Summer is in full swing and there is plenty to do downtown! Make the most out of your summer and check everything off our Summer Fun Bucket List!
1) Go for a dip in the river
With extreme heat warnings becoming more and more frequent, nothing beats the refreshing feeling of jumping in the river! Grab your sunscreen and beach towel and head on over to the waterfront!
2) Attend An Event
There are lots of events happening during the summer! Whether you're looking for music, food, shopping or something fun check out what's happening downtown here.
4) Enjoy a summer exclusive beverage from one of the cafes.
Whether it's refreshing iced tea or a frozen lemonade, check out one of the cafes for a cooling beverage! See the list of cafes here.
5) Eat on a Patio
Dinner with a view! Waterfront sights, beautiful sunsets and historical architecture add to any dining experience downtown!
6) Go on a walking tour
Ghost Walks, Criminal Past Walking Tours, and Waterfront Sunset Walking Tours, all fill summer evenings with fun facts and stories you couldn't even imagine that happened right here in Brockville!
7) Buy that perfect summer piece
Sun hats, vans, maxi dresses, crop tops, no matter your style there's an abundance of choice in fashion downtown. See everywhere to shop here. (Insider tip: loads of stores are already making room for fall items by having sales on their current summer stock)
Cross any of these items off your bucket list? Let us know by using #DowntownBrockville, we may even share your photo on our page!
Vote For Your Favourite Window Display!
Voting has now closed for this contest.
Based on a hydroplane and Canada Day theme, vote for the window you like best! Make sure to stop by and take a look in person before you vote! Once you've taken a look, pick your favourite display below! Scroll to the end of the page to vote.
Brockville Tourism Office:
Stop by Kinda Electronics and vote for them to receive this pin for free!
Thanks so much for voting! Make sure to buy your tickets for the hydroplane races here!
Whether you’re spending a day or a weekend we’ve crafted up this quick guide for all types of travelers! These guides are designed for a day trip or a one night stay. Combine multiple day trips for a long-weekend adventure!
1) The Nature Lover
Lock up your bike at one of our multiple bike locks and get ready to enjoy the river! Rent a kayak, canoe or paddle board and explore the 1000 Islands with guided maps and route recommendations by the Dive Brockville Adventure Centre staff. Or if you’re looking to get in the water, try scuba diving! An introductory class with no experience required lets you explore Brockville’s world renowned underwater dive park.
After an active morning you must be starving! Grab a satisfying and healthy lunch at one of our 2 bike-friendly certified cafes: Boboli and Winniebee's. Both cafes offer delicious sandwiches, soups, paninis, lattes and more that will leave you fulfilled and energized. If you feel like treating yourself both cafes also have a wide selection of desserts and sweet treats!
In the afternoon you’re off to explore even further into the 1000 islands with a boat cruise! Take a complete tour of the 1000 islands on the Brockville exclusive Wild Cat. View Boldt and Singer Castles, 3 historic lighthouses, the shortest international bridge and more on this 2 hour cruise!
It’s time to stretch those legs before getting back on the bike. Take a short 1 km walk through Canada’s first railway tunnel. With the original rock walls and ground water dripping it is an astounding experience. Add in the special effects, lighting and music and it’s the perfect way to refresh your mind and body before heading out.
Head out or BONUS ACTIVITY!
There is no more appealing site than a water front view. Head on down to Block House Island to watch the sun set upon the St. Lawrence River. Watch passing ships, boaters or just embrace being surrounded by nature and watch the beautiful sunset before heading back to one of our bike friendly accommodations.
2) Art Enthusiast
Arrive to town and lock up your bike at one of our abundant bike locks and get ready to explore local galleries. There are three stops on this art tour: 1) From Here to Infinity Art Gallery 2) Kincaid Gallery and 3) Hang Ups Creative Framing gallery. From local artists to world renowned photographers, you’ll get to see a mix of artwork much of which was inspired by the breathtaking views of the 1000 Islands. All of the galleries are located within walking distance of each other and each have bike lock-ups nearby.
After walking the downtown core enjoy a delicious bite at the Brockberry. Enjoy fresh salads, savory burgers or even delicious pad Thai either in their dining room or on their patio.
