April not only marks spring in Montreal, but a whole slew of events that the new season ushers in.
This month, Montrealers far and wide will have the opportunity to experience a Harry Potter concert, the Tony Award-winning musical Book of Mormon, a Toronto Blue Jays baseball game, a designer fashion show, a new Cirque du Soleil performance, and all sorts of culinary festivals, from $1 coffee week to mac and cheese week 2017. In essence, April is shaping up to be a pretty great month.
In need of a little springtime inspo? Check out 21 things to do in Montreal this April.
Don’t miss your chance to see the magic brought to life at PDA! Experience Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone In Concert courtesy of Place des Arts. For the first time in history, Montrealers are being given the chance to relive the magic with a screening of the first Harry Potter film accompanied by a live orchestra. The 84-piece symphony orchestra led by conductor Justin Freer will perform every song in the film note-for-note, including the iconic score by John Williams. In addition, the film will be projected onto a 40-foot screen with French subtitles. This one-of-a-kind event will take place for two nights only this April. Get ready to be enchanted.
When: April 8-9
Where: Salle Wilfrid Pelletier, Place des Arts
The Tony-Award winning satirical musical Book of Mormon is returning to Montreal this spring! Telling the story of two Mormon missionaries as they visit a village in Uganda and attempt to share their religion, the show (brought to you from the creators of South Park) is sure to sell out quickly! Coming to Place des Arts’ Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier between April 18th and April 23rd, you have exactly 8 opportunities to see this fantastic show. Don’t miss your chance to see this clever, laugh-out-loud show!
When: April 18-23, 2017
Where: Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier
The Toronto Blue Jays are returning to Montreal this spring for a two pre-season games against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Taking place on March 31st and April 1st at Olympic Stadium, Montrealers will have the chance to see an MLB game in the comfort of their own city. The Friday night game starts at 7 pm, while the Saturday game begins at 1 pm. Given that it is the pre-season tickets are extremely affordable, ranging in price from $24.50 to $99.50. And even if Montreal has a long-standing rivalry with Toronto (not to mention its sports teams), we must admit that the Jays had a pretty good season last year, making it to the American League Championship series, only to lose to the Cleveland Indians.
When: March 31 and April 1
Where: Olympic Stadium
Toronto’s Harry Potter-inspired resto-bar, The Lockhart has opened a second location in Montreal! The magical apothecary and 45-seat resto-bar opened its doors on March 24th at 3979 Rue St. Denis. Signature potions and elixirs like Betterbeer and Befuddlement by the pitcher have been replicated on the new Montreal menu, while other features include a tapas menu, street-facing terrace, and eventually, events like Trivia Nights, Magic Nights, and more to come.
When: Tuesday to Friday 5 pm-12 am, Saturday and Sunday 5 pm-2 am
Where: 3979 Rue St. Denis
Are you still in mourning over the loss of our city’s beloved MLB team, the Montreal Expos? We certainly are. Luckily, there is a fan fest for all of us to get our Expos fix. Expos Fest returns to Montreal this April. It is the second edition of this baseball festival/charity fundraiser, with last year’s event welcoming over 2,000 visitors. Special guests at the 2017 edition of Expos Fest include Dennis Martinez, Cliff Floyd, Andre Dawson, and several more. At the festival, former players will give talks and be auctioning off signed memorabilia such as balls, bats, jerseys, and autographs. Proceeds from the festival will go towards the Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation and Mayor Denis Coderre will be opening the day’s festivities. If you’re a die hard Expos fan, this is the place to be come Sunday, April 2nd.
When: April 2, 2017
Where: Plaza Centre Ville, 777 Boulevard Robert-Bourassa
Although the bustling urban city of Montreal is not home to any sugar shacks, you won’t have to travel far to get an authentic Quebec experience. Whether you love the horse-drawn carriage rides or the plethora of maple treats, there are plenty of reasons to visit a sugar shack this winter. Typically open from late February to April, some of the best (and closest) sugar shacks to Montreal include Sucrerie de la Montagne, Cabane à Sucre Au Pied Cochon, and Cabane à Sucre Bouvrette.
When: End of February to mid April
Where: Various locations
Daybreaker, an early morning dance movement that is sweeping the globe, returns to Montreal on April 1st for the yoga/dance event of the year! Daybreaker MTL: The Future is Female celebrates life with a lineup of yoga, dancing, and healthy food. In an effort to promote a “healthier, more balanced world,” The Future is Female will feature a two hour dance party, a yoga session with Luna Collective, free cold brew coffee, fresh pressed juice, and breakfast treats, and Bio K+ probiotic smoothies. Wear whatever makes you feel like Queen Bey and get ready to dance in an inclusive, uniting, and powerful setting. In essence, this is your chance to dance with reckless abandon while getting a workout and meeting some inspirational Montreal ladies.
