Where to watch fireworks in Ottawa this Victoria Day weekend

This year's official Canadian Tulip Festival fireworks show is back at Dow's Lake, but if you follow the rules, you too can legally shoot off your own pyrotechnics this weekend.

This is also 1 of 2 weekends where the City of Ottawa allows personal fireworks displays

Fireworks will boom, hiss and shriek over Dow's Lake this Sunday, but also at smaller gatherings across the city. (CBC News)

This year's official Canadian Tulip Festival fireworks show is back at Dow's Lake, but if you follow the rules, you too can legally shoot off your own pyrotechnics this weekend.

The big show starts at 8 p.m. Sunday.

It's free, but buying a $20 ticket gets you into a VIP area with a complimentary cocktail.

Victoria Day and Canada Day are the only times of the year in Ottawa where blasting off your own fireworks won't get you a visit from bylaw officers, as long as you follow the rules.

The rules include:

  • Fireworks may be discharged only on the day of, the day before or the day after Victoria Day, which is Monday, May 21.
  • They must be discharged by someone 18 or older, on private property, with permission of the property owner.
  • Minimum safety distances as indicated on the fireworks product must be maintained from spectators, buildings and vehicles.
  • The fireworks display must not cause danger or nuisance to any person or property.
  • It's illegal (and not smart) to shoot off a firework in or into a vehicle, building, street or square.
  • The sale of consumer fireworks, except on Victoria Day and the seven business days immediately preceding Victoria Day, is prohibited.
  • Professional firework displays, such as those on Parliament Hill, and smaller-scale versions at public parks on holiday weekends, may only be discharged by someone over 18 who holds a permit issued by the Ottawa Fire Chief.
  • Firecrackers are prohibited from being used or sold in the City of Ottawa or Province of Ontario. The city defines a firecracker as "a pyrotechnic device that explodes when ignited and does not make any subsequent display or visible effect after the explosion."
  • Anyone selling, purchasing or using firecrackers within the City of Ottawa is in violation of the Fireworks Bylaw as well as provincial law.

Kingston's fireworks are happening at Lake Ontario Park at 9:30 p.m. Sunday, and are free to watch.

In Kingston, you can only legally shoot off fireworks in a residential area between dusk and 11 p.m. on the day before Victoria Day (Sunday) and Victoria Day itself (Monday).

The exception would be if you get the permission of the city's fire chief.