Challenge and of course a firework display over Niagara Falls.

Good luck to all of the participants this year and we hope that everyone has a great weekend in Niagara Falls. Don’t forget, if you are looking for a hotel room, give Best Western Plus Cairn Croft a call at 1.800.263.2551!

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Thanksgiving Weekend in Niagara Falls

With Thanksgiving Weekend approaching , visitors and locals alike are planning out their long weekend. Luckily for all of us, there are lots of fun activities going on in Niagara Falls. Of course, for many people, this weekend will be spent gobbling down a delicious turkey dinner with the family and being grateful for everything that we have. But we are here to let you know that there is lots of fun happening beyond the dinner table!

Balls FallsBall’s Falls Thanksgiving Festival: This annual festival brings together artisans from the area, selling one of a kind pottery, artwork and clothing. Filled with entertainment and delicious food, this is a great family-friendly option for the weekend. Running from October 11th-14th.

Ridgeway Fall Festival: Another fall festival in a quaint part of the Niagara region is the Ridgeway Fall Festival, happening October 12th on Ridge Road in Ridgeway. With a great market, free children’s activities and a beer tent for mom and dad, this festival is a great way to check out what Ridgeway has to offer.

4 seasons of HeartlandAstronomy Days at Heartland Forest: Free to check out (donation optional) Saturday the Niagara Centre of the Royal Canadian Astronomical Society will be showcasing some great tips for the amateur astronomer at Heartland Forest! From how to view the auroras in your backyard to how to snap a photo with a simple camera, this is a fun and different event. Starts at sunset!

 

Fireworks!Fireworks at the Falls: The last Fall Firework display in Niagara Falls will be happening Friday night.. walk down to Queen Victoria park and make sure to look up at 10:00pm!

 

 

 

Whatever you decide to do this weekend.. we hope that you get to spend time with friends and family! Happy Thanksgiving!

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Whose Live Anyway at Scotiabank Convention Centre

whose-lineIf you, like me, remember sitting down to watch Whose Line Is It Anyway with your family back in the 90′s then you are going to love this! Whose Line Is It Anyway is back on television on the CW, with some of the original crew; Colin Mochrie, Ryan Stiles and Wayne Brady. The host this time around is comedian Aisha Tyler. I sat down to watch an episode in hopes that it would be as funny as I remember and although there are some slight differences, I can tell you I was literally LOLing all through the episode.

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whose-line4This isn’t the only good news! A live version of Whose Line Is It Anyway is coming to Niagara Falls’ Scotiabank Convention Centre; Whose Live Anyway. Featuring some of the same cast from the hit TV show, this live, audience interaction ad-lib performance is sure to please. Ryan Stiles, Greg Proops, Jeff Davis and Chip Esten will bring the original laughs to the stage. Unfortunately, if this is the first time you are hearing about it, tickets sold out very quickly! I would suggest tracking down friends that bought tickets and bribing them for their extra spot… it will be worth it!

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62nd Annual Niagara Wine Festival

wineIt’s that time of year again! No, not back to school time and no not end of summer… it’s Niagara Wine Festival! Entering it’s 62nd year, this festival helps Niagara locals and visitors celebrate Niagara’s pride and joy; our wine!

As always, there will be Discovery Passes available for purchase for $40, which allows you to discover what each winery has to offer. Throughout the festival, the wineries have paired their favourite wines with some delectable dishes! The Discovery Pass can be used Saturdays and Sundays from September 14th to 29th. It’s a great opportunity to visit some wineries that you’ve never been to before or revisit a few of your favourites.

