Weekend Wonders: Explore, Play, and Learn in Thunder Bay

Does your family gather together around the table at least three or four times a week?
Does your family gather together around the table at least three or four times a week?

Discover the city’s vibrant offerings and plan an enriching weekend for the family in Thunder Bay

Thunder Bay – LIVING – Explore Thunder Bay this weekend with family-friendly activities, sports, markets, a dinner planning exercise, and live theatre, lets get started:

A Weekend of Discovery and Fun Awaits in Thunder Bay

Embrace Educational Adventures Take advantage of the weekend by offering your children a glimpse into their potential futures with an informal tour of Lakehead University. Expand their horizons further with visits to the Thunder Bay Historical Museum and the Thunder Bay Airport, showcasing the rich history and bustling connectivity of our city. The International Friendship Gardens await to provide a colorful and diverse representation of Thunder Bay’s community spirit.

Saturday Spectacles: March 16

Market Mornings: Fresh Finds and Local Treasures

Rise early and immerse yourself in the community vibe at the Thunder Bay Country Market. Located at the Canadian Lakehead Exhibition, this market offers an array of local groceries, crafts, and gifts from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Continue your exploration at The Peddler’s Pop-Up Market at The Hub Bazaar from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., where unique vendors promise an unforgettable shopping experience.

Theatre Thrills: Stories That Move

Magnus Theatre’s presentation of Tell Me on a Sunday by Andrew Lloyd Webber offers a musical journey through love and discovery.

Meanwhile, Cambrian Players brings to life The Snow Queen, inspired by Marianne Wahl’s visionary designs, for a limited engagement. Don’t miss these captivating performances that speak to the heart.

Sports Spotlight: Cheer on the Kam River Fighting Walleye

Experience the thrill of local hockey as the Kam River Fighting Walleye face off against the Red Lake Miners.

Join the passionate fans at the NorWest Arena for a game filled with excitement and community pride. Remember, the puck drops at 7:45 pm—don’t miss out!

Family Feast: A Journey from Kitchen to Table with the Grandkids

Gathering around the table for a family dinner is more than just sharing a meal—it’s about creating bonds, sharing stories, and making memories. Involving your grandchildren in the entire process, from menu planning to cooking and eating, offers a treasure trove of learning opportunities and fun. Here’s how you can transform a regular family dinner into an enriching experience for all.

Step 1: Planning Together

Start with a family meeting to decide on the menu. Encourage each grandchild to suggest a dish or ingredient they love. This is a great moment to teach about balanced meals, including proteins, vegetables, grains, and fruits. Make a list of the needed ingredients to bring along on your shopping trip.

Suggested Menu:

  • Mini Chicken Quesadillas: A customizable and hands-on recipe for kids.
  • Rainbow Vegetable Skewers: Colorful, healthy, and fun to prepare.
  • Fruit Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing: A sweet, fresh dessert that kids can easily help chop and mix.

Step 2: Shopping as an Adventure

Turn grocery shopping into a scavenger hunt. Assign each grandchild an item to find, teaching them how to select fresh produce and compare prices. This is an excellent opportunity to discuss the importance of local produce and nutrition.

Step 3: Cooking Together

Assign tasks based on age and ability, ensuring everyone has a role. Younger children can wash vegetables or stir ingredients, while older ones can help with chopping (under supervision) or assembling dishes.

  • Mini Chicken Quesadillas:
    • Ingredients: Tortillas, cooked chicken, cheese, and various toppings (beans, corn, tomatoes).
    • Let each child customize their quesadilla with their chosen ingredients, then cook on a skillet until the cheese melts and the tortillas are golden brown.
  • Rainbow Vegetable Skewers:
    • Ingredients: Cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, zucchinis, mushrooms, and any other colorful veggies.
    • Children can thread the vegetables onto skewers. Grill or bake until tender.
  • Fruit Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing:
    • Ingredients: A mix of berries, melons, and other seasonal fruits, dressed with a mix of honey and lime juice.
    • Kids can help chop the fruit (if age-appropriate) and mix the dressing.

Step 4: Setting the Table and Dining Together

Let the grandchildren help set the table, perhaps decorating with some DIY placemats or napkin holders they’ve crafted. As you enjoy the meal, encourage conversations about the day’s activities, what they learned, and what they enjoyed the most.

Engaging Beyond the Meal

  • Reflection Time: After dinner, have a round of reflections on the meal and the process. Ask what they loved about the day and what they would want to do differently next time.
  • Recipe Scrapbook: Start a family recipe scrapbook, allowing the grandchildren to add pictures and notes about each dish they help create.
  • Cooking Certificates: Create fun certificates for the grandchildren, celebrating their roles in the meal preparation, such as “Best Vegetable Chopper” or “Master Mixer”.


A family dinner with the grandchildren, infused with participation, laughter, and learning, becomes much more than just a meal—it transforms into a cherished memory. By involving them in every step, from planning to cooking and eating, you’re not just teaching valuable life skills; you’re fostering a sense of accomplishment and togetherness. So, aprons up and ready, set, cook for an unforgettable family feast!

Make Your Weekend Count

Thunder Bay is brimming with opportunities to create lasting memories with your family. From sports and markets to educational tours and theatrical performances, there’s no shortage of ways to engage, learn, and enjoy. Plan your weekend adventure and embrace all that our city has to offer.

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