What's open and what's closed in Winnipeg on Canada Day, wonky hours and all
Most stores are permitted to be open on holiday Sunday but close on Monday
Heading into Canada Day weekend, here's your first reminder: there are a few things different about this year.
Festivity-wise, there won't be fireworks at Assiniboine Park, and the downtown Canada Day living flag event also has been retired.
Shoppers should keep in mind retail hours will be wacky this year because Canada Day falls on a Sunday. Due to a quirk of Manitoba law (the same is the case in New Brunswick), most retail stores can be open on the holiday, July 1, but must close on July 2.
There's lots going on in the city, though. Here are a few of your options.
Osborne Village Street Festival
The long-running standby is on again this year, bringing two days of music, shopping and shows — as well as roughly 70,000 people, its website says — to Osborne Village.
The street festival begins Saturday and continues throughout Sunday, featuring live musical and cultural performances, beer tents, a fashion show, a drag show, a giant cake and more.
A kilometre-long section of Osborne Street will be closed to traffic from McMillan Avenue near Confusion Corner north to River Avenue.
There's a lot going on at The Forks this Canada Day, including everything from dance lessons under the canopy — hip hop, swing and salsa, although not all at once — to skateboard workshops and a human library featuring Indigenous performers in traditional regalia.
Then there's the outdoor concerts starting at 1:30 p.m., with another stage starting up at 7 p.m., and the finale of fireworks at 11 p.m.
The Forks Market will be open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. over the holiday weekend, and a pop-up market will set up shop in its parking lot.
There's a free bike valet from noon to midnight, and the Children's Museum will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, while the Canadian Museum for Human Rights will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The CMHR is offering $5 admission that day.
Before you make any plans, here's a reminder: there will be no fireworks at Assiniboine Park this year.
There will be daytime programming, though, including a Folklorama performance, an appearance by Al Simmons, bouncy castles and food and drink (the adult kind) on the terrace at the Pavilion (this will stick around every Thursday evening throughout the summer).
The Assiniboine Park Zoo will be open extended hours, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., on Canada Day. The first 200 visitors will get a free animal zipper pull, and Winston, the resident polar bear mascot, will make appearances from noon to 3 p.m.
St. James Village BIZ fireworks
After Assiniboine Park announced it wouldn't put on its own fireworks, St. James Village BIZ decided to put on some of its own.
The display will take place near Bourkevale Community Centre on Ferry Road at 11 p.m. on Saturday night, giving you a jump on Canada Day.
Transcona BIZ bash
Canada Day celebrations in Transcona begin Sunday with a 9 a.m. pancake breakfast at the Transcona Legion at 117 Regent Ave., and continue starting with opening ceremonies at noon.
Attractions include a nearly two-metre-tall battleship, a velcro wall, a bouncy castle and plenty of games, plus free face painting, glitter tattoos and princesses and superheroes. Performances later in the afternoon are capped off by fireworks at 10 p.m. at Buhler Recreation Park.
Horse races start at 7:15 p.m., followed by a fireworks display. Parking and admission are free.
St. Norbert Farmers' Market
Canada Day activities at the market, located at 3514 Pembina Hwy., run from 1 p.m. until fireworks at dusk.
FortWhyte Alive is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on holidays, its website says. Activities on offer include giant lawn games and dip netting or sweep netting adventures.
Festivities are included in admission for the general public and free to members.
Here's where some of the Sunday holiday wackiness comes in: most Winnipeg malls are open as normal on Canada Day itself, but closed for the observance day on Monday, July 2.
That applies to Polo Park, St. Vital Centre, Grant Park Shopping Centre, Kildonan Place and Garden City Shopping Centre.
All Winnipeg liquor marts are open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Canada Day Sunday, except for the Cityplace location, which is closed.
Most are also open the same hours on the Monday, except for Cityplace and any express locations: Gateway, Jefferson, Pembina Village, Reenders, Sargent Avenue and St. Anne's Road.
All civic offices are closed on Monday, July 2, for the holiday. Weather permitting, all City of Winnipeg outdoor pools will be open Sunday, July 1.
Fort Rouge Leisure Centre, St. James Civic Centre, Freight House, Mayfair Recreation Centre, Peguis Trail Health & Fitness Centre, Turtle Island Neighbourhood Centre and Sergeant Tommy Prince Place will be closed on Sunday, July 1, and open on Monday, July 2. All other centres will be closed on the Monday.
Winnipeg Transit will run on a Sunday schedule on Canada Day, with these additional services:
- A free Canada Day Shuttle will operate between The Forks and Osborne Village from noon until midnight.
- Extra service on Portage Avenue buses will operate between The Forks and Assiniboine Park from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Regular transit fares apply.
Transit will run on a modified weekday schedule on the Monday. Super express routes won't run. These are:
- 25 Ness Super Express.
- 34 McPhillips Super Express.
- 35 Maples Super Express.
- 36 Northwest Super Express.
- 137 Richmond Super Express.
- 161 University Super Express.