Cabernet shiraz, Primo Rosso, Riesling VR, Chilean Merlot WV… spend the afternoon getting an inside look at wine making at Bodega Wines! Owner Eric Van Rijswijk opened up this downtown store front to give you insight on what to expect from his services. Wine making is incredible fun and Eric wants to share this passion with you! Have a bottle made, or grab one to go.
Head out or BONUS ACTIVITY!
After checking into your accommodation, get ready for a 5 Star Show! The Brockville Arts Centre presents some of the best Live Theatre and Entertainment concerts in Eastern Ontario and 1000 Islands. The beautifully restored heritage theatre is well known for its comfort, friendly staff and fine acoustics. With multiple shows per week, book your tickets online here.
3) The Local Lover
Arrive to town and stay on the bike for a historical tour of our downtown core. Astounding architecture, historical landmarks, armories and heritage sites are all included on a guided bike tour from 1000 Islands Bicycle Co. The tour ends off at the Brockville Museum where the group will be given time to walk around the museum free of charge. With exhibits on industry in Brockville, the development of the St. Lawrence River, historical figures and more, you’ll leave an expert on all things Brockville!
After an active morning get ready for a delicious meal at Bud's on the Bay. Turkey apple sandwiches, gourmet burgers, seafood, stir-fry, and scrumptious salads are among the few items on their large menu that provides options for even the pickiest of eaters.
Head on over to Tall Ships Landing and check out the Aquatarium. Filled with interactive hands-on exhibits on the history, ecosystems and geology of the St. Lawrence River, this science museum offers fun for all ages. Salt water touch tanks, replicas of British war ships, ropes courses and the stars of the show, the Otters, offers hours of entertainment.
Grab an afternoon pick-me-up at O’Mally Kourt Fudgery. Home to over a dozen flavours of fudge, you can also grab ice cream and other British treats. Try their O’Mally Kourt Sundae: a scoop and a half of ice cream of your choice, your choice of sauce, whipped cream, maraschino cherry and best of all topped with pieces of fudge, and head on over to Block House Island and enjoy views of the river while eating your sweet treat!
Head out or BONUS ACTIVITY!
Explore the world renowned Brockville Tunnel. Bringing tourists from all over the world, take this 1km walk through Canada’s first Railway Tunnel. Ground water dripping, the original tunnel walls, all set to ambient music and lighting makes for a surreal experience.
If you're staying the night make sure to book at our downtown bike-friendly accommodation The 1000 Islands B&B!
Find out about cycling trails in and to/from Brockville here.
Find out where to park your bike here.
1) We Are 1 of 4 Business Areas That Are Certified Bike Friendly in Ontario
Meaning we meet Ontario by Bike's strict criteria all aimed at providing you with the most enjoyable ride possible. From ample bike parking to places to fix any repair, we've catered our downtown core to you and your bike!
2) We Have 9 Certified Bike-Friendly Businesses!
Cafes, restaurants, attractions, welcome centers and places to stay. All specifically trained and modified for you to bring your bike. Check out a more detailed description of all 9 here.
3) Whether You're Here For a Few Hours, Or a Few Days There is Plenty To Do
Spend a few hours at the designated bike-friendly museum. Get a deeper look into Brockville's past and check out some incredible exhibits on industry in the area, our growth with the development of the river and much more.
Canada's First Railway Tunnel
Stretch those legs and take a relaxing walk through Canada's first railway tunnel! Set to ambient music and lighting, get ready for a breathtaking experience!
Creating engaging and thought-provoking hands-on experiences for both children and those who are children at heart, the Aquatarium features interactive exhibits teaching visitors of all ages about the history, ecosystem, and geology of the St. Lawrence River.
Get On The River
Boat cruises to the 1000 Islands, kayak rentals, swimming and more, enjoy a day on (or in!) the water!
Test your teamwork and try to escape this abandon train caboose! A real-life gaming experience presents groups of 2-6 with puzzles, riddles, and clues that when put together, are your ticket to escape!
If you're looking to stay on the bike you're in luck! Go on a historic biking tour with the Thousand Island Bicycle Co! This relaxing 10km tour of downtown visits historic sites like Fulford Place and The Museum! Fun fact, you can also rent a bike from them for half a day up to a week!
