1. Meet some local heroes
What child doesn’t dream about being a firefighter at some point? Call the general inquiry line of your local fire services to book a tour of the fire hall (small communities sometimes allow you to simply drop in). Often kids get a lesson in fire safety as well as the chance to sit in the shiny red engine.
2. Make like Bob the Builder
Habitat for Humanity International welcomes volunteers from age five to help provide homes for families in need. Though you have to be at least 16 to work on a build, younger kids can construct mailboxes or tool sheds, help with landscaping and organize penny drives. To find out more, call 800-667-5137 or visit habitat.ca.
3. Make your city new to you
Act like a tourist and visit exhibitions and events. “There are plenty of fun things to see and do in Halifax,” says Moira McConnell, a Halifax mom. “What gets the kids excited is letting them become the vacation planners. We do research together and see what is going on in [local] museums, art galleries, libraries and even shopping malls.” Get older kids to contact your municipal or provincial tourism office for fun ideas.
4. Break the ice
If your family is up for an adventure that won’t blow your budget, embrace the coolness of winter camping. It’s not as difficult as you might think at least, not when you’ve got the right equipment. You’ll need a winter camping tent strong enough to withstand snow and special sleeping bags that conform to the size of your body. Contact Parks Canada (888-773-8888/pc.gc.ca) or log onto camping-canada.com for plenty of need-to-know details.
5. Fly away (cheap!) for the weekend
Your travel budget will go much farther if you consider a shorter trip or visit a less-expensive sunny destination, such as the Dominican Republic instead of Barbados. You can also try flying at the last minute. Reliable travel sites include Travelzoo.com, lastminute.com and priceline.ca.
6. Drive away (usually cheaper!) for the weekend
Want to wander the open roads with a few kidlets in the back seat? You’re not the only one. Canadian families are known for road travel and we’re pretty darned good at it. Check out some great Canadian road trips and plan your own for March Break.
7. Hit the slopes
Fulfilling one child’s interests can benefit the whole family. “My 12-year-old mentioned that he wanted to learn to snowboard this year, and we have a small ski hill about a 45-minute drive outside of Fredericton,” says Mary-Anne Hurley-Corbyn. Her daughter, 4, will try skiing for the first time, too. Check out municipal parks that offer skiing and snowboarding lessons, as well as rentals.
Making this March Break the best ever also means making sure that your family is properly insured. If you are planning on leaving the country call us at 1-800-661-1518 to review your travel insurance needs.
Content author: Hilary Davidson