Discover Burlington Ontario

Free Family Physical Distancing Fun – Arts, Culture & Heritage in #BurlON

by Pam Belgrade

Burlington is so fortunate to have such an amazing array of cultural organizations in our city. Although you can not visit the local theatres, galleries, gardens, and museums right now in person, they have created some free family activities you can do within your household while you practice physical distancing.

FREE online @ Burlington Public Library – Read books, stream movies & music, take courses

The library is continually updating the FREE online resources available to you with a library card. Of course you can read books online, but did you know you can also stream movies, research your ancestry or local history, do at-home fitness workouts, and take art, music and other learning courses?

Artists, authors, and musicians are taking full advantage of technology, bringing events and concerts online to spread joy, share creativity, and help us all feel more connected. Check out the up-to-date and ever-growing list of free author readings & storytimes, music, and arts & culture events that you can attend from home. Look for **New** to see what has been added most recently.  If you’re are looking for things to do at home with the kids, the Library offers reading and activity suggestions and online resources, and online resources recommended by their Children’s Librarians.  Don’t have a library card? Apply online for a FREE library card now.

RBG at Home


Recently the Royal Botanical Gardens launched RBG at Home which offers accessible, diverse and entertaining learning opportunities for all ages online. Celebrate nature’s beauty on the RBG social media channels where you can explore the gardens virtually and dig deeper with a full lineup of resources, activities, and virtual programming.

No matter where you are, you can interact with educators and scientists and explore topics like biodiversity, conservation, botany, plant ecology and the environment. Come with your questions and leave with ideas of things you can do and explore in your own local area. Pre-Registration Required and lessons and activities available for all ages. New topics each week so check back for an updated schedule. FREE to register; donations welcome.

The Museums of Burlington – Quarantine Craft Ideas & Coping with COVID-19

Although Ireland House at Oakridge Farm and Joseph Brant Museums are both currently closed their educators have been busy creating activities you can participate in online. Keep your little ones busy with easy craft ideas or get them involved in the kitchen by trying some recipes from the hearth.

The Museums of Burlington is inviting the local community to send digital files of photographs, drawings, documents and/or videos reflecting how COVID-19 is impacting you and your families.  We are living through a historical event that will impact us and future generations, perhaps in ways we don’t even understand yet. The Museums are collecting stories about how our community is looking out for one another, coping and pulling together. You can email your contributions to Please note, your submissions may be shared via social media, on the Museums website, and/or future exhibitions for the purpose of sparking conversation and learning.

You can also visit the Museums youtube site to see the great facilities, events and programs that are offered.


Art Gallery of Burlington Programs & Exhibitions

Plan a virtual visit to the Art Gallery of Burlington and explore art from current and past exhibitions online at – take a virtual gallery tour of our most recent exhibition, Division of Labour, here!

Host Family Sunday Open Studio in your home! Drop by the AGB’s Instagram Stories (@artgallburl) every Sunday at 1 PM for a creative project you can DIY using everyday items found in your home! Missed a Sunday? Each week’s activity is saved to @artgallburl ‘s highlights. Visit their profile page, tap the Family Sunday icon and learn how to make your own 8-page Zine – a small book you can fill with any topic you choose. 

Did you know that you can rent works of art from the gallery for your home or office. Now would be a perfect time to window shop so that you are ready to arrange something for the future.

BPAC theatre view from main stage

Photo by JustaClick Photography

Behind the Scenes at Burlington Performing Arts Centre

The curtain is down right now at our state of the art Performing Arts Centre however you can still get inspired by checking out their behind the scenes blogs posted on their website. The BPAC staff are working hard preparing for the  exciting new 2020-21 season and we look forward to our community supporting music, theatre, dance and comedy when the curtain goes up once again.

BTTB Christmas ParadeVirtual Concerts

Our global musical ambassadors found a way to come together virtually and share a timely and inspirational song (by video) about unity in these challenging times, all while encouraging donations to our local hospital. This is a wonderful example of how the amazing youth of our community can contribute a great deal of hope and creativity.  They are encouraging Burlingtonians to Band Together and Stay Apart.

cartoon drawings of kids

Fun 4 Kids on Tourism site

Whether you are young or just young at heart you will find lots of fun activities such as games, puzzles and colouring pages, PLUS stories and facts that will help you learn all about Burlington’s attractions and history. Check out stories, games and activities, things to see and do and Burlington wildlife and enjoy Fun Just 4 Kids!

burlington public art guide coverVirtual Public Art Walking Tours and Map

The City of Burlington has created Art and the City, a self-guided downtown public art walking tour. Art and the City is available online and accessible from any mobile device. The free web app offers a new way to explore Burlington’s downtown and learn about public art in the process. The web-based map works across all platforms and allows residents and visitors to tour highlights from the public art collection.

Public art helps to tell the story of our community. Burlington’s public art collection is available online so that you can explore over 85 public artworks throughout the city. View images, locations and artwork information on Burlington’s Public Art Map.

You can also explore Burlington’s diverse cultural resources by visiting Spot Culture.

Heritage homes on Nelson St. with gingerbread fretworkHistory Comes Alive in #BurlON

Heritage Burlington has created two different self-guided walking tours of the downtown. Refer to these flyers to give you some inspiration – Tour 1 focuses on the neighbourhood around the Art Gallery of Burlington and Tour 2 has more of a downtown focus. Review these tours so that when we can once again get outside you have already planned your route. History buffs may also want to visit these other websites to learn more about the heritage of our city:

Cyclists and walkers on Brant St. Pier with promenade and visitor centre/parking garage in the background on sunny early fall dayStaycationing this Summer

Now is a great time to plan for a summer staycation in #BurlON. With some many great things to see and do we thought we would give you some inspiration by checking out the Tourism Burlington youtube channel.


Support Local Bingo

Tourism Burlington created #SupportLocal Bingo that you can play alone, or as a family, to see how many squares you can check off your Bingo card. (print from your browser) 

Bingo card

Other Resources

The City of Burlington has also created a page of free resources and activities from Burlington’s Recreation Services that residents can do at home.

This is a hard time for everyone, but it’s important to remember that we will get through this….Together. We are so lucky to call #BurlON home and when this is behind us, it will feel like a closer community than ever.  We have to keep positive and try to have some fun during all this. Your local arts, culture and heritage organizations look forward to welcoming you back to our creative programs and exciting events when restrictions are lifted and our doors re-open.

Stay strong #BurlON and lets all do our part to Flatten the Curve!

#Arts Matters    #HeritageMatters     #BurlONStrong     #StandbyBurlON   #BurlON


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