4) You'll Travel Along Some Of The Most Scenic Bike Trails in Ontario
Whether you drop in for a snack or have an action-packed day of activities, enjoy the historic, waterfront lifestyle that is downtown Brockville!
We've all seen them, the commercials that end in disaster after someone chooses not to use a realtor. And let's be honest, they're true! Much like you wouldn't DIY your will, why would you DIY a hundred thousand dollar investment? Even if Google says you can.
Not convinced? Here are the top 6 reasons to use a real estate agent from Realtor.com
(Check out the full article here)
"1. They have loads of expertise
Want to check the MLS for a 4B/2B with an EIK and a W/D? Real estate has its own language, full of acronyms and semi-arcane jargon, and your Realtor is trained to speak that language fluently.
Plus, buying or selling a home usually requires dozens of forms, reports, disclosures, and other technical documents. Realtors have the expertise to help you prepare a killer deal—while avoiding delays or costly mistakes that can seriously mess you up.
2. They have turbocharged searching power
The Internet is awesome. You can find almost anything—anything! And with online real estate listing sites such as yours truly, you can find up-to-date home listings on your own, any time you want. But guess what? Realtors have access to even more listings. Sometimes properties are available but not actively advertised. A Realtor can help you find those hidden gems.
Plus, a good local Realtor is going to know the search area way better than you ever could. Have your eye on a particular neighborhood, but it's just out of your price range? Your Realtor is equipped to know the ins and outs of every neighborhood, so she can direct you toward a home in your price range that you may have overlooked.
3. They have bullish negotiating chops
Any time you buy or sell a home, you're going to encounter negotiations—and as today's housing market heats up, those negotiations are more likely than ever to get a little heated.
You can expect lots of competition, cutthroat tactics, all-cash offers, and bidding wars. Don't you want a savvy and professional negotiator on your side to seal the best deal for you?
And it's not just about how much money you end up spending or netting. A Realtor will help draw up a purchase agreement that allows enough time for inspections, contingencies, and anything else that's crucial to your particular needs.
4. They're connected to everyone
Realtors might not know everything, but they make it their mission to know just about everyone who can possibly help in the process of buying or selling a home. Mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, home stagers, interior designers—the list goes on—and they're all in your Realtor's network. Use them.
5. They adhere to a strict code of ethics
Not every real estate agent is a Realtor, who is a licensed real estate salesperson who belongs to the National Association of Realtors®, the largest trade group in the country.
What difference does it make? Realtors are held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.
6. They're your sage parent/data analyst/therapist—all rolled into one
The thing about Realtors: They wear a lot of different hats. Sure, they're salespeople, but they actually do a whole heck of a lot to earn their commission. They're constantly driving around, checking out listings for you. They spend their own money on marketing your home (if you're selling). They're researching comps to make sure you're getting the best deal."
And, of course, they're working for you at nearly all hours of the day and night—whether you need more info on a home or just someone to talk to in order to feel at ease with the offer you just put in. This is the biggest financial (and possibly emotional) decision of your life, and guiding you through it isn't a responsibility Realtors take lightly."
With six real estate companies and two property management groups, you'll have your pick of the litter downtown. So don't worry, you'll find someone who cares just as much about your current or future home as you do! Whether you're looking to buy, sell, lease or just browse there's an agent for everyone.
Source: Stults, R. (2018). 6 Reasons You Should Never Buy or Sell a Home Without an Agent. [online] Real Estate News and Advice | Realtor.com®. Available at: https://www.realtor.com/advice/buy/why-you-should-use-realtor/ [Accessed 18 May 2018].
1) Because you like food...
2)...like a lot (who doesn't?!).
3) Almost more than food, you like saving money!
4) On everything from houseware to clothing. And we're talking about quality products.
5) Did someone say live music?
6) Because why not tucker out the kids so when they get home they go straight to sleep (you're welcome).
7) Let's be honest, we all have a big kid in us too.
8) Seriously there will be a ton of activities that day.
9) While you're having all this fun, you may even learn something about your community!
10) Or discover awesome things that are right downtown!
11) Did we mention the savings?
12) Oh ya, and the food?