When: April 1, 10 am-1 pm
Where: Theatre Fairmont, 5240 Park Ave
Calling all shopaholics! Just in time for spring, the Big Fashion Sale by Quebec Designers arrives in Montreal this April. As one of the biggest shopping events of the year, it is taking place over the course of four whole days. Happening at Bonsecours Market between April 6th and April 9th, Montreal is kicking off the sale’s Quebec tour. Hundreds of designers will be represented, all of which will be selling clothing and accessories that are discounted between 50% and 70%. Participants include the likes of Rudsak, Cherry Bobin, Luc Fontaine, Mia More Collection, Eve Gravel, Nisse, Nadya Toto, Winnie Fashion, Sosie Sosie, Slak, GROB, Blush Lingerie, and many more.
When: April 6-9
Where: Bonsecours Market
Canadian entertainment company, Cirque du Soleil, returns to its hometown this spring to perform its newest show, VOLTA. Volta is the travelling company’s latest show which tells a story centered on the freedom to choose and create your own path. Inspired by action sports, the show will feature a series of acrobatic stunts, an emotional score, a “visually striking” set, and a spiritual theme. Prepare for one of the most raw and emotional stories ever told by Cirque du Soleil.
When: April 20-July 2
Where: Under the Big Top, Old Port of Montreal
On April 1st and 2nd Palais des Congres will be taken over by The Outdoor Adventure Show. The exhibition boasts Quebec’s largest collection of outdoor gear and adventure travel experiences. There will be over 200 exhibitors in total, showcasing everything from tents and backpacks to paddle boards and scuba diving gear, in addition to 50 presentations highlighting some of the best travel packages out there. The Outdoor Adventure Show in Montreal will also feature two special rooms. The first is a Paddlers’ Paradise where exhibitors will run canoeing, kayaking, and stand up paddle boarding demonstrations in a 30’ x 50’ pool. The second is Scuba World, an exhibition dedicated entirely to the magic of scuba diving. It will have information on destinations, courses, tour operators, accreditation, and gear.
When: April 1-2
Where: Palais des Congres
Everyone knows that Montreal’s coffee scene is on fire. Whether you prefer Mile End institution Olimpico, or newly opened Pigeon Espresso Bar, you can’t deny that Montreal is a great place to get a cup of joe. Luckily, J’aime Mon Cafe is making coffee that much more accessible by hosting a $1 coffee week in Montreal. So far, the company has partnered with 30 independent coffee shops across the city, all of which have agreed to sell coffee for a mere loonie between April 24 and 29, 2017. As of right now, participating Montreal cafes include Cafe Osmo, Coffee Perko, Barcelona Bar Espresso, My Little Cup Montreal, Yes But No, and many more.
When: April 24-29
Where: For a map of participating restaurants, click here.
A festival entirely dedicated to showcasing the best mac and cheese dishes available in Montreal, Mac N’ Cheese Week 2017 is sure to be pure heaven. The festival will take place between April 3rd and April 10th, which means you have exactly one week to gorge yourselves on one-of-a-kind mac and cheese creations. Nearly thirty restaurants in the city are participating including Reuben’s, Faberge, Olive + Gourmando, Wienstein & Gavino, EVOO, Suite 701, Deville Dinerbar, Burger Royal, Les Enfants Terribles, and Le Cheese. For a complete list of participating restaurants in Montreal (as well as in Toronto and Quebec City), click here. To RSVP to Mac N’ Cheese Week 2017, click here
When: April 3-10
Where: Various locations
Titled Monster Spectacular, 2017 marks the 29th edition of this exciting monster truck event. Suitable for parents and children, Monster Spectacular promises to deliver an action-packed show full of incredible stunts. Some of the best and biggest monster trucks will be making an appearance including the Red Baron and the Bounty Hunter. In addition to trucks, the event will also feature freestyle motocross, a speed bike stunt show, and ATV races.
When: April 8, 5:30 pm -10 pm
Where: Olympic Stadium
Bixi season begins April 15th and we couldn’t be more excited. Given the mild winter we’ve been having, it’s about time our favourite bike sharing program is brought back to the streets of Montreal. Even better, Manulife and the city of Montreal have a few Bixi-related surprises up their sleeve in honour of the city’s 375th anniversary. In addition to annual free Bixi days, there will be specially designed Bixi Bikes rolled out in May adorned with drawings from local artists representing the city’s anniversary.
