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The Top 25 Things To Do in YMM This Summer

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This is going to be my third summer in Wood Buffalo and the summer of 2013 is shaping up to be a great! There will be so much to do. There will be dozens of day trips to take, beach days at Gregoire Lake, relaxing fishing and boating time on the Snye, walks on the Birchwood trails, enjoying family time at one of the great outdoor facilities provided by the RMWB, or just sitting in your backyard or deck having a BBQ and a beverage. Long days, lots of sunshine, and getting out to enjoy the great outdoors is what attracted me to the Wood Buffalo region! With so much to do this year, here is but a glimpse of 25 things to do with your friends and family.

1. Gregoire Métis Festival is a real down to earth family festival with traditional games, Métis entertainers, cultural tents, and more. This May event was a great way to kick-start the summer!

2. The Hub Family Resource Centre’s fourth annual June Bug Children’s Festival is going to be the best ever. There will be a full day of family fun with music, bouncy castles, and so much more on Father Mercredi field Saturday, June 1. On June 2, they have a huge surprise: children entertainers Max and Ruby will play two shows at the Casman Centre. FB: The-HUB-Family-Resource-Centre @TheHUBFRC

3. Get set to see real cowboys (and just because I play country music do not mistake me for a real cowboy) at a Real Rodeo at the Tour North Ranch on the Airport Highway! This annual rodeo runs June 1-2 and is guaranteed to be a great day for the family. If you have never seen bull riding before, this is your chance…and they do yeehaw!

4. Every year, the Canadian Cancer Society’s Relay for Life grows bigger. There’s no doubt that this year will be any different. On June 7, get out and fight back against cancer on the Father Merc field. Enjoy great local entertainment while raising money for cancer research. FB: Fort-McMurray-Relay-for-Life @cancersociety

5. If you want to play in the big leagues of hockey, you and your family might try on the Hockey Night In Canada Play On 4on4 Street Hockey Tournament June 8 and 9 at MacDonald Island Park! This is always fun and you never know what famous NHL stars just might appear too! FB: hnicplayon @PlayOnDirector

6. Be on the lookout for one of the best breakfasts in Wood Buffalo and your chance to put out a real fire, with the 14th annual Fire Fighters Breakfast. This is a gathering of the community and lets you live your dreams of becoming a real firefighter…and your kids too. Get served June 15 at Fire Hall 1.

7. Fort McKay Treaty Days give you the chance to explore Fort McKay and get to know more about local culture. There is family fun starting June 20, capping off with a big concert and fireworks on June 22.

8. You can learn more about the Aboriginal peoples of Canada at National Aboriginal Day at Heritage Park. Watch First Nations, Métis, and Inuit culture come alive through music, dance, food, and more at this annual event June 21.

9. There is one thing that Fort McMurray has more of per capita and that is jacked up trucks. Now it’s time to see who has the biggest and baddest truck in Wood Buffalo. Get set to get dirty in the mud with the Janvier Mud Bog!

10. Most Canadian towns and cities celebrate Canada, but no one does it like we do…with Big Spirit at the CanadaROCKS festival hosted by Events Wood Buffalo! Concerts, parades, family fun days, fireworks and so much more. You will just have to listen to me on Country 93.3 to find out everything that is going on! @country933 | | @Events_YMM

11. A couple of days a year I can be found on the golf course. If you want to see how the game of golf is actually played and not the way I do it, head to the Syncrude Boreal Open! The tournament is coming back to Fort McMurray with the best golfers in Canada July 8-14 at the Fort McMurray Golf Club in Thickwood. @2013SBO Syncrude-Boreal-Open

12. If you enjoy cooking, or you just enjoy good food, you will want to join me as I host Chef Michael from the Food Network July 27 as he takes you on a culinary “Walk Across Canada.” This is a fundraiser at MacDonald Island Park for the Family Crisis Society and will also feature Cape Breton fiddler Natalie MacMaster and her full band! Get your tickets before it’s too late. | @FamilyCrisisSoc