Written by: Kendra Lorimer
In addition to supporting the DBIA’s downtown events, here at the City of Brockville’s Economic Development Department we do a number of things to help promote the economic viability of Brockville. You may already be aware that we contribute financial and logistical support for projects that enhance the City, and that we work to market our community assets to attract new investment. However, you may not be aware of all of the ways that our department works within the City to support our local business sector and help make Brockville a great place to visit, live, and work.
Some of the behind the scenes work that you may not realize we are doing include:
- Conducting one-on-one meetings to discuss the needs and concerns of our local business community
- Marketing available properties and land for sale or lease in the City and leading on the development of employment lands
- Promoting Brockville as a destination for new business and as a great place to live through marketing, attending events, and partnering with regional economic development organizations such as the St. Lawrence Corridor Economic Development Commission, Leeds Grenville Economic Development, and the Ontario East Economic Development Commission
- Assisting with a long term strategic action plan for tourism in Brockville
- Funding the installation of free, public Wi-Fi throughout the downtown area
- Working with the Employment and Education Centre and the Thousand Islands Workforce Development Board to find out what kinds of jobs need to be filled in the area and what skills are in demand
- Talking one-on-one with people interested in moving to the area and send out customized relocation packages
- Working on youth retention and new resident attraction strategies including working to acquire new designations for Brockville in order to position the city as a great place to live
- Working with the St. Lawrence-Rideau Immigration Partnership to find the best ways to position Brockville as a welcoming community for all
- Submitting projects for awards to raise the profile of the area generate positive news stories
- Providing support for entrepreneurs and connect them with resources in the community
- Working with businesses to navigate zoning and bylaws to help them find the perfect location for their business
- Providing a list of grants and subsidies that are available for businesses
- Working with local business people to help them grow and to find solutions to any problems they may be experiencing
- Showcasing local businesses and why they chose Brockville on their website and social media
We work regularly with a variety of partners to share resources, deliver services, and cross-promote efforts. We work closely with the DBIA and with the tourism office to ensure that marketing messages are in line and we are limiting duplication. Where there is a chance to partner or share costs to ensure that an opportunity is not missed, we are happy to hear about new ideas and create a plan of action. We are committed to working with as many partners as possible to get multiple viewpoints, streamline projects and ensure that everyone is working towards the same vision and goals.
We want to hear from you!
Do you have a great story on why you chose Brockville as the home for your business or your family? Want to be featured on our website, social media, and upcoming marketing campaigns? We are looking for quotes and testimonials to showcase the region to potential investors and residents and would love to hear from you. Click here to share your story
Looking for Business Support?
Rob Nolan, Director of Economic Development
City of Brockville
Kendra Lorimer, Economic Development Coordinator
City of Brockville
Great Experience at DBIA Student Placement
I am currently enrolled in a two year Office Administration Program at St. Lawrence College. When I went for Orientation day in September, I filled out a ballot to win a $25.00 DBIA gift certificate. The next week I discovered that I was the winner! I went to the DBIA office to collect my win, and when I left the office I immediately thought that this would be a great place to do my placement. Shortly after, I emailed Hillary, the Executive Director, and asked if I could do my placement with her in March. She quickly responded to my email and agreed. She instantly made me feel welcome and correspondence with her was easy. I felt like I had an instant advantage in my program and I was relieved that I did not have to continue in a search.
When I began my placement, I was introduced to Haley, the Events and Communication Coordinator. She enlightened me on many new software programs that the office uses, including Canva, Mail Chimp and Salesforce. I got to see the hard work that she puts into social media daily to promote the Downtown area businesses.
I met many people that work in the Downtown Area, DBIA members, city workers, active community members and more. During my placement was the Spring Into Flavour event, and I took advantage of working at an office downtown by having a few lunches at local eateries, throughout my two week placement. It was very enjoyable.
One of the most interesting components of what I did was look through some old files that were being stored in the basement. Seeing all of the paperwork of previous years of dedication to the Downtown area, and how it all still relates to the Brockville that we have now. I grew up here, and now my daughter is also growing up here. It makes me very proud to know that the City’s downtown is in good hands, with many people trying to improve and keep it a vibrant part of this City.
