Speaking to the historical, architectural and horticultural significance of one of Niagara Parks’ most spectacular outdoor venues, remarks will be provided by Niagara Parks Chair Janice Thomson and Niagara Parks Historian Sherman Zavitz. There will also be musical performances by the Niagara Falls Concert Band and the Lincoln and Welland Regiment Band, both of which performed at the original dedication ceremony of Oakes Garden Theatre, which was held on September 18, 1937.
Oakes Garden Theatre and its associated Rainbow Gardens are outstanding examples of design and architecture created to specifically act as a dramatic gateway to Canada, and as such, will serve as the perfect venue to host a Canadian citizenship ceremony. The citizenship ceremony will be presided over by Canadian Citizenship Judge Ted Salci and will allow visitors to welcome and congratulate 20 individuals on becoming new Canadian citizens.
Both special events will allow Niagara Parks to fully showcase the extensive restorative work that has been undertaken to officially recognize and highlight the importance of this architectural and landscape treasure. The rehabilitation work included repairs to the Theatre’s pergola wall and retaining walls, as well as new accessible entrances and pathways to enhance public access and enjoyment of this important public gathering space.
Funding for the restorative work was provided by the Government of Canada’s Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program, as well as capital infrastructure support provided by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.
The rededication ceremony is free for the public to attend. Following the official program, light refreshments will be served as guests are invited to explore Oakes Garden Theatre. Parking and shuttle service to the event will be available at Falls Parking Lot (Lot A). Oakes Garden Theatre is located at 5851 Niagara Parkway, Niagara Falls.
Walking Tours of Oakes Garden Theatre
As part of the celebrations, Niagara Parks will also be offering free walking tours of Oakes Garden Theatre on Saturday, September 16, led by Niagara Parks Historian Sherman Zavitz, Lead Hand Gardener Jeff Klager, and Superintendent of Heritage Jim Hill. Oakes Garden Theatre and the adjoining Rainbow Gardens stand as one of the finest examples of landscape architecture in Canada. Designed by early prominent landscape architects, Dunington-Grubb and Stensson, the facility also features formalized gardens and artwork created by noted Canadian artists, Florence Wyle, Frances Loring and Elizabeth Wyn Wood. Walking tours will be held at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday, September 16.
Rooted Pop-up Dinner Event
Another upcoming event taking place at the newly restored Oakes Garden Theatre will be a Rooted-themed Pop-up Dinner, scheduled to take place on Thursday, September 21 at 5 p.m. The various garden-themed events as part of Niagara Parks’ Rooted initiatives, served as the inspiration for the creative and mouth-watering menu for this Pop-up Dinner, featuring fresh, local ingredients that celebrate and showcase the best of Niagara’s harvest. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit www.niagaraparks.com/popup.
About the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program
The Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program is a $300-million national program, which is being delivered by regional development agencies across the country. This project is one of 730 Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program projects approved in Southern Ontario under the program’s two intakes