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ODYSSEO: A SPECTACULAR HORSE SHOW UNDER THE BIG TOP

You don’t have to be a horse lover to love Cavalia, but it helps. Never has there been a show that so unironically captures the special feelings that horses can inspire in those of us who are drawn to them. The first Cavalia was unlike any “horse show” ever created- it’s not a circus, though it’s presented under the world’s biggest big top, and it’s not a pageant, though the sets and costumes are marvelous, and it’s not a play, because there’s no storyline to speak of. And their second show, Odysseo, is more spectacular, more ineffable, just more, than the first…

HALLOWEEN IN MONTREAL: FOR KIDS OF ALL AGES

Montreal residents generally don’t need an excuse to get out and enjoy their city. But if ever there was one, it’s Halloween, which very comfortably slips the city – and its seasonally-appropriate Old World sensibilities – into an otherworldly embrace each and every October 31, with a colourful array of activities and events, tricks and treats…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (OCTOBER 7-13)

At some point in the last few years, I started calling Thanksgiving Day, coming up this Monday, Canadian Thanksgiving. I blame my American friends, many of whom don’t understand why we celebrate Thanksgiving in early October. The common ground, however, is food and Montreal’s got plenty of food! But in between the turkey and pumpkin pie and leftovers, try to stuff in a cultural activity or two: a film festival, family-friendly theatre, new art, new dance, live music and a big gay party are all something to be thankful for…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (SEPTEMBER 30 TO OCTOBER 6)

Summer is over but Montreal’s busy fall season is about to leave all that fun and sun in its wake. As the days grow shorter this week, the nights light up here: in bars and restaurants – and for outside dining too, in theatres and music venues, in art galleries and cinemas. The weekend starts with an arts and culture bang with Les Journées de la Culture, three days of free entertainment around town and around the whole province…

POP MONTREAL BASKETBALL GAME WITH ARCADE FIRE AND FRIENDS

POP vs JOCK was the Pop Montreal charity basketball game organized by Win Butler and Dexter John of the DJ Sports Club. On Team Pop you had Arcade Fire‘s Win and Will Butler, Chris Tomson of Vampire Weekend, Miracle Fortress‘s Graham Van Pelt and current and former NBA players Matt Bonner and Paul Shirley, while Team Jock was stacked with members of the McGill Redman and Concordia Stingers. Add in Régine Chassagne on the organ and halftime entertainment by Kid Koala and Richard Reed Parry and it seems likely that Win will get his wish to make it an annual event…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (SEPTEMBER 22-29)

There’s officially too much to do this week in Montreal. That’s my professional opinion as a go-er and a do-er. Summer may have its multitude of festivals and picnic-in-the-park ways, but autumn packs a bounty of sights and sounds: over 400 bands and artists fill the city for Pop Montreal, jazz and classical musicians join in the music scene too (not to mention Kanye and Jay-Z), stages come alive with new theatre, dance and circus arts, and fashion, visual art and film bring in creative work from around the world…

FALL HARVEST TIME AT MONTREAL’S MARKETS

There was a time when autumn in Montreal was my favourite season – the crisp air and quickened pace, dappled sunlight on red and yellow leaves in Mont-Royal Park, everyone stylish in their new fall-season fashions. Idyllic really. Yet at some point in the past five years, I became a summer person, happiest in its heat, whether urban frenzy or country calm. High summer is also when I discovered that I really like vegetable farming (in small doses), though a visit to any of Montreal’s markets proves that both farming and farm-fresh bounties continue well into September and October…

EXPLORING MONTREAL’S INSECTARIUM

If you think insects are just the neatest things scurrying across this wondrous planet of ours, then the Montreal Insectarium is a place you need to visit. It’s the largest insectarium in North America, so if you find bugs kind of terrifying, then…well, just get over it, because your kids totally want to go.

ESCAPE TO QUEBEC’S EASTERN TOWNSHIPS

Quebec’s Eastern Townships (known in French as Les Cantons de l’est) have been a travelers’ refuge for centuries- once a destination for homesteading British Empire loyalists in the 1880s, and again a hub for the 1970s-era peace-and-love crowd from over the border in New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine. An hour outside of Montreal, the area boasts sweeping vistas and rolling grasslands, cooling rivers and sparkling lakes, and is sought-after land for agricultural producers, artists and others that make this historical and gorgeous region a rich destination on its own, and a more-than-ideal spot for travelers to spend a night or two on a cross-border road trip to Montreal…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 25-SEPTEMBER 1)

While Montreal’s warm weather will continue well into late September, the beginning of September is nevertheless considered the end of summer, just as with most places in the northern hemisphere. But at least summer goes out with a bang here! The St-Laurent Street Fair sees to that, with the main shopping, wining and dining strip closed to cars and open to fun and carousing all weekend. Add to that a film festival, a burlesque festival and plenty of music and art to take the sting out of summer’s end…