13. For the last two years, I have hosted the main stage of Heritage Day at Heritage Park and this year it’s on August 5. This is a true multicultural celebration with Canadian and international dances, music, stories, and food. This is a real outdoor fair with something for everyone in your family…bring a change of clothes for the watermelon eating contest! Fort-McMurray-Heritage-Park @McMurrayHistory

14. This is one of my favorite events of the year because you can eat until you burst. Check out the annual Taste of Fort McMurray put on by Volunteer Wood Buffalo. Here is your chance to taste a little from several local restaurants and they promise you will leave full! Get set to taste what Fort McMurray has to offer August 21 at MacDonald Island Park. @VOLUNTEERWB

15. If you want to get out and see what the community is about, why not check out the 2013 Coldwell Banker Community Bash in Borealis Park? Music, dancing, BBQ, and family fun make this a hit every year. Look for the posters around town!

16. Did you know you live in a 4-bloom community? I guess all the rumours about Fort McMurray are not true! Communities in Bloom is a project to make Fort McMurray beautiful, and they like to celebrate with their Party In the Park. Come find out what the flower of the year will be and see how you can keep your neighbourhood beautiful.

17. It doesn’t take much to amuse me, and watching rubber ducks floating down the river is something that could occupy me for days. The Rubber Duck Race for Big Brothers Big Sisters is a fun family day and you can sing The Rubber Ducky Song like Ernie! You can buy your ducks all over Fort McMurray then you can head to the Hanging Stone River August 18 to see if your duck wins! @BBBSWoodBuffalo

18. No matter what you do in the Wood Buffalo area, you need to check out the Oil Sands Discovery Center to see what drives the economy. Find out everything you need to know about the oil sands, and where the industry is going. All summer long they have special programs for kids too, so plan on spending the day!

19. We are lucky to have Events Wood Buffalo who put on great festivals and community events. Two of the festivals you can look forward to this summer are the Interplay Festival and the Big Spirit Festival. Concerts, plays, children’s activities, baking contests, stand-up comedy, and a little something for everyone in your family! Get out and enjoy the community!

20. You can’t expect to see an article on what’s going on in YMM without MacDonald Island Park! Your kids will love the water park, you can enjoy the sauna, or maybe the family can play in one of the field houses. Ask about all the great programs in Canada’s largest recreational facility. A new expansion is being looked at for the Timberlea area as well. @macdonaldisland

21. There are days when you just need a getaway. Walk in the sand and watch your kids frolic in the water as you grab some rays and catch up on your favorite book. You can do that at Gregoire Lake just a bit down Highway 881.

22. If working out is your thing, and you want to train alongside the athletes of Keyano College, you need to check out the Syncrude Sport and Wellness Center. This is another great sporting facility that is also home to the Keyano Huskies who had their best sporting season on record last year, and according to their Athletic Director, next year is looking even better. @keyanohuskies

23. World class theatre is never far away from Keyano College and their amazing soft seat theatre. You can become a Theatre Angel and support the arts or you can just go experience theatre in a one off. There is something for everyone in your family too, with shows for kids, teens and adults, plus there is always music with live concerts. Find the next show you are going to see at a jewel of Fort McMurray at

24. If you have grabbed YMM Magazine but live at camp and think it is all well and good that all this great stuff is going on, but you live so far away, don’t worry because there is a site to let you enjoy all of this. You are never more than a bus ride away from all of Fort McMurray, just check out for your next ride into town and fun!

25. Over and above all the great golfing, world class sport fishing, hunting, quading, summer sports, community events, boating, day trips, and just the day-to-day fun that makes Wood Buffalo special, get out and see the beautiful views that living in the north gives you. Explore and make sure you see the Northern Lights, one of the gifts of living in Wood Buffalo.

For more information on our region or to help plan your stay or your visiting family’s stay in our region please contact the friendly team at Fort McMurray Tourism at 1-800-565-3947 or

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