When it comes to finding things to do during March Break, Hamilton Halton Brant has a lengthy list. We’ve got oodles of exhibits, a slew of shows, and activities galore for kids of all ages. From maple syrup to spiders and from 3-D to Disney, here is your guide to beating boredom on the break.
Oodles of Exhibits
Put on a pair of 3D glasses at the Hamilton Museum of Steam and Technology to see its 1859 Pumphouse in an entirely new way. Using 3-D photography to capture images of the architecture and machinery, local designer Jennifer Kaye has done photographic justice to the beauty of this National Historic Site. You’ll see the Waterworks depicted with startling realism, and learn about 3-D photography and machine art. The Doing it Justice exhibit is on daily from 12 pm to 4 pm and is free with regular museum admission.
The break is the perfect time to take in Royal Botanical Gardens’ winter exhibit, Spiders Alive! Explore the amazing adaptations and behaviours of spiders and other many-legged creatures in two interactive exhibits and daily programs for all ages. In addition to live arachnids representing approximately 17 species, the exhibition includes larger-than-life models of spiders, a climbable spider model 50 times life size, and a rare 100-million-year-old fossil of a spider in limestone. The exhibit is open daily 10 am to 5 pm and regular admission rates apply; during March Break there will also interactive Discovery Shows, puppet presentations, and cool games on offer.
A Slew of Shows
March Break magic will appeal to all ages at the Sanderson Centre on March 11, when Illusionist Lucas Wilson arrives in Brantford direct from the pages of Guinness World Records and your TV. Gandini Juggling, performing in Oakville on March 11 and Burlington March 15, combines juggling, geometry and classical Indian dance in its show Sigma, designed to stimulate the imagination with its percussion score and multimedia projections.
Older audiences won’t want to miss Potted Potter at Hamilton’s The Studio, March 9 and 10. Audiences experience all seven Harry Potter books (and a real-life game of Quidditch) condensed into 70 hilarious minutes. For the younger set, Disney on Ice comes to Hamilton’s FirstOntario Centre from March 13-17 for 10 performances. Grab your Mickey ears and get ready for the ultimate Disney experience in this skating spectacular, as Mouse-ter of Ceremonies Mickey Mouse leads a parade of characters and presents the sounds of favourite songs and moments from most-loved movies.
March is the start of maple syrup madness! The fresh Ontario sweet treat begins flowing at Bronte Creek Provincial Park on the first Saturday in March when the park’s annual Maple Syrup Festival gets under way. Enjoy a guided tour of Maple Lane, where interpreters costumed for the 1890’s demonstrate different historical ways of collecting and making maple syrup. The tour ends in the middle of Spruce Lane Farm where you can learn how to make fresh maple sugar or enjoy a stick of delicious maple taffy before visiting the various farm animals in the yard. The maple syrup festivities are open to the public from 9:30am to 3:00pm every weekend in March and over March Break.
More March Break madness is on hand at the Hamilton Children’s Museum, presenting The Magical World of Wizarding daily March 9-17, from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm. Get your wands ready as the museum transforms into a magical school of wizardry where kids can learn all about Charms, Potions, Divination and even how to take care of Magical Creatures. Dressing up as your favourite witch or wizard is encouraged!
More dress-up is on the agenda at Dundurn National Historic Site. Over March Break, children are invited to make their own costume pieces, dress up and take pictures in front of recreated backdrops of Dundurn from the 1840s to 1960s. On guided tours, costumed staff invite you into some of Sir Allan MacNab’s rooms for a photo op. At The Hamilton Military Museum, dress up like an 1812 solider and have your picture taken in front of a British encampment or ‘camp out’ in the hands-on discovery gallery (March 9-15, 12 pm to 4 pm).
If you’re ready to do away with screens and blinking lights, visit the Museum of Steam and Technology’s Unplugged March Break Activity Centre in Hamilton, March 11-17 from 12 pm to 4 pm. Kids can try low-tech games and activities including a giant chess board, train puzzles, matching games and origami, and make their own craft to take home.
Another low-tech option is the historical scavenger hunt on the beautiful grounds of Fieldcote Memorial Park & Museum (March 12-16, 12 pm to 4 pm). Hamilton’s Battlefield House Museum and Park promises A Monumental March Break, with plenty of fun and fascinating hands-on activities for the whole family that will make the past come alive (daily March 9-17, 12 pm to 4 pm). More history is on hand at Whitehern Historic House & Garden, where you can explore “Anthropomorphia” through the ages. Kids will enjoy spotting “Shopkins” hidden amongst the McQuesten family’s every-day items and seeing how people have been adding human faces and characteristics to inanimate objects and animals for a very long time (March 9-17, 12 pm to 4 pm).