Farm Hop Returns!

Back by popular demand, three area farmers are once again getting together to offer Farm Hop, a local farm tour around Wakefield and La Pêche, this Sunday, October 1 from 10am-4pm.

Three neighbouring Wakefield-area farms: Juniper FarmsFerme et Forêt and Roots and Shoots Farm have once again joined forces to offer you a fall festival to remember. Pick pie pumpkins, ride on hay wagons, partake in a farm tour, visit farm animals, see sheep being sheared, listen to live music, stock up on fall food, have lunch, and celebrate the season. You won’t want to miss it! All three farms have great recipes and activities planned!

For cycling enthusiasts, Expeditions Wakefield will once again be leading a Farm Hop Cycling Tour. The tour, which is approximately 30km in length, will start at 10am at Expeditions Wakefield. The Tour, which is open to experienced and novice cyclists alike, will start from 721 Riverside up to Chemin Maclaren, to Chemin Shouldice where will make our first stop at Juniper Farm. Following a stop a Juniper Farms (where rumour has it they will offer up a homemade stew, amongst other goodies!), the cycling tour will make their way to Ferme et Forêt, and then onto the final stop at Roots and Shoots Farm before making their way back to Wakefield along route 366. The ride will be casual and open to all ages and abilities.

Admission to Farm Hop is free, but be sure to bring some cash for food and drink tickets which can be purchased at each farm.

For more information visit www.farmhop.ca

All Aboard to Save the Wakefield Steam Train!

It is now or never – help us raise the funds required to bring this iconic steam train back to its home in Wakefield, Quebec! Your donation will ensure that this “steam age gem” is returned to its home in the Gatineau Valley!

It has been six years since the HCW Steam Train ran to Wakefield and back, when stopped by track washouts between Chelsea and Hull. A calamitous storm caused millions of property damage and has kept the “P’tit train à vapeur” from leaving the depot. To the many thousands of passengers that have experienced a train journey along the exquisite Gatineau river, and the slow passage through the centre of the picturesque Wakefield Village, or a special gastronomic experience on the “sun-downer special” – the loss of this iconic Outaouais tourist attraction was devastating!

Attempts continue to find new investors but it is now or never to move the steam train back home to Wakefield. All the equipment is owned by the local, not-for-profit Compagnie de chemin de fer de l’Outaouais (CCFO). This campaign is to finance relocation by road. Our objective is that locomotive “909” with two of its carriages will be given a second life as part of a Gatineau Valley heritage rail display! Can we do it? You bet – Wakefield volunteers organized and re-built its precious red covered bridge!

This railway has served the valley communities for over 100 years and helped build the settlements and economy. The “909” will stand ready to operate again as part of an informative heritage display. This move will buy us time to work towards launching the only operational steam train active in Quebec!

To donate visit the Wakefield Steam Train crowdfunding page.

Top 10 Christmas Gifts to Find in Wakefield

With only three days left until Christmas, why not skip the line-ups at the mall and do the rest of your Christmas shopping in Wakefield this year?

Stumped for ideas? Here’s a list of Top 10 Christmas gifts to find in Wakefield this week:

  1. A Pang hat from Expéditions Wakefield. Made in Canada and hand-crotched from 100% Canadian wool on Baffin Island. These toques are one of a kind and will keep you warm for decades.
  2. Stocking stuffers from La Confiserie. Hand made chocolates, fudge, preservatives and more! La Confiserie is open until 5pm on December 24 for all of your last minute stocking-stuffer needs.
  3. Clothing and Jewelry from End of the Line Boutique. Unique options for that hard to buy for person on your list.
  4. Locally made, fair trade coffee from Bean Fair and Blue Barn coffee. These can both be found at the Wakefield General Store. Blue Barn coffee is also proudly sold at Café Molos.
  5. Gift Certificate for a spa treatment at the Wakefield Mill.
  6. Toys for your pets from Petalia! Spend some quality time with your pets this holiday season and find them a new treat or toy from Wakefield’s local pet store.
  7. Gift certificate for a Fat Bike rental at Expéditions Wakefield- it is the only place where you can rent a Fat Bike and ride directly from the shop to the trail!
  8. Cozy wool blankets and other fine hand made products from the Jamboree. Take note that they will also be open New Year’s Day!
  9. A gift certificate to any of Wakefield’s restaurants including Chez Eric, Maison du Village, Kaffe1870, the Wakefield Mill, Rutherford’s or Le Hibou.
  10. A gift certificate for a weekend stay at the historic Les Trois Erables B&B.

