Oshawa’s 18th annual peony festival returns in-person events to the city in June

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Published May 17, 2022 at 4:04 pm

Oshawa MPP Jennifer French at the Oshawa Peony Festival

One of Ontario’s Top 100 Festivals is returning to an in-person celebration this summer when Oshawa puts on it’s 18th annual peony festival.

On June 11 and 12 the Oshawa Valley Botanical Garden at 155 Arena St near Adelaide Ave and Kaiser Cr will welcome residents of all ages for numerous events and activities such as;


Residents will be able to bring their own cut peonies to the show on June 11 for a contest at the Children’s Arena on site to find the “best in show” flower. A full list of criteria and categories for entries in available from Oshawa.

Flowers will be judged from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and the winners announced after 11:00 a.m. Entries are open from Friday 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. June 10 and 7:00 to 8:45 a.m. June 11.

There will also be an art show for any artist over 18 to submit their peony interpretation. The people’s choice winner will win a $350 gift card to Curry’s, while 2nd place will get a $150 gift card. The winner will be informed on June 20.

The festival features a photo contest as well be open for submissions of peony pictures from June 13 to July 15. The top three pictures will receive Henry’s gift card worth between $50 and $150, with the winner notified in August.

Many other artists and vendors will fill the gardens to share their wares of arts, crafts, soaps, tools, clothes and food.

The festival will also feature an augmented reality self-guided tour through guest’s cellphones. The technology was developed at Durham College in 2019 as part of Oshawa’s TeachingCity project. Signs posted throughout the park will feature a QR code that, when scanned will educate guest about the park and it’s features.

“We are absolutely thrilled to see the return of the 18th annual Peony Festival which kicks off our first in-person City event in over two years,” said Oshawa Mayor Dan Carter. “With more than 300 varieties of peonies in full bloom, I encourage everyone to join us at the breathtaking Oshawa Valley Botanical Gardens for this milestone occasion. This promises to be a festival to remember!”

The festival comes as part of Oshawa’s proclamation that 2022 is the Year of the Garden. The COVID-19 pandemic led to a great many Canadians embracing horticulture as an outdoor hobby. Year of the Garden found 83 per cent of Canadian households tended some form of a garden in 2021.

“We encouraged everyone in the Garden-Family, from horticulture professionals to horticulture societies and public gardens, to embrace 2022 as an opportunity to share our passion and knowledge to help more Canadians enjoy the benefits of gardens and gardening,” said Michel Gauthier, Executive Director of the Canadian Garden Council in explaining their mission.

Free parking will be available on the street at City Hall and the McMillan parkade. A free shuttle will stop at the Arts Resource Centre at 45 Queen Street, Parkwood  Gardens, and on the northwest corner of Bond St West and McMillan Dr every 20 minutes.

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