This weekend marks the opening of the Canadian Tulip Festival — the best-known and most colourful flower festival in the country. The event's origins are a part of Canadian history.
The Ottawa Tulip Festival began with a gift from the Dutch monarchy. In the fall of 1945, Princess Juliana of the Netherlands presented Ottawa with 100,000 tulip bulbs. This was to thank Canada for providing a safe haven for members of Holland's exiled royal family during the Second World War
The Ottawa tulip festival (officially named the Canadian Tulip Festival) will be held from May 6 to May 23, 2011. Over these three weeks, as the tulip gardens come into bloom, concerts, lectures, and other performances - both indoor and out - are held as the city celebrates the arrival of warmer weather.
The 59thedition of this iconic national festival will explore the theme of “Kaleidoscope – a celebration of spring awakening through colour, culture and community.” Colour will spread as a mosaic of astonishing tulips bloom throughout the city; Culture will be awakened as the sights and sounds of multicultural traditions are brought alive at the Festival’s International Pavilion presented by Deloitte; Community will be invigorated as festival-goers find family oriented, experienced-based activities for all ages to enjoy, plus the community itself gets involved in contributing to the programming!