Press Release

Ontario Culture Days Festival Begins September 22 with Over 1,000+ Arts & Culture Events

in Residence, Festival Hubs Community Driven Events Ignite a Province-wide Celebration of Arts, Heritage and Diversity!

TORONTO – August 15, 2023 

Today, Ontario Culture Days is thrilled to announce the highly anticipated 2023 province-wide festival, set to take place from September 22 to October 15. Building on the resounding success of previous years, this year’s festival promises to celebrate arts, culture, and community spirit like never before. With the participation of hundreds of event organizers across the province, the festival will present a diverse range of arts and culture events to captivate and inspire audiences of all ages and backgrounds.

Since its inception, Ontario Culture Days has provided a platform for creativity and self-expression, bringing together communities and fostering meaningful connections. This year’s Festival will once again showcase the rich tapestry of Ontario’s cultural offerings, from inclusive family-friendly activities to awe-inspiring professional performances across various artistic disciplines.

Gary Filan, President and Chair of Ontario Culture Days, said “Ontario Culture Days is always the perfect time to get out there and explore the incredible cultural offerings across our wonderful province. Whether planning a Thanksgiving road-trip or exploring your own neighbourhood, this year’s Fall Festival promises to be an unparalleled celebration of creativity, diversity, and the power of artistic expression.”

Throughout the Festival, communities across Ontario will come alive with an array of free activities suitable for every taste and interest. The Ontario Culture Days events page will serve as a comprehensive resource, featuring hundreds of events and activities scheduled throughout the province.

Ruth Burns, Executive Director of Ontario Culture Days, expressed her delight with the overwhelming response from community organizers, saying, “We are thrilled to see such strong enthusiasm from communities across Ontario. It is heartwarming to witness how Ontarians are eager to come together and celebrate the culture in our neighbourhoods and beyond. Responding to the increased number of events, we have introduced 13 Festival Hubs strategically located in cities and towns to help visitors explore different areas of Ontario with ease. Additionally, the Creatives in Residence program, now in its fourth edition, continues to shine a spotlight on unique artistic projects from across the province. With a multitude of free events, the 2023 Festival presents the perfect opportunity to experience the vibrant spirit of Ontario.”

13 New Festival Hubs

Festival Hubs are local partners that act as community leads for the Festival, playing a crucial role in fostering artistic expression and engagement. With an increase in the number of Hubs to thirteen, Ontario Culture Days continues to strengthen its ties with communities across the province, providing diverse programming to more participants than ever before. This year’s Festival Hubs are Elora/Fergus, 1,000 Islands and Gananoque, Guelph, Halton Region, Ottawa Region, Sault Ste. Marie, Scugog, South Georgian Bay, St. Catharines & Niagara Region, Thunder Bay, Toronto (Queen West), Vaughan and Windsor. Each Hub has a dedicated event page allowing visitors to easily select what to do in that area during the festival.

ON Culture Guides

The Festival marks an excellent opportunity to explore different regions of Ontario and be a cultural tourist. This year, Ontario Culture Days developed easy-to-follow travel guides for regions across the province. The guides provide arts and culture itineraries enriched by local input for visitors to follow to get the most out of weekend activities this fall. ON Culture Guides can be found here.

Creatives in Residence

The Creatives in Residence artists undergo a transformative 5-month long residency program, collaborating closely with local communities to showcase the dynamism of Ontario’s arts and culture landscape. Their remarkable outcomes culminate in community-based activities and exhibits during the 2023 Fall Festival, this year inspired by the theme of material culture.

  • Toronto & Guelph: Alisa McRonald “Fables in Yarn” exhibition and collaborative art creation
  • Thunder Bay: Betty Carpick, “The Land is Dancing” artist talk, public art projection, and drop-in maker session
  • Temiskaming: Chelsea Smith “Maawanji’idiwag: They Come Together” exhibition, artist talk and experiential workshop
  • Ottawa: Juliane Foronda, “Notes on Play” public art installation and drop-in workshop
  • Toronto: Kevin A. Ormsby & KasheDance, “Kultcha Live Yah” workshops and showcase
  • Pickering: Mushtari Afroz, “Choreo-xperience Public Spaces” dancer takeover, artist talk with interactive performance
  • Toronto: Myung-Sun Kim, “Rituals for Belonging” exhibition, gathering and artist talk
  • Toronto: Owen Marshall, “Six and a Half Flags over Queen Street West” public art installation, artist tours, and workshop

LISTING INFORMATION         Ontario Culture Days                                      

Dates:                                       September 22 – October 15, 2023

Price:                                         FREE

 Event Link:                     

Hashtag:                                   #ONCultureDays

Photos of the 2023 Creatives in Residence can be found here.

Photos of the 2023 Festival Hubs can be found here.

For more information on Ontario Culture Days, visit our website at 

About Ontario Culture Days:

Ontario Culture Days is a not-for-profit organization that celebrates artists and cultural groups in our communities.

The Ontario Culture Days Festival is an annual celebration of arts, culture and heritage taking place each fall across the province. Each year, we work with organizers of all disciplines to produce this province-wide festival. Organizers host programs throughout Ontario and invite the public to participate for free. The next Ontario Culture Days Festival will take place between September 22nd to October 15th, 2023.

Ontario Culture Days lives at the local level. We support organizers from the smallest hamlets to the largest cities while coordinating with other national and provincial Culture Days partners. We support the success of our sector colleagues through resources and network development while highlighting the breadth and heterogeneity of Ontario’s arts and culture to the wider public.

A sincere thanks to Ontario Culture Days’ supporters, including Ivy Charging Network, Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG), VIA Rail Canada, Arterra Wines Canada, Destination Toronto, Destination Northern Ontario, Star Metroland Media and the Toronto Star.  

These programs would not be possible without the support of the Government of Canada, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Province of Ontario, the Ontario Arts Council, the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund, and the Toronto Arts Council.

The Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund is a program of the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, administered by the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund Corporation.

For further media information, contact:

Deanne Moser. 647.888.9388