*Wander safe, wander local. Check your region’s local health guidelines before heading out.
When the days start getting shorter and the sun becomes something you crave more than chocolate, you know you are entering into the darkest months of the year. It can be easy to feel a little down and dreary at this time of the year, which is why we need to push back and brighten the world by injecting a little fun into our lives.
This is the time to kick up our heels and play in the snow, learn something new, or embrace our competitive edge. We may not be able to chase the sunshine this winter but we can still push the clouds away with some fun local activities that will make you smile.
Chase away the dreary late fall and early winter by injecting a little sunshine into your life with these fun, local activities.
Learn Something New
One of the best ways to shake off the gloom is to learn something new that inspires you to create, to spread your wings, and to grow. Learn how to make beautiful glass art with a glassblowing workshop from Yours Outdoors at Artech Studios. In Perth, Kelly’s Flowers offers holiday workshops throughout the season where you can make a wreath, a decorative urn, and more, using fresh and dried flowers. Have you ever wanted to learn to knit? Take a virtual knitting workshop from Kim McBrien Evans at Indigo Dragonfly and create your own textile masterpieces.
Go Chasin’ Turkeys
The folks at Chasin’ Turkeys in Carleton Place have their COVID game down pat; they are on top of ensuring their customers are safe from COVID-19. Roll some strikes (or spares) here and know each group will be separated by an empty lane so you won’t need to worry about your social bubble. Other places to bowl in Ontario’s Highlands include The Fast Lane in Minden (try one of their glow in the dark evenings!) and Gratton Bowling Lanes in Smiths Falls.
You won’t notice the weather when you spend time in the forest while absorbing the calming influence only Mother Nature can provide. Take a hike to the top of Manitou Mountain in the Ottawa Valley for a spectacular lookout. In Haliburton, Barnum Creek Nature Reserve has easy to moderate trails that range from one to five kilometres. Explore more than 358 acres of land on one of the trails at McGeachie Conservation Area in Hastings County. Lennox & Addington’s Forest Trails will lead you through more than 127 acres of pristine Canadian Shield landscape.
Could anything perk us up more than an edible experience that satisfies the craving we may not have realized we’re having? Think rich, flavourful coffees. Dark chocolates. Fun beers. Yummy ciders. Unique craft spirits. (And yes, we should probably throw some food in there, too). Hit the road for a delicious road trip to explore one of Ontario’s Highlands’ food and drink trails and feel yourself brighten with each bite or sip. You can also explore virtually by ordering online and savouring at home.
Dive Into a Snow Day
When the snow has blanketed the world around you, it’s easy to spend some time regretting the loss of the warm, sun, and green grass, but the best way to face a wave is by diving into it. Plan a snow day to embrace the snow with a fun outdoor activity, like fat biking or winter camping. If you’re not feeling that adventurous you can just head for the backyard and make snow angels under a starry sky for a mid-winter pick-me-up.