Kick off summer fun with fast cars, sailing races and a strong man competition in spectacular Iceland. Or get in on the action closer to home — Maritime culture, music and food pay a visit to Toronto’s waterfront with Saltscapes.
CAR BUFFS REJOICE
Rev your engines for the long awaited opening of LeMay — America’s Car Museum, is finally here. Opening June 2, the museum explores how the automobile has shaped American culture. ACM’s $60-million campus is one of the largest auto museums in the world and will display 175 cars a day, as well as music, film and photographs throughout its rotating galleries. Located 25 minutes south of Seattle in Tacoma, Wash, it also features a 1.4-hectare show field, theatre, cafe, banquet hall and meeting facilities. Tickets to the grand opening start at $90 for non-members. Regular admission is $14 for adults, $8 for children. Summer hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. See lemaymuseum.org.
More than 2,000 sailors will take to the seas to face 1,000 km of ocean sailing from Newport, R.I., to St. David’s Lighthouse in Bermuda during the 48th Newport Bermuda Race on June 15. As one of the world’s premier blue water sailing events, it’s an ocean racing classic. Yachts arrive in Bermuda three to five days after setting out and to celebrate, the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club opens to the public for yacht viewing and special functions during all week. When you get tired of hulls and sails, take in some of Bermuda’s diverse attractions including world-renowned deep sea fishing, spectacular pink beaches and more golf per square kilometre than anywhere else in the world. See gotobermuda.com.
CALLING ALL VIKINGS
Visit Iceland this month for a taste of the midnight sun. Get in touch with your Viking heritage June 14-17 at the Viking Village in the town of Hafnarfjordur, which hosts a themed summer solstice festival like no other. Viking clothing, instruments, jewelry, crafts, ships and battle re-enactments are on display and plenty of traditional food and drink make this a party not to be missed. See fjorukrain.is. Next, celebrate Icelandic Independence Day from dawn ’til dusk in the nearby capital city Reykjavik on June 17. The family friendly events — colourful parades, street theatre and concerts — are held throughout the city. Don’t miss the Strongest Man in Iceland competition. See visitreykjavik.is.
The shoreline comes alive June 21-24 when Nova Scotia and New Brunswick come together at Saltscapes in Toronto. From travel destinations to attractions, cultural activities to culinary demonstrations and competitions, experience Maritime culture and cheer. This action-packed celebration of life by the water will feature activities along the waterfront all weekend long including musical performances, a food festival, sand sculpture competition, cook-off between East Coasters and Ontarians as well as sailing adventures. This celebration is free and happens at Toronto parks and public spaces on Queens Quay between Spadina Ave. and Jarvis St. See towaterfrontfest.com.
MUSIC FILLS THE HILLS
Tanglewood celebrates its 75th anniversary from June 22-Sept. 2, with a spectacular lineup of musical guests highlighting its rich tradition in a series of summertime concerts. Tune into symphonic music, choral music and pop music as well as musical theatre, contemporary music and jazz. The Boston Symphony Orchestra is also in residence at the festival. Located in the picturesque Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts, it’s a cultural vacation for couples and families looking for an experience beyond the usual country retreat. Artists featured this year include the Boston Pops, John Williams, Keith Lockhart, Diana Krall, James Taylor and Yo-Yo Ma. Tickets start as low as $20 for some performances. See tanglewood.org.
THIS IS SPARTA!
Get in touch with your inner warrior this summer at a Spartan Sprint obstacle course race. This season more than 50,000 Canadians will challenge themselves in the Spartan series races across Canada, each featuring more than a dozen obstacles. While exact obstacles are shrouded in mystery prior to race day, prepare to battle mud, barbed wire and fire on your quest for the finish line. Fun is the focus of a day you’ll never forget. First-time runners and more seasoned competitors tough it out side by side and celebrate in all their muddy glory with a post-race party of music, beer and food. Run on June 24 near Barrie or check spartanrace.com for challenges near Calgary, Montreal, Squamish and more.