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April Festivals: Comedy, wine and maple syrup!

April Festivals, Toonik Tyme

Andrew (left) and Mary-margret Ell at the Childrens Snowmobile Races at Toonik Tyme Festival. (Amy Qaumariaq/Toonik Tyme)

Story by Vacay.ca Staff

April showers bring the flowers – or in this case lots of laughs and maple syrup!

This month the Winnipeg Comedy Festival kicks off in Manitoba in what promises to be a great show. Toonik Tyme is a great reason to visit Iqaluit, where you can learn about igloo building and seal skinning. From Fredericton New Brunswick to Elmvale Ontario, there are several festivals that you will love, with lots of wine and good food.

Here is Vacay.ca’s list of the top festivals happening across the country during the coming month:

Festival Tips for April 2012

Calgary Spoken Word Festival
Banff and Calgary
Dates:  Banff 4 – 14, Calgary 17-22

Spoken Word poetry encompasses word, language, rhythm, sound, music, and beat. It is written and presented in the voice and tone of the people. It is for the people. It represents the community.

EDITORS’ PICK!!! Winnipeg Comedy Festival
Dates: 5-15

Alan Thicke (Growing Pains, The Alan Thicke Show). Fellow sitcom star and talk show host Caroline Rhea (Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The Caroline Rhea Show), and funnyman Harland Williams (Dumb and Dumber,Half Baked) are just some of the stars who will be making you laugh at this show.

Winnipeg Wine Festival
Dates: April 29 – May 5, 2012

The 2012 Winnipeg Wine Festival is pleased to welcome both Wines of British Columbia and Wine Country Ontario as this year’s Theme Regions. 135 wines from 35 wineries from these regions will be featured at the Public Tastings.

New Brunswick

Fredericton Wine & Food Fest
Date: 14

The Wine and Food Fest is organized by the Canadian Diabetes Association, New Brunswick Region, to provide funding for summer-camp programs for children with Type 1 diabetes.

Maple Capital of Atlantic Canada Festival
Date: 3

Discover the many facets of our Maple Capital of Atlantic Canada Festival. The festival takes place during the sugar season, on Easter weekend, and caters to all ages.

Northrop Frye International Literary Festival
Dates: 23 – 29

The Frye Festival offers the best of local, Canadian and international authors, including children’s authors, graphic novelists, storytellers, poets, playwrights, spoken-word artists and more.

EDITORS’ PICK!!! Toonik Tyme Festival
Dates:  12 – 16

Toonik Tyme is Iqaluit’s annual spring festival which has been a community tradition since 1965. A jam-packed, week-long schedule includes traditional Inuit activities such as igloo building, dog team races, Inuit games, and a seal skinning contest. Other activities you won’t want to miss are the snowmobile races, Iqaluit Fear Factor, the craft fair, scavenger hunts and much more. Great for all ages!


Elmvale Maple Syrup Festival
Date: 21
Every year the sleepy town of Elmvale explodes in a celebration of Nature’s rites of Spring – the running of liquid gold – Ontario Pure Maple Syrup.

Ottawa International Writers Festival, Spring Edition
Date: April 26 – May 1, 2012

Do you love the written word? Come and be inspired by great authors from across Canada.  The goal of this festival is to create an environment that activates creativity and encourages the love of reading, learning and self-expression.

Rubber Boots Festival des Bottes de caoutchouc
Date: 28

With a focus on the area’s maple syrup tradition, the day will be filled with entertainment, arts and crafts, artisans and vendors, games and activities, maple-themed food and beverages, and of course, music and dancing.

Prince Edward Island
Queens County Music Festival
Queens County
Dates: April 23-27 and April 30 – May 4th

Provincial Music Festival Association and the Associated Music Festivals on P.E.I. put on a show at this competitive music  festival. University of Prince Edward Island and Park Royal United Church, Charlottetown,


Festival Jazz et Blues Héritage
Date: 15

If you’re in Quebec check out this Jazz and Blues Heritage Festival. Some of the shows may be sold out but this festival will be hopping!


Annual Dawson City International Short Film Festival
Date: 21 – 24

Among the most northern competitive film festivals in the world, the Dawson City International Short Film Festival (DCISFF) has been showing short films of all genres every Easter weekend since 2000. The festival also includes special events such as master classes with exciting guests, meet and greets, workshops, filmmaking challenges and awards.

Vicky is the worldly publisher of Vacay.ca. Having graduated from McGill University in Montreal, she has set about building a talented team of travel experts to deliver to you words and images of the very best places to see and experience in Canada. Based in Yorkville in Toronto, Vicky regularly jet sets around Canada — be sure to catch up with her when she's in your part of the country.

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