When: April 15
Where: Various locations
You can play the hottest new recreational game right here in Montreal. Known as Archery Tag (or Arc Tag for short), Combat d’Archers is the place to spend a Saturday afternoon in Montreal. This new, hybrid sport is a mix of paintball and archery. It sees players running around a room of over 10,000 square feet, using airsoft weapons to tag their opponents. Each session is one hour in length, excluding 20 minutes of training which is required before every game.
When: Monday to Friday 12 pm-11 pm, Saturday and Sunday 9 am-11 pm
Where: 3955 Rue de Rouen
Starting January 28th, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts will open a brand new special exhibition on world-renowned painter, Marc Chagall. The exhibit, titled “Chagall: Colour and Music,” explores the importance of music in Chagall’s life. It will be multidisciplinary, featuring over 400 works ranging from sculptures and paintings to photographs and films. In addition, puppets, costumes, stained glass windows, maquettes, and gouaches will be on display. According to the official site, “Music was a constant source of inspiration” for the Russian-French artist. “A favourite subject for his creations, it served as an internal rhythm and driving force for his compositions, and a key to the intensity and range of colour in his work.”
When: January 28-June 11, 2017
Where: Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
The Montreal Botanical Garden’s annual “Butterflies Go Free” exhibit is back for another year. Taking over the Main Exhibition Greenhouse from February 23rd until April 30th, 2017, visitors can step into a humid tropical oasis that will make you forget all about winter. As you take in the fragrant flowers and diverse greenery, hundreds of stunning butterflies will fly around you. Feel them as they lightly brush your arm mid-air or examine them up close while perched on a flower.
When: February 23-April 30, 2017
Where: The Montreal Botanical Garden
Montreal is hosting yet another exciting art festival this film, the International Festival of Films on Art. The 2017 theme of the festival is Play & Distraction, and will explore the connection between fun and human nature. A unique festival that recognizes the films created on art and media arts, the International Festival of Films on Art (or FIFA) seeks to promote the work of artists, increase knowledge of this art among the public, and encourage the film community to produce more films based on art. 2017 marks the 35th year of the event and in the past, over 200 films have been shown from over 25 countries around the world. The festival has even toured other cities, including New York, London, Brussels, Boston, Helsinki, and Paris.
When: March 23-April 2, 2017
Where: Various locations
One of Griffintown’s trendiest restaurants, Le Richmond, has just announced that they will be hosting a special sugar shack-themed brunch for the three weekends only. Trading their typical Italian cuisine for maple syrup-covered goodness, this unique brunch will consist of green pea soup, burrata, thousand leaf cake, a porchetta salad, vol-au-vent, smoked bacon, braised pork cheek, braised beef ribs, strata, beans, and bone marrow potato puree. Dessert options also include the likes of a maple crepe, a candied apple, and caramelized pecans with pancetta and vanilla mascarpone. The specialty brunch service costs a flat fee of $45 per person, and there are only two weekends left to get a taste of a sugar shack without leaving the city!
When: March 25 and 26, April 1 and 2
Where: 377 Ave Richmond
The McCord Museum has announced a temporary exhibition on fashion from the Expo 67 era. The exhibit, titled Fashioning Expo 67, explores the “effervescence of Montreal’s fashion moment.” Over 60 outfits will make up the exhibition, ranging from hostess uniforms to paper dresses, all of which have been created by Quebec designers. Further, Fashioning Expo 67 will feature accessories like hats, gloves, umbrellas, purses, and jewellry, as well as drawings, photographs, documents, and film footage of the fashion at Expo 67.
When: March 17 – October 1
Where: McCord Museum, 690 Sherbrooke St W
Defy gravity and scale a building like Spiderman courtesy of Old Port’s ultra fun adventure, Decalade. The Decalade challenge is happening at the Conveyer Key Tower in Old Port right now! Participants can choose from a variety of challenges, from the 1-hour “dizzying trip”, to the 3-hour “controlled vertical descent facing the ground like Mission Impossible.” This activity is sure to get your blood pumping as you put yourself in the shoes of all the action hero greats. Sessions are by appointment only and range from $89.99 to $149.00. You can also pay $39.99 for a panoramic selfie as you descend from the roof.
When: By appointment only
Where: Conveyer Key Tower