March 10- April 2, 2017, 10am to 5pm, Lambton Heritage Museum, Grand Bend, paintontario.com
Paint Ontario is Ontario’s foremost juried competition, show and sale of original representational art from artists all over the province. Artwork depicts the diversity of the Ontario landscape, architecture, flora and fauna, waterscapes and urbanscapes. Founded by Master Pastel Artist and local resident Barry Richman in 1996, in 2015 the Grand Bend Art Centre, founded by another local artist – Teresa Marie Phillips, took over the reins of managing the event. The area’s art community is involved in the event’s organization and management. Depending on the time and day you attend, you can watch local artists demonstrating creative techniques. Show entry is FREE with museum admission.
Summer Sunset Sounds
July & August Sundays, 7pm, Main Beach, Grand Bend, summersunsetsounds.ca
This two-month concert series runs July and August, every Sunday or holiday Monday. Held at the Grand Bend Rotary Community Stage, each concert features opening and headliner performances. Enjoy up-and-coming and well-known Canadian talent at Lake Huron’s shoreline as the sun drops lazily over the horizon. Previous years’ performers have included Zack Neil, Michael Vanhevel, Steel City Rovers, Stegall, Trent Severn and the Walkervilles. Concerts FREE – donations welcome. Bring your own chairs.
Kettle & Stony Point PowWow
July 8 & 9, 2017, Saturday 1pm & Sunday Noon, Kettle & Stony Point First Nation, 9226 Lake Road, Kettle Point, kettlepoint.org/powwow
For 47 years, the Chippewas/Ojibwa of Kettle & Stony Point First Nation have invited everyone to enjoy a cultural heritage event unique to North America – the PowWow. Event features traditional dance competitions (jingle dress, fancy shawl, traditional, grass and more), drumming, First Nation foods, traditional crafts and ceremonial and traditional clothing. Parking is FREE; reduced admission for seniors and children.
MOPAR Drag-Racing Nationals
August 4 & 6, 2017, Grand Bend Motorplex, Grand Bend, GrandBendMotorplex.ca
Canada’s largest drag-racing event, the MOPAR Nationals at Grand Bend Motorplex host 350 racing teams that compete in multiple vehicle classes. The Motorplex has several racing tracks accommodating car, truck and motorcycle racing events. Racing clubs take over the tracks weekdays, with larger events scheduled on weekends. Annual favourites such as Harleys by the Beach, Ontario Nostalgia Drag Racers Race Weekend, Thunder by the Beach, Stratford Spectacular and Windsor Weekend are just a few of the special events.
Zurich Bean Festival
August 26 & 27, 2017, Zurich Fairgrounds, Zurich, BeanFest.ca
Zurich’s downtown core morphs into festival ground-zero with vendors, midway rides, entertainers and musicians. The festival features one of the largest vintage and antique car show and shine events, taking up all of the local playing fields. Dig into a meal of home-cooked, locally produced baked beans and pork-chops.
Did You Know: The area is known as the White Bean Capital of Canada – growing, processing and shipping tons of white beans worldwide!
Exeter RAM Rodeo
August 11-13, 2017, South Huron Recreation Centre, Exeter, exeterrodeo.com
Cowboy up and join the fun! Exeter’s rodeo attracts fans eager to capture the challenges and thrills experienced by competitors. Rodeo grounds are open the entire weekend so you chat with the cowboys/girls, witness behind-the-scenes activity and grab autographs.
Canada Day at the Beach
July 1, 2017, Main Beach, Grand Bend, CanadaDayGrandBend.ca
Grand Bend’s Main Beach hosts one of the largest Canada Day celebrations on Lake Huron’s shoreline. Canadian and local musicians perform 2-6pm; headliner takes the stage at 8pm; fireworks at 10pm. FREE event – donations welcome.
Grand Bend Arts, Eats & Beats Studio Tour – “The Stars Come Out”
May 5-7, 2017, Multiple locations, Grand Bend & Port Franks, grandbendstudiotour.com
Event features art, food and music at multiple studios and restaurants. Saturday 10am-5pm; Sunday 11am-5pm.
Lambton Fall Colour & Craft Festival
October 14 & 15, 2017, Lambton Heritage Museum (Grand Bend) & Legacy Recreation Centre (Thedford), lambtonmuseums.ca
Giant artisan show and sale of Canadian-made, non-manufactured products ranging from food items to home & garden décor, jewellery, clothing and gift items, 100+ vendors!