Winter Happens Here - Tour, Skate and Celebrate at Rideau Hall

OTTAWA, Jan. 23, 2017 /CNW/ - Their Excellencies the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, and Mrs. Sharon Johnston invite members of the public to discover Rideau Hall, the official residence and workplace of the governor general in Ottawa. Open to the public year-round, Rideau Hall will feature free special events and activities throughout the winter.

Join us for Winter Celebration on January 28 and the Stanley Cup Homecoming on March 16; and enjoy skating from January 28 to March 26 on our newly refrigerated historic skating rink.

Our beautiful grounds are open daily and guided tours of the historic residence are offered every day (see schedule for more details.)

All activities are free of charge.



Winter Celebration
Saturday, January 28, 201712:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Governor General David Johnston invites visitors to participate in fun winter sports and traditions, such as snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and curling. Young and young at heart can walk around the Embassy Village and discover how different countries embrace the coldest months of the year by enjoying traditional foods and winter activities. Hot chocolate will be supplied to keep visitors warm!

Stanley Cup Homecoming
March 16, 2017 – Schedule of the day to be announced at a later time

As part of the Stanley Cup's 125th anniversary celebrations, visitors can have their picture taken with the Cup, right next to the portrait of Lord Stanley himself. Canada's sixth governor general is the donor of the Cup, the oldest trophy presented to professional athletes in North America.

On this occasion, members of the public can also skate on the historic skating rink where the idea for the famous trophy was born!


Historic Skating Rink and Winter Pavilion
January 28 to March 26, 2017

Visitors can enjoy a unique skating experience on Rideau Hall's historic skating rink, which was first installed in the time of Lord Dufferin, governor general from 1872 to 1878. In celebration of Canada's 150th birthday, the rink will be refrigerated to extend the skating season and the adjoining newly refurbished Winter Pavilion will provide space for guests to put on skates and to warm up. Visitors can also learn more about winter sports and traditions at Rideau Hall through interpretive panels located throughout the pavilion.

Public Skating Schedule (without reservations)
Weekends – 12 noon to 5 p.m.

Group Skating Schedule (reservations required)
Weekdays – 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Weekends – 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Note: Skaters must enter via the gate located on Princess Avenue.


Tour the Residence
January 3 to April 29, 2017 (reservations required)

Members of the public can tour the State rooms where the governor general fulfills official duties, welcomes dignitaries and honours Canadians.

Visit the Grounds
From 8 a.m. until one hour before sunset

Visitors can stroll through the grounds at their leisure and explore the paths of this urban oasis.

Access to site and parking
Due to construction work being done on Rideau Hall's front facade, visitors who wish to access the skating rink must enter the grounds through Princess Gate. All other activities can be accessed via the Mackay and Thomas gates.

Visitors are encouraged to walk or to use public transportation or taxis to get to Rideau Hall. Limited free parking will be available on the streets in the surrounding neighbourhood. Limited parking for mobility-impaired guests will be available on the Rideau Hall grounds via Princess Gate.

For more information about Rideau Hall's activities and guided tours, please call 613‑991‑4422 or 1-866-842-4422 (toll-free); write to; or visit our website at

Please note that Rideau Hall is a working residence; scheduling for all activities is subject to change without notice due to official events.

Follow GGDavidJohnston and RideauHall on Facebook and Twitter.


SOURCE Governor General of Canada

For further information: Media information: Julie Rocheleau, Rideau Hall Press Office, 613-998-7280,

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