I have personally seen a huge improvement in the downtown area, in the past 5 years. Downtown events have gone from about 3 events, now up to 8 that the DBIA is solely responsible for. I have followed their social media for a long time, and I have always found great family events that my mother, my daughter and I will attend. We always love the May sidewalk sale that has expanded into Street Eats; the Farmer’s Market is always fun to spend a Saturday morning at; we have also attended the Breakfast with Santa for the past couple of years, and last year we ventured out to the night time Santa Claus Parade.
Hearing about all the new suggestions that Hillary and the DBIA want to bring to the Downtown area is exciting, and I am confident that Brockville will only continue to grow and be a great place to visit.
Among our 300 businesses, it’s fair to say there is a financial advisor or 2. To help you sort through them all, we’ve compiled a list of ones who can help you get through the toughest season of the year: tax season.
CSE Consulting: Host workshops from the Volunteer Bureau on income tax preparation services for low-income earners. You can also book an appointment if none of the workshops fit your schedule!
CARP: Is holding drop-in hours for low-income tax returns at the Chipman centre downtown. Check out their schedule to find a workshop that fits your schedule!
Brian Van Mierlo: Offers tax services for individuals and corporations. They prefer to take a proactive vs. reactive approach to tax services. They aim to minimize your current and future tax liabilities by staying up to date on new legislation. They also offer accounting and consulting services.
Durand and Associates: Offering both corporate and personal tax services. They provide financial advice to reduce liabilities and increase your savings. They don’t sell any products so they’re able to offer you a completely unbiased point of view. They also offer start-up advice for entrepreneurs!
It’s All About Numbers: Amy specializes in owner/operator financials because she is one! Through decades of experience, she can handle your personal taxes, prior years, sole proprietors, owner/operators, and final returns. She’ll help you save money to find the balance between success and enjoying your life.
Mazurek Tax & Business Services: Offering a free consult, the Mazurek's handles a comprehensive tax service that can deal with corporate tax, personal and business tax, rental property tax, amending returns, HST returns and audits. This is Stephen’s 4th year operating his tax prep and accounting services with over 33 years of experience as a small business owner.
MNP: Every transaction you make has an effect on your taxes and with regulations consistently changing it's hard to keep up. MNP's tax advisors are well-versed in the latest Canadian and international tax legislation to ensure you comply with tax laws while paying the least amount of tax possible.
O’Farrell financial: Offering a comprehensive service that is custom tailored to each individual, they’ll answer the “what can I do with my money to reduce what I give away to the government?” questions and have you saving more than you thought possible this tax season. They also deal with other services like employee benefits and farm succession planning.
Turn of the Century: Providing superior and complete assistance in financial and estate planning consulting clients on all aspects of planning including tax implications. They also deal with marketing the chambers of commerce group insurance plan, personal investments and so much more.
There are plenty of options when it comes to financial advice downtown! No matter what your circumstance someone is always happy to help. For a complete list of all downtown services, click here.
We're very excited to have a new downtown Brockville team member- Chris Hebert! Hired as our 2018 photographer, we wanted to learn a bit about who will be capturing us mid-bite or jumping on the bouncy castle during this year's festivals!
While completing his Media Arts diploma in 2012, Chris found himself one credit short from graduating. With black and white photography the only class that fit his schedule, he was in for life altering events!
Taking colour out of photos means you have to shift focus to other points like texture or buildings.
Brockville, filled with textures and buildings, was the Holy Grail for Chris' final project!
One visit later Chris fell in love and was eager to learn more about our city.
It turns out that he has strong roots within the Leeds and Grenville region. His loyalist ancestors settled in South Augusta in 1784. During the war of 1812, Sir Isaac Brock plus a group of soldiers even spent the night in his ancestors' basement! His 5x great grandmother's cousin founded the village of Landsdowne and is the namesake of the Landon Bay Nature Park.
Currently, Chris is living in Quebec after completing a second diploma in professional photography from Concordia University.
Embracing the warm weather and festivals, you can catch him in Brockville majority of the weekends during the summer.
Check out some of his best shots in this year’s tourism guide or from past RHB festival albums! You can also check him out on Instagram for unique views of our downtown @dominionphoto182