The Ottawa Serbian Festival, to take place between September first and third, is the only venue in Canada’s Capital to produce an authentic Balkan dance party. Attendees will have the possibility to watch traditional dance groups, be taught traditional Serbian dances, as well as dance to live Serbian music. And it’s a free party – there is no entrance fee.
The interactive dance experience is not the only thing that makes this festival unique. Ottawa boasts to have only one of three Serbian festivals in Canada, the others being in Calgary and Toronto.
Visitors can attire themselves in traditional Serbian clothing and immortalize the experience in this year’s photo booth.
Food is also a Serbian mainstay. Lamb roasted on a spit and the Serbian version of barbeque, “raznjic”, are big favourites for festival-goers. For the sweet tooth, there are homemade Serbian pastries, amongst a variety of other Serbian delicacies.
Serbia is a sports-rich country and the festival wants to promote “cross-cultural gamesmanship” by offering up a variety of sports activities to anyone interested. There are tennis, soccer, basketball and golf tournaments, as well as a family 5 kilometer walk.
Meanwhile, festival activities are created with participants of all ages in mind, youth included. Each day will include a variety of kids’ activities, starting at noon. The tennis tournament has a youth category, for those aged 18 and under. For the craft enthusiasts, there are classes given by Serbian artists from the National Capital Region in mosaic painting techniques and crafts.
The Festival will be held on the grounds of St. Stefan’s Serbian Orthodox Church, 3662 Albion Road – in the south end of the city. Exact directions can be found on the website, at ottawafest.ca. It will take place on Labour Day weekend, from Saturday, September 1st to Monday, September 3th. Admission is free!