March 6, 2012 KLEINBURG, ON – Climbing a tree is popular fun for kids who have nothing to do, and we certainly have plenty of trees at the McMichael…but don’t worry, we have plenty more of other tree-related activities for kids during this year’s March Break, every day! It’s all in conjunction with The McMichael Tree Project, our celebration of the artistic, cultural, and natural aspects of the tree with two breathtaking exhibitions, a variety of programs, and special installations.

From Wednesday to Saturday, March 14 to 17, enjoy a day (or more!) participating in the Canadian Maple Festival, a series of storytelling and art-making activities throughout the gallery. Also during this year’s March Break, we celebrate a very special partnership with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority environmental education experts who will lead a selection of exciting hikes, such as Animal Tracking and Talking to the McMichael Trees. TRCA hikes are every day at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

There will also be En Plein Air Pastel Workshops! Pick up your own sketch box with materials and a stool at the Tom Thomson Shack and head out into the woods for an artistic adventure. You have to bring back the box, but you keep your Tom Thomson-inspired composition.

The Carving Workshop with Ontario Wood Carvers Association will be a perfect introduction to the carving techniques used by experts in the field; and by using soap instead of wood, it’s open to all ages and skill levels!

What else? Children’s favourite performers are back at the McMichael for another March Break run! Live performances are every day at 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.:

  • Wednesday, March 14, Waterwood Theatre presents Mouse Tales. Join us for a funny and engaging puppet show featuring a family of mice, a cat, and of course, a lion.
  • Thursday, March 15, Cosima Grunsky presents Cozy Music. Guitar, ukulele, hand drum, and dulcimer…what’s a dulcimer? Join Cosima with her instruments from around the world for a fun, cozy, and interactive musical performance.
  • Friday, March 16, The Muskoka Wildlife Centre presents Tree Habitat. The Muskoka Wildlife Centre is back with their furry critters! Learn about animals that make their home up in and around the trees.
  • Saturday, March 17, Paddling Puppeteers presents Walking in Your Neighbourwood. The Paddling Puppeteers bring to the McMichael their brand new musical puppet show! Follow Voilet and Marlin as they take a walk around the “neighbourwood” and meet various trees and critters. Experience vibrant colours, lots of fun, and learn about the beauty and benefits of trees!

On Saturday, March 17, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., discover the branches of ability in a welcoming and safe environment with our unique Special Needs Family Art Program, The Tree: Branching Out. The indoor/outdoor studio program (for children and youth with special needs, ages 7 to 16+), begins with a group nature walk along accessible pathways to explore sights and textures, and to collect natural objects. Indoors, participants creatively express themselves through a variety of media by creating tree sculptures, working with malleable materials, and painting/printmaking. After the program, attendees are invited to tour the gallery. Please register ahead of time by visiting our website.

For further information on the above events, and all other programs at the gallery, please see What’s On? at

For information on The McMichael Tree Project and the two exhibitions, The Tree: Form and Substance and The Tree: From the Sublime to the Social, please see Exhibitions information on

About the McMichael Canadian Art Collection

The McMichael Canadian Art Collection is an agency of the Government of Ontario and acknowledges the support of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport. It is the foremost venue in the country showcasing the Group of Seven and their contemporaries. In addition to touring exhibitions, its permanent collection consists of more than 5,700 artworks, including paintings by the Group of Seven and their contemporaries, First Nations and Inuit artists. The gallery is located on Islington Avenue, north of Major Mackenzie Drive in Kleinburg, and is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults, $12 for seniors/students and $30 for families. There is a $5 fee for parking. For more information about the gallery, visit


Media contact:

Michelle Kortinen, Communications Coordinator

McMichael Canadian Art Collection

905.893.1121 ext. 2210