Long weekends may look a little different this summer, but fireworks aren’t the only way to add spark to a special occasion. The summer of 2020 is a perfect time to create some new summer holiday traditions. Here are a few fun and easy ideas to help make your summer long weekends feel extra special.

Serve Butter Tarts For Breakfast

Why should this quintessentially Canadian treat be reserved for the dessert course? Kickstart your long weekend Saturday, Sunday or Monday morning with a sensational sugar rush! Pick up a six-pack of pastry perfection from your favourite bakery. They’re the perfect accompaniment to a strong cup of coffee. 

Create The Great Canadian Cooler

How well do the beer bottles that are typically in your cooler or bar fridge reflect how much you love your country? Canadian long weekends are an excellent opportunity to put a little extra pride in your pint glass. Try these great options in Hamilton, Halton and Brant. Don’t forget tasty beverages from local wineries and cideries too.

Deck Out Your Deck

While our American neighbours often show their pride with red, white and blue balloons, banners and bunting, Canada’s colours are perfect for patriotic planters. Stock up on red and white blooms at your favourite nursery or garden centre. If your planters need a little refresh by the Labour Day long weekend, spruce things up with some pretty fall blooms like sunflowers, chrysanthemums and flowering kale.

Spot Nature’s Fireworks

A big part of the fun of fireworks for children is staying up until it’s dark. Push bedtime back a few hours and take a nighttime trip to a dark area to spot constellations and shooting stars.

Host A Canuck Driveway Dinner

While large group gatherings may be off the table this summer, you can still be social with a little creativity. Organize nearby neighbours for a long weekend celebration where everyone enjoys their meal at the same time on their front yards or driveways. Group dinners like this can be organized on apartment building patios as well. Encourage everyone to shop for fresh seasonal ingredients at local farmer’s markets and farm stands to add a little extra Canadian pride to your plates. Set up speakers and enjoy your meal with entertainment from an all-Canadian soundtrack.

Try Some New Glowstick Tricks

Light up the night with some good, glowing fun. Try dropping glow sticks into a backyard swimming pool for an illuminated night swim. Head to a local park at dusk for a family game of tag with glowsticks or flashlights. Glue glow sticks onto an old frisbee and create your own light show.

Experiment With A New Family Outing

It’s often the people you share the experience with that are the best part of fireworks. The good news is your family will probably have just as much fun if you shake up your long weekend routine with a new activity. Why not set out on an afternoon family float aboard an inflatable raft down the Grand River or explore Royal Botanical Gardens’ Cootes Paradise by canoe?

Take In a New View From A Great Canadian Landscape

Did you know that Hamilton Halton Brant is home to Canada’s oldest and longest footpath, a Canadian Heritage River, Canada’s largest botanical garden AND a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve? While the summer of 2020 may be short on fireworks, we guarantee the views, plants and wildlife you’ll experience on a visit to these amazing places will inspire an entirely different kind of, “Wow, did you see that one?”


As the COVID-19 situation continues to change, a minute or two of extra planning is an important step in ensuring your Stay and Play outing is a success. Follow the latest travel guidelines for your community and any communities you plan to visit. Check with businesses and places you plan to go to ensure they are open and serving visitors in the way you’re expecting. Find out how you can support local businesses, get the latest in virtual tours and experiences and taste a true close to home brew. Don’t forget to share your long weekend pictures with us by tagging them with #stayandplayinhhb.

Stay and Play Experiences & Tours View All >>

Now thru December 31

Virtual Tour – Hamilton & Scourge War Ships

Hamilton Civic Museums

Throughout the City of Hamilton, Hamilton, ON, L8R 2K1

Now thru September 7

African Lion Safari – Drive Thru Game Reserve

Guest must purchase tickets in advance online. Tickets will NOT be sold onsite.

Now thru December 31

Virtual Tour – Fieldcote Memorial Park & Museum

Fieldcote Memorial Park & Museum

64 Sulphur Springs Road, Ancaster, ON, L9G 1L8

Now thru December 31

Virtual Tour – The Hamilton Military Museum

The Hamilton Military Museum

610 York Boulevard, Hamilton, ON, L8R 3H1

Now thru December 31

Virtual Tour – Griffin House

Griffin House – National Historic Site

733 Mineral Springs Road, Ancaster, ON, L9H 1A1

Now thru December 31

Virtual Tour – Hamilton Children’s Museum

Hamilton Children’s Museum

1072 Main Street East Hamilton, Ontario L8M 1N6

Now thru October 2

Feed the Alpacas

Alpacas From Eighth & Mud

232 8th Rd E, Stoney Creek, ON L8J 3M2

For the summer months we will be open: Thursday to Sunday 10:00 to 4:30; To book...

August 1 - September 27

Sunflower Kingdom

Andrews Scenic Acres

9365 10 Side Road Milton, ON L9T 2X9

OPEN DAILY FROM 10am-5pm

Now thru November 30

Go Karts and Paintball Fun

Cameron Speedway & Amusements

2633 Upper James St. Mount Hope , ON L0R 1W0

Mon - SUN: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm All prices are per driver, no splitting...

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