Wesley Clover Parks Jumping from One Season to the Next
April 26, 2019
Wesley Clover Parks is once again ramping up for a busy summer season of programs and events for the local community and visitors. Here are several highlights from the latest Quarter, and some hints at what is up next:
- Key among the recent steps taken to improve the visitor experience at the Wesley Clover Parks Campground was the introduction of an online reservation system. The 2018 season was the busiest to date, and the new system is sure to prove its weight in gold once the 2019 season begins in May.
- For example, seven new powered sites for trailer camping have now been added, expanding the total available to 170 sites. Bookings for all these sites are already ahead of previous years.
The Community Supported Pollination Project is returning to The Parks in 2019, in continued partnership with Gees Bees Honey Company. The Project allows people to buy a seasonal share in an active beehive, meet their bees at harvest time, and receive a 12-month supply of the resulting honey. Last year shares in the hives sold out in record time, and the same is anticipated again this season. While the beehives have been covered with snow over the last Quarter, providing them with necessary insulation against the winter cold, things will no doubt be buzzing again soon …
The popular Magic of Lights holiday display wrapped up another successful run at The Parks in January. Ticket sales increased more than 10% from the previous season as a record number of visitors took in the spectacle, which is becoming a new family holiday tradition. The final math has been done, and a formal plan is now in place to make the resulting donation to the chosen charity for the event, the Ottawa Senators Foundation.
The Ottawa Forest and Nature School is building upon their licensed Nature-Based Early Learning Program for 2019. This program offers preschoolers the opportunity to spend two days per week in an immersive forest experience, playing and learning in outdoor spaces based around their cabin in the Wesley Clover Parks Campground, and popularity is skyrocketing.
- Kanata Nordic skiers have been grateful for a lot of snowy weather over the last Quarter, making full use of the more than 18 kilometers of trails at The Parks. The annual Pretzel Sprint Race and Snow Day events were very popular again, encouraging visitors to try a variety of winter activities including classic and skate skiing, snowshoeing, and even a laser-rifle biathlon station.
- The West Ottawa Soccer Club is preparing quickly to take advantage of the sports fields at The Parks once again, with plans in place to host the first games during the 3rd annual Wesley Clover Cup Tournament and Showcase on April 13th and 14th, 2019.
- The Ottawa Equestrian Tournaments return to Wesley Clover Parks for the 5th year in 2019. More than 1,500 horses competed in 2018, more than 20,000 visitors attended, and more than $435,000 in prize money was awarded. The bar has been raised further this year with the addition of the CSI2 Ottawa International I and the return of the CSI3 Ottawa International II in July.
- The Parks will offer a variety of Bronze-, Silver-, Gold- and Platinum-level events in 2019, including regional “Trillium” hunter-jumper competitions, the Ottawa Dressage Festival, and for the first time, the Ontario Horse Trials Association Championships. Overall, nearly 4,000 horses are expected to visit the site.
- New for 2019, the Ian Millar School of Horsemanship will be introducing a horseback riding day camp tailored to pre-school children as well as one for riders preparing to compete. These are in addition to the popular beginner day camps. More information can be found at wesleycloverparks.com.