Festival du Voyageur

end February
Winnipeg, Manitoba (MB)

Established more than 30 years ago, the Festival du Voyageur celebrates Canada’s fur trading history, winter, all things French-Canadian, and the “voyageurs” who worked for the fur trading companies.Originally a three-day event, the Festival du Voyageur now lasts ten days, is still held in Winnipeg's French Quarter of Saint-Boniface and has grown to be affectionately referred to as the “World’s Largest Kitchen Party” with a wide variety of historical and educating activities, exhibits, arts and crafts and entertainment.

Celebrating the voyageur’s lifestyle, costumed staff at the Voyageur Park, the centre of the festivities, guide visitors through a range of activities including old-style voyageur sports, tug-of-wars, scavenger hunts, snow sculptures, the ever popular slide, snow maze and sleigh rides, beard growing contests, and jigging and fiddling competitions.

Artisans in the park highlight a number of local arts and crafts from fur hats, mitts, and ear-muffs, to jerky and smokies, semi-precious stones and hand-crafted jewelry.

The First Nations encampment offers a different perspective of the time of the fur traders in special exhibits like real tipis, and folklore presentations highlighting that time in the form of stories and legends.

Other official venues for the Festival du Voyageur include the Relais du Voyageur Trading Post presenting food and music, L’Auberge du Violon reliving the traditions of French-Canadians of the past, the English style King’s Head pub, the Relais des Pionniers Trading Post featuring Franco-Manitoban and Quebec music and artists, and the Club ST-B Trading Post offering leg wrestling, Voyageur wrestling, pillow fights, tug-of-wars and even log sawing competitions.

And last but not least, the heart of the Festival du Voyageur festivities is Fort Gibraltar, a North West Company fur trading post, originally built in 1810 and rebuilt in 1978 to offer a wealth of family fun and entertainment.

Tickets for Voyageur Park range from $13 for an adult day pass to $22 for an adult 10-day pass. For children between 6 and 17 years old, both passes are only $5 and children under 5 enjoy free admission.

For more information about the Festival du Voyageur visit the official web site at http://festivalvoyageur.mb.ca/

Featured Top events and festivals in Manitoba

• Dauphin’s Countryfest

• Festival du Voyageur

• Folklorama Festival

• Red River Exhibition

• Winnipeg Folk Festival

• Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival

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