December 6, 2023
WESLEY CLOVER PARKS – Community hub for outdoor events and activities
The Wesley Clover Parks Campground wrapped up a busy camping season following the Thanksgiving weekend. Being the closest campground to downtown Ottawa, July proved to be the busiest month with tourists flocking to Ottawa to enjoy summer in the Nation’s Capital and equestrians gathering at The Parks for the Summer Tournaments. The property also played host to more than 40 group bookings, a highlight being the Breath of Fresh Air Summit, which welcomed over 200 guests to their three-day Outdoor Play Summit where thought leaders, practitioners, researchers, and policymakers connected and shared best practices.
The Ian Millar School of Horsemanship continues to operate a full schedule of recreational horseback riding lessons year-round. The school offered seven weeks of beginner riding camps this summer, which were met with rave reviews from campers and families. The day camp team looks forward to returning in 2024 and growing these offerings.
After a successful first season in Ottawa, the Lost Kingdoms packed up their life-sized dinosaurs to make way for more third-party events. In September, the RBC Race for The Kids welcomed thousands to participate in 2K, 5K and 10K races and raised more than half a million dollars for youth mental health services at CHEO! A new addition to the event calendar, Pumpkins After Dark brought Canada’s largest Halloween festival to Wesley Clover Parks. Featuring over 10,000 hand-carved pumpkins, this walk-through event has been met with enthusiasm from Ottawa residents and visitors.
October marked the end of the 2023 horse show season at Wesley Clover Parks. This year, the site hosted 16 equestrian competitions across all three Olympic disciplines, welcomed more than 4,500 competitors, and saw multiple sell-out events. The Spurs & Sparkles charity gala presented by RBC Royal Bank made a grand comeback on August 21st to kick off a week of international show jumping competition at Major League Show Jumping Ottawa. The equestrian-themed soirée welcomed hundreds of guests to enjoy delectable local food and beverages and the wildly entertaining Get Up & Gallop Race while raising more than $60,000 for the Queensway Carleton Hospital Foundation! The event is scheduled to return on August 19, 2024.
This winter, the Magic of Lights dazzling drive-through light show returns to the Wesley Clover Parks Campground. Now in its eighth season, the event supports children, youth, and families at CHEO and will run until January 7th, 2024. Since first coming to Ottawa, Magic of Lights and Wesley Clover Parks have donated more than $250,000 to local charities.
Wesley Clover Parks is one of the major initiatives undertaken by the Wesley Clover Foundation. We are a local, not-for-profit outdoor recreation and learning hub dedicated to promoting health and education in the immediate and extended communities. Wesley Clover Parks is also committed to giving back to our community. Learn more about some of our initiatives.