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This year, I’d like to give a shout out to Creekside Winery, with their Roasty-Toasty pairing. A guest chef at the Best Western Plus Cairn Croft Hotel for our Robbie Burns Celebration, Chef J. Mark Hand has created a roasted heirloom tomato and basil “margarita” tarte with crumbled Ontario Farmer’s cheeses, paired with Creekside’s barrel-aged 2011 Cab Shiraz and 2008 Reserve Pinot Noir. Sounds delicious! Good job Mark!wine3

wine4Another fun event that caught my eye was the Picnic In The Vineyard at Cattail Creek Estate Winery. For only $15/person, you can enjoy a picnic basket filled with assortments of meats, cheeses and antipastos, along with some home-made cookies for dessert. Of course, all of this will be complimented with a glass of wine, surrounded by a beautiful vineyard.  Guys! Here’s a hint… this is really romantic.

wine5And what Niagara Wine Festival blog post would be complete without mention of the big party that goes on in Montebello Park, starting on September 20th- 22nd and again 27th-29th. Lots of delicious food vendors, amazing wine displays and fun entertainment too! Friday, September 27th, the Caverners will be playing from 8-10:30pm, another Best Western Plus Cairn Croft connection… who have played live from The Croft Lounge! For a full list of Montebello Park’s lineup, check out their website.

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So here’s to celebrating the amazing wineries that Niagara has to offer… and whether you have traveled from around the world or down the street, I hope that Niagara’s wine is enjoyed with good food, great friends and creates lasting memories.

Doc Magilligan’s Restaurant & Irish Pub- Opening December 2013

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Locals and visitors looking for a friendly exchange and great entertainment in Niagara Falls, ON have always headed to the Croft Lounge at the Best Western Plus Cairn Croft Hotel. A much-patronized fixture since 1965, over the years the Lounge has seen its share of changes. None, however, as extensive or exciting as its upcoming transformation, set to be unveiled in December 2013, as Doc Magilligan’s Restaurant & Irish Pub. Having so many great and loyal customers, we know that you will love this fresh change!

Doc Magilligan’s will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, evening entertainment, sports, nightlife- a new friendly and local spot for everyone to enjoy together.

Like Doc Magilligan’s Restaurant & Irish Pub- Opening December 2013 on Facebook for all of the updates as we move forward in this exciting time!

So who’s Doc Magilligan?

Doc Magilligan, the Pub’s namesake, was great, great grandfather to Maureen Magilligan Cade- Managing Owner. Now, as the story goes, our good Doctor didn’t want for a share of the ole’ legendary Irish charm. Admired for his nurturing care when he made his rounds, and just as popular when buying yet another round for the lads. Thoroughly professional but still the life of the party, the beloved Doc was nothing if not the real deal!

Perfect then, that Doc Magilligan’s Restaurant & Irish Pub will totally be the genuine article. Completely built in Ireland and then shipped to Niagara Falls, come Decemeber, this magnificent establishment will be dishing up delicious, comfort-inspired fare, as well as craft and International brews, in authentic “Irish-as-it-gets” surroundings. Doc would be right at home, greeting his mates while resting his elbow on the grand Victorian bar. Do make it a point to swing by and be part of the next chapter of the Doc Magilligan story.

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A BBQ and Band at Queenston Heights

Queenston HeightsWe’ve spent the day at Queenston Heights before and we’ve told you about the family fun you can have. But this Sunday, August 25th, it can be even more special, with the Annual Harvest BBQ and a live band concert before that.

Queenston Height’s Restaurant will be hosting a BBQ, at the foot of Brock Monument at 4:00pm. For only $40/adult and $20/child, you can enjoy delicious seasonal creations. Duck Breast on Yukon Potato Cake with Blackberry Drizzle, Grilled Market Antipasto Salad, Rainbow Trout with Apricot- Jalapeno Salad, Angus sliders, Niagara Peaches and Cream corn, BBQ Baby Back Ribs and more.

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Before the BBQ, spend the day enjoying the park and from 2-4pm, the Lincoln Concert Band will be playing. The Lincoln Concert Band is a community band, made up of 35 volunteer musicians. It’s a great opportunity to take in some big band music for free!

With a beautiful weather forecast for this weekend, I think the day spent at Queenston Heights will be a terrific way to spend a Sunday. Whether you are a local looking for something different to do, or a visitor looking for more than just a Maid of the Mist ride, take advantage of what Queenston Heights is offering!

For tickets to the BBQ, call 905-262-4274.