2016 Programming

The Programming Committee of the Friends of Gatineau Park are happy to be publishing their planned schedule of events for 2016. The attached schedule is subject to change.  It covers brand new activities organized for the first time by the Friends as well as regular events that have taken place for several years.

Broader categories of activities covered by this schedule calendarinclude:

  • Snowshoe under the Stars

  • Dusk series

  • Wilderness skills

  • Special events

  • Speaker series

Regularly check our website prior to each scheduled activity for more details on location, registration, cost and any changes in date and time.

Commanda’s Birchbark Canoe: A Canadian Treasure

Join us on Saturday, January 23 to learn about the importance of the canoe on display at the Gatineau Park Visitor Centre.

Fabricated by Algonquin Elder William Commanda, this birchbark canoe was gifted to the Friends of Gatineau Park by the Waddell family in October 2014.

Canoe 2014 0The crafting of this type of canoe requires a great deal of skill and patience. Through a selection of original photos and a short video, participants will be able to appreciate the complexity of the fabrication process for this type of birchbark canoe. Then, a comparison will illustrate the differences between this Algonquin canoe and those made by other Aboriginal groups across the country.

The bilingual presentation will be given by Claude Cousineau, founding member of the Friends of Gatineau Park and canoeist.

This activity is for people age 13 and older. Reservations are required.

Where: Gatineau Park Visitor Centre , 33 Scott Road, Chelsea, Québec
When: Saturday, January 23, 2016, 4 pm to 5:30 pm (bilingual)
Cost: Member – Adult (18+), $16; Senior (65+) & Student (13+), $13
Non-Member – Adult (18+), $20; Senior (65+) & Student (13+), $16
Information and Registration: 819-827-2020 | 1-866-456-3016

The funds raised will help support Friends of Gatineau Park activities.

Celebrate the Magic of Winter at Rideau Hall

Join in the free activities on Saturday, January 16, 2016 from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Rideau Hall.  The Friends of Gatineau Park will have a kiosk on Nature Interpretation where you can learn about what happens to the wild animals of our region and their habitats during the winter months.


Snowshoe under the Stars is back!

While some folks are enjoying an unseasonably warm December, others are looking forward to January when our Snowshoe under the Stars activity returns.


photo courtesy of Michel Lemaire

Starting the 8th of January, strap on your snowshoes and join a Friends naturalist to learn how plants and animals face the challenges of winter survival in Gatineau Park.

N.B. as this activity is weather-dependant, some dates may be cancelled in consequence.

Dates and Time: every Friday starting the 8th of Jan until the 11th March 2016, 7pm to 9 pm
Place: Gatineau Park Visitor Centre , 33 Scott Road, Chelsea, Québec
Cost: Member – Adult (18+), $16; Senior (65+) & Student (13+), $13, Child (5 to 12), $7; and Family, $34                                                                                                      Non-Member – Adult (18+), $20; Senior (65+) & Student (13+), $16; Child (5 to 12), $7; and Family, $42  
Information and Registration: 819-827-2020 | 1-866-456-3016

Research Forum 2015

The Friends of Gatineau Park were holding the eleventh edition of their research forum on Saturday, November 21, 2015.  This yearly event is an excellent opportunity for natural science and heritage researchers to share the results of their research conducted in the park with the public and highlight the importance of research in managing and animating the Park. It also enables those who made donations to the Friends of Gatineau Park to see how some of their donations was used in supporting research.


The 11th edition of the research forum was quite diversified in terms of topics covered, ranging from settlers and families having lived in the park to fauna species such as snakes and bats without forgetting some further research results on Folly Bog. The five presenters invited were able to keep the undivided attention of the 25 or so attendants.


Many thanks to the presenters for quite an interesting day! Incidentally, some of them will provide an article related to their research for a future issue of the Friends’ Newsletter.


Special thanks to Gershon Rother for putting together this interesting program in cooperation with the staff of the NCC at Gatineau Park. Gershon is  chairing the Programming Committee of the Friends.


The pictures used for this post have been graciously provided by Michel Lemaire.


Final Program of the Research Forum

Automne 41

The program of the 11th Research Forum has now been finalized. The 5 presentations (historical and scientific) taking place on coming Saturday (November 21 from 11 am to 3 pm) are the following:


  •  11:00 – Settlers of Ridge Road (English) by Bill McGee  (Friends of Gatineau Park)

  • 11:30 – The Folly Bog (French) by Jordan Paillard (Montreal University)

  • 12:00 – Lunch and Discussion with Researchers

  •  1 :00 – White Nose Syndrome in Bats (French) by Daniel Toussaint (Ministère des forêts, de la faune et des parcs du Québec)

  •  1 :45 – The Milk Snake (French) by Francisco Retamal Diaz (Nature Conservancy Canada)

  •  2 :30 – Alexander Family and Tourism at Meech Lake (French) by Michel Lemaire (Friends of Gatineau Park)

For more details on this event and registration, please consult the following link.


