A long-awaited, in-person return for the Vanier Sugar Festival!

Published on 22.02.2023

OTTAWA, February 22, 2023 – The Vanier Museopark is proud to announce the return of the Sugar Festival, which will take place in person from March 27 to April 2, 2023, at Richelieu Park. A flagship event in the Museopark’s public programming, the Sugar Festival celebrates the sugar season and allows visitors to reconnect or become familiar with the artisanal way of producing maple syrup.

“We are thrilled to finally be able to present a full-scale, on-site Sugar Festival to locals and visitors from the greater Ottawa area”, said Madeleine Meilleur, Executive Director of the Vanier Museopark. “We have a few new additions to the program this year thanks to community partnerships, including with the Ottawa Music Industry Coalition for our music programming. We are confident that festival-goers will be delighted to discover a host of local talents.”

“The Ottawa Music Industry Coalition is proud to partner with the Vanier Museopark to present the 38th edition of the Sugar Festival, showcasing local talent,” added OMIC’s Executive Director Mélanie Brûlée. “We know that along with the museum and hospitality sectors, the music industry has been among the hardest hit in recent years. So we’re excited to come together again and showcase these incredible artists. This is a great opportunity for us to offer a taste of the city’s culture. We encourage everyone to join us for the celebrations!”


Overview of the Vanier Sugar Festival program (#fds2023)

The Sugar Festival is a gourmet and cultural event that brings together young and old alike around various activities that are sure to please: sugar shack breakfasts, musical performances under the big top, farm animals, lumberjack skills competition, inflatable structures, space dedicated to First Nations, Metis and Inuit culture, and many other surprises – not to mention delicious maple taffy!

Among the activities to be highlighted this year:

Monday, March 27, from 5:30 to 9:00 p.m.: 16th annual Soup(e) Splash, a friendly culinary competition where Ottawa’s best kitchens compete to create the best maple syrup-based soup.

  • WHERE: Kiwanis Hall of the Richelieu-Vanier Centre (300 des Pères-Blancs Avenue)
  • More details to come on February 27, 2023 on this fundraising campaign for the Vanier Museopark.

Wednesday, March 29, and Thursday, March 30, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.: School Days. Schools in the greater Ottawa area are invited. Children will be introduced to the traditions of sugar time through a variety of fun activities and will see a live musical performance.

NEW – Friday, March 31, starting at 5:00 p.m.: Dinner and dance evening to the sound of old-time traditions! Liven up your meal with an evening of dancing where traditional music and square sets will be honoured thanks to the talents of Louis Racine et les Pourquoi Pas. Come celebrate the sugar season during this traditional “soirée canadienne”!

  • WHERE: Centre Pauline-Charron (164 Jeanne-Mance Street)
  • Cost: $15 per person. All proceeds will go to the Centre Pauline-Charron.
  • Get your tickets here.

Saturday, April 1 and Sunday, April 2, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.: Family days – everyone is welcome! Come celebrate all weekend and take full advantage of traditional maple syrup production at its best! Activities for children, adults, and foodies!

  • WHERE: Richelieu Park and Vanier Sugar Shack (300 & 320, des Pères-Blancs Avenue)
    • Discovery of the new sugar shack and tasting of maple taffy ($);
    • Musical performances from local talents throughout the day;
    • Sugar shack meals served on the Festival site, and taffy at the sugar shack ($);
    • Inflatable games and petting farm outside (with pony rides by Countryside Petting Farm, $);
    • Axe throwing for adults with BATL Axe Throwing (Saturday, April 1st) ($);
    • Indoor playground for toddlers (offered by ON y va! and HIPPY);
    • Junkyard Symphony performance at the Ottawa Public Library – Vanier (Saturday, April 1 only) ;
    • Lumberjack skills competition (Sunday, April 2):
    • Beer tasting with the Festival’s official brewery, Orléans Brewing Co., including their famous maple beer ($).

Sunday, April 2, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.: 5K run open to all. Stéphanie Plante, City Councillor for Vanier-Rideau, is taking the opportunity of the Festival to invite people in her ward to run or walk through the streets of Vanier and the Beechwood Cemetery. Proceeds will be donated to the Vanier Museopark.

  • WHERE: Duford Street, near Richelieu Park
  • Cost: $20 per person or $50 per family or group of 3 people
  • Registration opens: March 12, 2023


“This is the 38th edition of the Sugar Festival,” says Mrs. Meilleur. “I sincerely hope that many people from Vanier and the surrounding areas will take part in the festivities organized by the Vanier Museopark during this not-to-be-missed event of the sugaring season.”

The Vanier Museopark wishes to point out that the organization of the 2023 Sugar Festival is made possible thanks to the generous financial contribution of its partners, and wishes to sincerely thank them: the City of Ottawa, the Government of Ontario and its Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Ontario Arts Council and the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

Come and indulge your sweet tooth with us at the 2023 Sugar Festival! Visit the Vanier Museopark website to learn the latest details or to become a volunteer.


About the Vanier Museopark

The Vanier Museopark is a non-profit organization located in the heart of Vanier, a popular neighbourhood near downtown Ottawa. It celebrates the rich heritage and history of its community. Through its exhibits, talks, workshops, school programs and interpretive tours, the Vanier Museopark allows curious people of all ages – and all cultures – to discover and learn about the habits and customs of the local Francophonie. It is the only French-language museum in Ottawa and one of the few Canadian museums outside Quebec devoted entirely to the Francophonie. The Vanier Museopark also operates an authentic sugar shack in the heart of an urban sugar bush, the only one of its kind in the world. It also hosts the Sugar Festival, a family-friendly annual event that promotes the culture of maple syrup as well as Franco-Ontarian and Aboriginal artists. Proud of its roots, the Vanier Museopark has been anchored in the community since its creation in 2004. www.museoparc.ca

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For additional information or to submit questions, please contact:

Annick Normand
Manager, Communications and Marketing, Vanier Museopark
Cell: 613-878-2820

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