The 2023 edition of Winterlude officially kicks off on Feb. 3, with residents able to enjoy many activities the winter festival provides in the Ottawa and Gatineau regions for the first time in two years.
Winterlude runs from Feb. 3 until Feb. 20 and in total, there are more than 400 different activities taking place.
However, due to the extreme winter temperatures the capital is receiving over the next few days, Melanie Brault the director of capital celebrations and program operations at Canadian Heritage, told The Sam Laprade Show on Feb. 3 that some of the outdoor activities have been impacted due to the weather conditions.
The Rideau Canal Skateway still isn't ready to open yet, and activities in the Snowflake Kingdom at Jacques Cartier Park have been cancelled due to the weather.
"We want to make sure that at the forefront of all of our decisions, that we are taking into consideration the health and safety of folks who are coming down to participate in Winterlude, the hundreds of volunteers we have and the wonderful team I have," she said. "We had to make some tough decisions to cancel some events or postpone them to tomorrow (Feb. 4).
The good news, said Brault, is that there is still lots of time to enjoy the many other activities that Winterlude offers.
The capital will see the return of ice-carvers along Sparks Street and Indigenous musical performers.
The annual celebration of winter attracts 600,000 visitors on average, many of them from outside the region.
A full list of events and activities can be found on the Winterlude website.
Listen to the full interview with Melanie Brault below: