Victoria Day 2017: What's open and closed in Ottawa

For many people the May long weekend is the unofficial start to summer. If you're out and about the city celebrating, here's a list of what's open and closed.

What you need to know for the May long weekend, including Ottawa's rules about fireworks

The Rideau Centre in downtown Ottawa is open Victoria Day from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (iStockphoto)

For many people the Victoria Day weekend is the unofficial start to summer.

If you're out and about the city celebrating, here's a list what's open, what's closed and what's different on the holiday Monday.

Parking and public transit

  • All City of Ottawa parking regulations and restrictions apply.
  • OC Transpo service will operate on a Sunday schedule on Victoria Day. Families and groups can buy a DayPass from the bus operator when they board for $10.25 that will let them travel all day. A family or group can include up to six people with a maximum of two who are ages 13 or older.
  • All OC Transpo customer service centres will be closed Victoria Day with the exception of the Rideau Centre office, which will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Fun places to hang out

Pools, rinks and fitness centres

  • Many city-run facilities will be open on Victoria Day, but with modified schedules. For details, check with or the facility of your choice.
  • Facilities may be open but many regularly scheduled programs at swimming pools, community centres and arenas are cancelled on Victoria Day. The city says you should check with your facility to confirm because there are exceptions.
  • Public skating will be offered at Bob MacQuarrie Recreation Complex, Jim Durrell Recreation Complex and Goulbourn Recreation Complex. Please check with for details.

Libraries and cultural places

  • Arts centres, archives, galleries, theatres and museums will be closed on Monday. However, clients should check with or their facility to confirm holiday hours, as some exceptions may apply.
  • The Karsh-Masson Gallery, the Barbara Ann Scott Gallery and the OAG Annex at City Hall will be open.
  • All branches and services of the Ottawa Public Library will be closed. 


Last year, hundreds of people filled Commissioner's Park near Dow's Lake during the Victoria Day long weekend to take in the Canadian Tulip Festival. (Hillary Johnstone/CBC)

If you want to shop for a spring wardrobe: 

  • Rideau Centre will be open from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
  • Most shopping centres, including Bayshore, St. Laurent, Place D'Orléans and Carlingwood, are closed Victoria Day.
  • Tanger Outlets is closed.

If you want to buy groceries:

  • Whole Foods at Lansdowne Park will be open 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • The Metro at 345 Carleton Ave. in Wellington West is closed.
  • The Loblaws at 100 McArthur Ave. in Vanier is closed.
    • However the garden centre will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
  • The Farm Boy at 499 Terry Fox Drive in Kanata is closed.
  • The Sobeys 6315 Hazeldean Rd in Stittsville is closed.

(These are only a few examples. Please check with your local store.)

As well, vendors and stores in the ByWard market will be open for the holiday, and in the Glebe, many stores will be open. Check their website for details.

If you want to purchase alcohol:

  • The LCBO and the Beer Store are closed.

Residents are allowed to set off Victoria Day fireworks on Monday, May 22, as well as the day before or the day after, according to the city's fireworks by-law. (Kate Bueckert/CBC)

Your own

  • According to the city's fireworks by-law, consumer fireworks can be set off on the day of, day before or the day after Victoria Day. They must be set by someone 18 or older, and on private property, with permission of the property owner. The fireworks display cannot cause danger or nuisance to any person or property.

Holiday displays

  • The Canadian Tulip Festival will be setting off fireworks at TD Place on Sunday, May 21, at 9:00 p.m. Tickets for the Tulipmania Fireworks are $20 or free for kids 12 and under. The full event runs from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Garbage, green bin and recycling pick-up

  • There will be no curbside green bin, recycling or garbage collection on Victoria Day. Instead, Victoria Day's pick-up will take place on Tuesday, May 23. In addition, the collection of green bin, recycling materials and garbage will be delayed by one day for the week of May 22.
  • There will be no multi-residential collection of bulky items, green bin and recycling container collection on Victoria Day. Instead, Victoria Day's pick-up will take place on Tuesday, May 23. Recycling container and green bin collection will also be delayed by one day for the week of May 22. 
    • However, multi-residential garbage container collection is not delayed. It will take place on its regularly scheduled day during the week of May 22.
  • The Trail Waste Facility is closed.

City services

  • Ottawa City Hall and all seven client service centres, including the government service centre at 110 Laurier Ave. W., will be closed. 
  • The City's Provincial Offences Court at 100 Constellation Cres. will also be closed. It will reopen on Tuesday, May 23.
  • The City's 3-1-1 Contact Centre will be open for urgent matters that require the City's immediate attention. Residents can call 3-1-1 or 613-580-2400 to speak to a customer service representative. People living with a hearing-related disability can call (TTY: 613-580-2401).
Tulips bloom beside a sunlit bench in Ottawa in May, 2017. (Nathalie Tremblay/CBC News)