Skip to main content Skip to footer

Arts, History and Culture in Central Manitoulin

Cherish the outdoors, the land, and the vast freshwater resource of Manitoulin Island for both work and play. Come together with friends, family and neighbours, to enjoy some art, food, music, and a good laugh.


Artists will tell you there is no better subject than the worlds largest freshwater island to find inspiration. Portrayals of agriculture, nature and freshwater lakes are common in Central Manitoulin. Many local artists are on display at the Manitoulin Art Tour and Perivale Gallery.

Local, live music accompanies most events from festivals to markets. See the Sunset Music Series weekly at Providence Bay Beach. Annual festivals include:


Agriculture has always been part of hard work and pride in Central Manitoulin. For a front row seat, visit to the Providence Bay Agricultural Fair held during the third weekend of August. The fair started in 1884 and attracts more than 5,000 people. Take in performances, livestock judging, quilting, agricultural entry judging, rides, food and more.

Central Manitoulin knows food! You will find markets, bake sales, corn boils, strawberry socials, teas, and fowl suppers always coming up soon. Traditions of maple syrup and honey production, baking, canning, foraging, and home gardening carry on from pioneer days.

Softball and hockey are popular pastimes in Central Manitoulin. The town of Mindemoya hosts large scale ball tournaments. The Pearson Cup, Mindemoya Youth Softball Tournament and the Special Olympics regional qualifier. The are has two arenas in Mindemoya and Providence Bay. The arenas host tournaments, sportsman teams and the Mindemoya Minor Hockey Association.

Hunting and fishing for recreation and food are strong traditions on Manitoulin Island. Diverse fields, forest, rivers, and lakes all provide world class hunting and fishing opportunities. Trout and salmon use rivers including the Mindemoya and Manitou Rivers to spawn spring and fall. The community supports the protection of the fish and their freshwater spawning. This protection makes the south shore of the Island on Lake Huron a popular spot for sport fishing. Inland lakes offer most of the common Northern Ontario fish species. Migratory birds and white-tailed deer are popular with hunters. Deer season sees up to 10,000 licenced hunters taking part in the heritage activity.

Central Manitoulin has a rich history of industry in mills, agriculture, forestry, and fishing. Seasonal museums, the Discovery Centre and Pioneer Museum display the history of the area and curated with care by historical societies.

Beaches, lakes and natural wonders draw many visitors to the area. Frequent summer sunsets grace the skies. Thanks in part to dark sky initiatives you can take in spectacular nighttime views of the stars, meteor showers and even the northern lights. Manitoulin Island has 108 inland lakes and 184 rivers and creeks. While most of Manitoulin Island is private property, there are many areas open to the general public. Providence Bay Beach is a two km long sand beach on the Lake Huron coast with sand dunes and a boardwalk. Wagg's Woods Trail is a 42-acre park right in Mindemoya. Lake Mindemoya alone has four public beaches. Each community has public parks and there are seven municipal boat launches for accessing the water.

Our friends in the seven neighbouring indigenous communities offer many valuable cultural experiences. The closest community is M'Chigeeng and is the home to the Ojibwe Cultural Foundation. The foundation "preserves and revitalizes the language, culture, arts, spirituality, and traditions of the Anishinaabe People." The powwow at M’Chigeeng is on Labour Day Weekend and is the last of the Island’s powwow season. Wiikwemkoong offers daily cultural experiences that "are perfect for individuals and families looking to engage their senses and gain a better appreciation for local indigenous culture." The Wiikwemkoong Annual Cultural Festival is held on the August Civic Holiday weekend.

This website uses cookies to enhance usability and provide you with a more personal experience. By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies as explained in our Privacy Policy.