Canoeing the Grand's Ontario Recreational Canoeing and Kayaking Association–certified guides lead expeditions of the gentle, scenic Grand River and its surrounding sites. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, oar dunkers shove off on the country tour package for two. The day dives into an orientation where adventurers energize with fresh muffins and coffee, receive a safety handout, and may request tutelage in basic canoe entering and exiting, paddling, safety communication, and what to do when confronted by a feral kayak. Staffers then shuttle explorers to the St. Jacobs Farmers' Market, where they can peruse farm-fresh produce, meats, and cheeses for two hours before embarking on a 30-minute guided tour of Mennonite backcountry. The tour arrives at the canoe launch, where paddlers can store their purchases safely or bring them on a two-hour guided canoe cruise to barter with great blue heron, river otter, and deer. The day concludes with a barbecue lunch on the riverbank, where the staff bequeaths a limited edition Grand River print in an imported macaroni frame to participants.
Instinct Windsports gives humans the means to defy gravity and evolution. Everyone from beginners to experienced hang gliders can learn the ways of flight, with instructors making safety their top priority. Ground schools explore the gliders and their underlying principles before a scooter-mounted towing winch and a computerized simulator let beginners ease into flight. Although not included with this Groupon, more experienced students can work through certification courses that give them the techniques necessary to soar on their own.
For a safe, immersive introduction to the world of hang gliding, the center’s certified pilots also offer tandem flights. A high-powered winch or an ultra-light airplane tows the duo to as high as 1,500 feet before releasing the glider to the instructor’s control. During the next 10–30 minutes, adventurers gain a birds-eye view of the surrounding area and the possibility of controlling the glider so they can brag to their land-bound pets after landing.
The Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony was founded out of necessity; in 1945, the Grand Philharmonic Choir was preparing a recital and needed tuneful accompaniment for the harmonic voices. Once its backup duty was over, however, the newly convened orchestra quickly established itself as an independent source for both classical and pops concerts performing more than 100 concerts annually in the Waterloo region. Now home to 52 on-staff musicians, the orchestra continues its decades-long tradition at venues around Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, and Cambridge. From his position as music director, Edwin Outwater oversees the joyful noise, which ranges from baroque to Beethoven to the Beatles and Broadway. Since assuming the role in 2007, Outwater has been one of the orchestra's most vigorous boosters, arranging the group's first commercial recording in a decade, engineering an exploration of prog rock in collaboration with the Institute for Quantum Computing, and knitting sweaters for each musician's instrument.
A comprehensive guide to attractions and things to do.