10 Activities to Make for an EPIC Southern Ontario Summer

Posted on July 13 2016

10 Activities to Make for an EPIC Southern Ontario Summer

As Illbury + Goose prepares to open a second retail location in Toronto we’re given the chance to reminisce about why we are so proud to call London, Toronto, and the entire province of Ontario our home. It reminds us that our childhoods were metered by hot summers that flew by way too fast, and which were filled with adventure—amazing summers that make it really easy to appreciate being Canadian.

Anyone who lives or grew up in Southern Ontario knows that this province is what Canadian summer dreams are made of—long weekends at the cottage, hot days on the beach, cool treats in the city heat. We’ve compiled a list of just a few activities to get you and your friends on your way to the best summer yet!


10. Hit up the nearest beach.


Ontario is in no short supply of white sandy beaches featuring impressive dunes and fresh, clear waters. Some of our favourite beaches are on the beautiful blue waters of Lake Huron—Grand Bend, Sauble, Bayfield, Port Elgin… to name a few. There’s also Port Stanley, which remains close to our hearts and, conveniently, our homebase in London. Another favourite of ours, Lake Muskoka, offers up some great swimming spots as well, and if you’re sticking closer to “the six” this summer check out some of our new favourites like Sugar Beach, The Beach, Wards Island, or the “clothing optional” Hanlan’s Point.


9. Attend a Music Festival.

There’s no doubt that plans to attend a multi-day music festival featuring an epic line-up of all your musical idols are in the works already, but how do you choose just one?! It’s simple, you don’t. You drop your entire life savings and attend them all. Festival season is well underway, but there’s Rock The Park with our friends Ivory Hours, Wayhome, VELD, some crazy party they call Boots & Hearts, and a new beachside festival in Wasage called Centre of Gravity to round out the season. Summer plans laid out.


8. Spend a day at the park.

If you’re near #LdnOnt hit up Victoria Park, it’s a popular location for drum circles so leave the headphones at home (or don’t). Checking out our new store in Toronto? We’re enviously close to the famous Trinity Bellwoods park. Grab an Instagram-friendly blanket, some lawn games, and invite your 15 closest friends. If you think you may need to step up your park game check out LUMBURR CO for all your park day needs.



Londoners know that Barney’s patio is the place to be the minute the sun comes out to play. The Forest City is also home to The Barking Frog’s patio which is an all-time favourite of ours, and many more just off the beaten path of Richmond Row. In Toronto? Blog TO knows whats up — http://www.blogto.com/toronto/the_best_rooftop_patios_in_toronto/


6. BBQ.


Spend Saturday morning at your local farmer’s market (The Western Fair Farmer’s and Artisan’s Market in London, or St. Lawrence Market in Toronto) and grab all your favourite grillables. Don’t forget to pick up a few pints of your favourite local craft brew! Just fire up the grill, crack a beer, and you’re all set to enjoy the sweet smell of summer charcoal.


5. Head to the cottage or go camping.


If you’re lucky enough to have your own cottage, or have a friend who does, then you’re all set this summer—no friends? No problem. Go camping!


4. Go out to a ball game.


Buy some peanuts and cracker jacks. Drink overpriced beer. Take selfies. Eat really long hot dogs. Get the worst sunburn you’ve ever had and lastly, but most importantly... have fun. 


3. Throw a backyard bash.

Ain’t no party like a backyard party! Step 1: Find a backyard. Step 2: Have a party. Bonus points if the backyard also has a pool. Extra bonus (and reduced fines) if you own the backyard and pool.


2. Have fun being active.


Make the most of the summer weather by going for a bike ride or hike through some nearby nature trails—Ontario offers countless beautiful trails for all sorts of seasonal activities. If you’re the more competitive type, why not organize a sports game or social league with your friends? In London, Forest City Sport & Social Club can help you get started with a league, and if you’re in need of a new bike or a tune-up contact our friends at N+Cycle, they’ll hook you up!


1. Plan a road trip.


To infinity and beyond! There’s nothing better than a summer drive on the open road. Make plans to visit a friend you haven't seen in a while, put together an awesome playlist, and hit the road!


As the weather heats up, so are things for Illbury + Goose—we’re gearing up for a big summer spent taking in all that our home has to offer. Spreading our roots from London and beyond, this means new adventures, new friends, and new favourite places! What kind of adventure will you be embarking on this summer? #FOMO


Follow @illburyandgoose_to on Instagram for updates on the new store location!


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