Brief Report on AGM and Volunteer Appreciation Lunch


On Saturday, October 24, 2015, the Friends of Gatineau Park AGM  and Volunteer appreciation lunch was taking place.


During the volunteer appreciation lunch, Marie-Michèle Dallaire offered an entertaining presentation entitled “Regards croisés sur le parc” while the volunteers present during the lunch had an opportunity to meet and chat with some of their colleagues.


The Annual General Meeting (AGM) was chaired by the President of the organization, Graeme Roderick. He started the meeting by welcoming the attendees and then posted the meeting agenda for review and approval. One of the salient points of the meeting was undoubtedly the presentation made by Catherine Verreault, who is Manager of Land and Natural Resources in the Gatineau Park at NCC. Her presentation was touching on a sensitive topic with many park users, namely Responsible Trail Management in Gatineau Park.


Graeme R. was delighted to announce that several persons have accepted to join the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Gatineau Park for next year. The complete report of the 2015 AGM will be posted later once the minutes of the meeting have been prepared by the Secretary.



Pictures used for this posting were provided by  Michel Lemaire, who has supplied for some time a number of photos to accompany information posted on the website.


11th ANNUAL RESEARCH FORUM – 21 November 2015

The Friends of Gatineau Park (FGP) and the National Capital Commission (NCC) invite the public to the 11th Annual Research Forum on Saturday, November 21 from 11am – 3 pm. Participants are welcome to attend free presentations about the fascinating research being conducted in the Park, and chat with the experts.121009_Last-Golden-Rays
Research undertaken in Gatineau Park helps Park management in their short- and long-term planning aimed at safeguarding natural and historical assets, while offering a number of recreational activities. It is also the basis for interpretation and education programs presented in collaboration with the Friends of Gatineau Park.
Presentations will be in either English or French, followed by a bilingual question period.  A light lunch will be served followed by a discussion with researchers at 12:30 pm.
Space is limited. Reservations are recommended.
  • Date and Time: Saturday, November 21, 2015, 11 am to 3 pm
  • Place: Lynx Room, Gatineau Park Visitor Centre , 33 Scott Road, Chelsea, Québec
  • Information and Registration: 819-827-2020 | 1-866-456-3016
  • Cost: Participants are encouraged to make a donation in support of research in the Park.
A detailed program will be published on the Friends of Gatineau Park website shortly.

Autumnal Work Bee – Thanks to Participants!

Last Sunday, 20 volunteers covered nearly 60 kilometres of trails as part of the Work Bee. The goal was to verify trail conditions in preparation for the upcoming ski season. Under the leadership of Laura Marks from the NCC and France Girard from the Friends of Gatineau Park, volunteers proceeded to remove deadfall on the trails. They also identified larger debris for removal such as large overhanging branches or trees.

Identifying dangerous overhanging trees for removal

photo credit: Stuart Pursey

Survival in the Outdoors Workshop – November 27, 2015

The Friends of Gatineau Park are happy to be offering again this year, this popular workshop: Survival in the Outdoors, part of the Wilderness Skills series. Participants will learn about survival priorities and what to do if lost in the woods with members of Sauvetage Bénévole Outaouais – Ottawa Volunteer Search and Rescue (SBO-OVSAR). The presentation features practical tips and equipment demonstrations.



Topics covered:

  • Survival priorities

  • Planning a hike

  • Ten essential items you need to carry and know how to use

  • Search and rescue techniques.

IMG_6488With these tools you will be less likely to get lost in the woods, yet better prepared for misadventures.

This Friends of Gatineau Park activity is for persons aged 12 and older. Reservations are required. The funds raised will help support Friends of Gatineau Park activities.


Here are more details on this workshop:

When?  Friday, November 27, 2015 (English), from 7 pm to 9 pm approximately; a similar workshop in French will take place the next day, Saturday am, November 28, from 9:30 to 11:30

Where? Gatineau Park Visitor Centre, 33 Scott Road, Chelsea, Québec

Cost?   Member of the Friends of Gatineau Park: Adult: $12, Student (18 and over) / Senior (60 and over): $10

Non-Member: Adult: $15, Student (18 and over) / Senior (60 and over): $12

Youth (aged 12 to 17): $5

Reservations and information? 819-827-2020 or 1-866-456-3016 (toll-free)


The second picture has been provided by Estelle Rother.