Connecting Lake Simcoe's Community

Celebrate Lake Simcoe festival, on July 22, hosts a swim competition, information booths — and the first Pow Wow to be held in Innisfil.

Celebrate Lake Simcoe was first held in 2010 as a simple lakeside dinner — a generous gift from CLS founder Beverley Else. Participants were invited to enjoy the beauty of and the grandeur that is Lake Simcoe.

Over the years, the festival grew to encompass new partners: War of 1812 bicentennial military re-enactors (2012); the Canaqua Lake Simcoe Swim (2014); the Floating Water Festival (2014); and,  “Sailabration” (2015), in collaboration with Cook Bay Yacht Club.
Since 2010, the festival has provided Innisfil residents and visitors a series of “firsts,” and this year’s 7th Annual Celebrate Lake Simcoe promises yet another.

In collaboration with Barrie Native Friendship Centre, Celebrate Lake Simcoe will include the first Pow Wow to be held in Innisfil. A significant cultural celebration, this one-day Pow Wow offers the opportunity to learn about and participate in First Nations ceremonies, share and celebrate aboriginal culture, shop the artisan market and enjoy fabulous food.

The Pow Wow begins with a sunrise ceremony, from 5:30am to 6:30am, honouring the lake. The grand entry starts at noon, with Master of Ceremonies Beedahsiga Elliot, Host Drum Smoketrail and Head Dancers Lee Benson from Rama First Nation and Abby Carpenter from Six Nations.

Festivities include the 4th Annual Canaqua Lake Simcoe Open Water Swim, from 9am to 11am, with 1K, 3K and 5K races.
From 10:30am to 3:30pm, environmental, conservation and community partners provide education and activities for the public. In celebration of Canada’s sesquicentennial, festival visitors are invited to participate in the “Lake Simcoe Engage 150” — discover and share 150 ways we all can positively impact the lake.

Celebrate Lake Simcoe focuses on families, adults and seniors. Its aim is to bring residents, cottagers and visitors closer to the lake, to give them a better understanding about how to live with the lake and within the watershed to the benefit of both people and nature. It shows the lake as it is today: how we live, work and play on the lake, environmental challenges and current solutions to these challenges. The festival showcases a vision of the lake in the future, featuring future environmental solutions and communities and nature living together in harmony.  

Celebrate Lake Simcoe is being held at Innisfil Beach Park on Sat., July 22, from 5:30am to 5pm. Visit celebratelakesimoce/; visit and like the Facebook page; contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Innisfil Beach Park is open and accessible, with on-site parking and washroom facilities. Admission is free with a food bank donation. All proceeds to Innisfil Community Church. Visitors should bring their own chairs and blankets.

Article courtesy of Celebrate Lake Simcoe. Photo courtesy of Scott Carter.

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