The majority of Wakefield shops will be open until 3pm on Saturday, December 24.

Be sure not to miss Christmas Eve at the Fairbairn House for carol singing, tree decorating, hot chocolate and cider, Christmas cookies and more!

Christmas Lighting Ceremony in Wakefield on November 19th

Each year, the Wakefield community is proud to carry on the tradition of the annual Christmas lighting ceremony along the riverfront parks.

Come light up Memorial Park in Wakefield on Saturday, November 19 and enjoy Fair Trade hot chocolate — countdown begins at 7:00pm! 

We hope that this year even more lights will be put up throughout the village. Let’s make this the start of a beautiful new wave of lights!

Prior to the lighting ceremony, be sure to grab a meal at one of our many fine village restaurants, or perhaps a beverage at one of our pubs. You can catch at show at the Black Sheep Inn, where Maple Hill and The Pie Plates take the stage at 8:30PM.

The Christmas countdown is on in Wakefield….come and experience the Holiday season with us!

Canadian Championship Dryland Dog Racing

The Canadian Championship Dryland dog races are coming to Bristol, Quebec October 29-30, 2016.

Have you ever dreamed about spending a day dogsledding across the frozen fields of Quebec? Perhaps you have already had the fortune of participating in such a unique experience that dates back in time when Canadians used dogs to travel during the winter months.

Do you ever wonder how these athletic canines stay fit when there is no snow? Many mushers practice dryland training during the off-season, a discipline that includes bikejoring, canicross and cart training with teams of up to 8 or more dogs. In fact, more and more people are even taking to bikejoring (where a team of dogs pulls a cyclist) and canicross (cross country running with dogs) as a recreational hobby.

Enter the Canadian Championship Dog Races. The 7th annual Bristol Dryland Canadian Championship Dog Race will take place at Timberland Tours, a short 45 minute drive West of Wakefield.  The race is run on a sandy trail that winds through a beautiful pine forest on the Timberland Tours property. Spectators can watch racing in a number of categories including: scooter, canicross, bikejoring and 4, 6, and 8 dog rigs.  Several viewing points are available including the start and finish bleachers, a high rise stand, and along an access path that cuts through the forest and crosses the racetrack.

2013 World Champions, Jessica Doherty from NY and Kati Dagenais from QC, are regular competitors.  With the largest purse of over $10,000 it is one of the biggest dryland races in the world.

Spend the weekend doing something different and seeing some of the fastest dogsledding teams on the planet! Admission and parking are free.  No pets please.  Vendors will be on site with warm food and beverages as well as some merchandise.

When you’re done watching the races, head east on Hwy 366 towards Wakefield and be sure to drop in for a bite to eat or stay the night!

For more information and a schedule for the weekend events, please visit www.bristoldryland.ca

Directions from Wakefield:

Head west on Chemin Riverside toward Chemin de la Vallée de Wakefield
Turn left onto Chemin de la Vallée de Wakefield
At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Route Principale E/QC-366
Keep right to stay on Route Principale E/QC-366
Pass through Lac des Loups and continue straight onto Chemin Lionel-Beausoleil
Chemin Lionel-Beausoleil turns slightly right and becomes Chemin du Lac-des-Loups
Slight right onto Chemin Ragged Chute
Timberland Tours is located at 36 Chemin Ragged Chute.