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Fast Facts

Sir John A. MacDonald, credit Queen's University Archives

First Capital Day!

Every year, Kingston celebrates its role as the first capital city of Canada with a First Capital Day festival of special events and activities.

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Arts, Activities & Entertainment

People of every age and ability can participate year round in leisure and recreational activities in Kingston. The community is home to golf courses, parks and conservation areas, sports fields, fitness clubs, tennis courts, public arenas, and other facilities.

The city also has many social groups, special interest clubs and community gardens. Activities range from casual get-togethers to organized events for families, children, adults and seniors. Kingston also offers sports and recreational opportunities for people with disabilities (see Activities & Sports).

Kingston's location on the shore of Lake Ontario lends itself to activities that are not enjoyed by land-locked communities. The Canadian Olympic Training Regatta (CORK), a week-long international sailing regatta, takes place every summer in Kingston and attracts sailors from around the world. Fishing, sailing, windsurfing, and boating are also popular water activities in the warm weather. In winter, Kingston's waterfront is used for ice-skating, cross-country skiing, ice-fishing and other winter activities. Having four distinct weather seasons leads to a wide variety of recreational opportunities.

The city is also home to a vibrant arts community. Kingston has a full-time symphony orchestra and youth orchestra, numerous choirs and musical ensembles, art galleries, museums, theatres, dance groups, potters, weavers and other artisans. Festivals on a variety of themes are held in Kingston throughout the year and draw people from many other communities on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border. Some examples are the Limestone City Blues Festival, Kingston Canadian Film Festival and Kingston Sheep Dog Trials.

Kingston offers many volunteer opportunities that allow newcomers to practise their English- and French-speaking skills, meet people and earn Canadian work experience.

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