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When you head to our neighbor to the north, the first thing you'll notice is the the mansard-roofed Victorian-style "Hotel du Canada." The Canada pavilion's centerpiece was inspired by the Chateau Laurier, a historic hotel found in Ottawa.
It's amazing how they manage to feature an entire country's landscaping into the setting. The colorful grounds are reminiscent of the Butchart Gardens found in Victoria.
The majestic Canadian Rockies are featured complete with a boulder strewn stream that rushes to a 30' waterfall.
There's also a totem pole, and displays of snowshoes and kayaks. The railings have maple leaf cutouts. (There's no shortage of photo ops as you stroll the grounds.)
There are two shopping options in the Canada pavilion, the Northwest Mercantile store and The Trading Post. Upon entering Northwest Mercantile, you will see Kitras Art Glass. These gorgeous ornaments are handmade in Canada to resemble one of the four seasons. The store offers Hatley clothing, Roots fragrances and athletic wear, Deauville perfume, Ice Wines, body care items, and Canadian hockey gear. Christmas ornaments depicting woodland creatures are also found here. Maple products abound at The Trading Post. You can find syrup, candies, tea, and cookies. If you are looking for handmade native jewelry, this store offers ‘O Canada’ (made on Prince Edward Island) and ‘Monague’ (made in British Columbia). Their other souvenirs include Maplefoot Babies stuffed animals, Anne of Green Gables books, BOMA totem poles, and faux raccoon and skunk skin caps.
The outdoor kiosks feature Illuminations CDs, personalized leather and pewter, Canadian flags, t-shirts, pins, mugs and other collectible items.
"The TradNation Project" will be performing through mid-April - A new group, Alberta Bound, will take over May 1
The band's website says:
The TradNation Project introduces the living music and dance traditions of Quebec and preserves this heritage through its transmission across generations and to new audiences wherever it travels. A collaboration between musicians, dancers and dance callers, the project includes two generations of performers from Quebec’s thriving traditional music scene, presenting instrumental, song and dance traditions from the rich cultural heritage of French Quebec.
These award-winning musicians and dancers will perform 5-6 days per week with several sets daily.
In the Maple Leaf Mine, the 360º Circle-Vision theatre shows the film "O Canada!" Canadian native Martin Short is the host. His comedic talents combine with the vocals of Canadian Idol winner Eva Avila singing "Canada (You’re a Lifetime Journey)." Footage was filmed at Calgary, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Niagara Falls, combined with current images provided by the Canada Tourism Commission.
Le Cellier -
sit down restaurant at the Canada pavilion is one of Disney's most requested dining venues. It's popularity combined with its small size has led to problems getting reservations.
If you are able to get a table, one of the "musts" is the Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup. The menu also features steaks, prime rib and salmon.
To accompany your meal, there's a selection of Niagara wines as well as Canadian beers.
If you don't get into the restaurant but crave a Canadian brew, just stop at the outdoor kiosk for a Molson.
All areas of the Canada pavilion are wheelchair accessible.