Family Day Activities: What’s Happening In Barrie & Area

Family Day event at the Barrie Community Sports Complex

With no shortage of things to do on Family Day, your only problem will be narrowing down your options. Barrie and the surrounding areas have all kinds of activities happening this weekend in celebration of Family day and many of them are free!

Outdoor Family Day Activities In Barrie And Area

Barrie and surrounding areas have plenty of events and activities planned to keep you busy this Family Day (Monday, February 20, 2023). Here’s what you need to know:

Barrie’s Family Day Winter Adventure

The City of Barrie is hosting a Family Day event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Barrie Community Sports Complex (2100 Nursery Road, Midhurst). The event offers FREE outdoor activities including:

  • Axe throwing (ages 10+)
  • Skating
  • Broomball
  • Horse-drawn sleigh rides
  • Tobogganing (bring your own sled)
  • Kicksledding
  • Snowshoeing

When you’re ready to take a break from the cold, warm up by the bonfire or make some crafts.

Nature In Winter Pop-Up

From February 17 to February 20 you can head over to Sunnidale Park for the Nature In Winter Pop-Up. While there, you can learn about the natural world during winter with a self-guided tour. The tour features QR-coded videos and information provided by the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority. You’ll find the QR codes displayed around the playground area and along the path to the feeder.

You can also join in on the Great Backyard Bird Count at our designated feeder station. On-site instructions will guide you on how to participate. The feeder can be found on the path behind the Dorian Parker Centre, right on the edge of the forest.

Free Paintball At Barrie Paintball

Get out and try something new this Family Day. Barrie Paintball is offering a day of free paintball on February 20 from 11 AM to 5 PM. All you have to pay for is the paint, which is on sale for $120/case of 2000 (normally $160)! Entry, equipment, and HPA will be free.

Come early to avoid the wait. No equipment reservations are allowed on Family Day.

Family Day At Simcoe County Museum

This Family Day, come and explore the 300+ acres of the Simcoe County Museum. Take a journey down the 1 km skating trail, snowshoe through the forest, or zoom down the toboggan hill. Or enjoy one of the many indoor and outdoor activities that are sure to delight the entire family, including delicious treats!

Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for youth and seniors, and $5 for children. Preschoolers and Museum Members are free.

All the activities for the day are included with your event admission. Please bring your own skates, helmets, skate assists, and toboggans. Snowshoe rentals are available for free.

Free Fishing

There are only 4 times a year you can fish in Ontario without a license and this weekend is one of them. Enjoy fishing all weekend long without having to go get a permit to do so.

But remember, you still need to follow a few rules including:

  • Conservation licence catch limits
  • Size limits and sanctuaries
  • Fishing regulations

If you need equipment, take advantage of the TackleShare program through the Barrie Public Library or other loaner sites.

Skate Escape At Friday Harbour

The Skate Escape at Friday Harbour will be open on Family Day. Activities include ice skating in the Piazza, live entertainment, and the Harbour Skate Trail (pay-to-use). Once you’re ready to warm up, you can head to the chalet cabins for some treat or enjoy a cup of hot chocolate and handcrafted cocktails in the warming lounges.

Snowman Mania

What started as a snow-building competition years ago, is now a full-blown winter festival with activities for the whole family.

From February 17 to 20, Wasaga Beach will be hosting Snowman Mania. Each day will be filled with tons of events and activities including:

  • Fire spinning performances
  • Fireworks
  • An inflatable maze
  • Kicksledding
  • Axe throwing
  • Hot chocolate in an igloo
  • The Snowman Mania Illumination Trail
  • Horse and carriage rides
  • Indoor games
  • Toolbox building and crafts
  • Magic shows
  • Pancake breakfast
  • And more …

Hot Cocoa Trail

Warm up before your day of family fun with delicious hot chocolate from February 18 to 19.

The Downtown Hot Cocoa Trail will be running for just two more weekends until the end of the month. There are over 25 participating locations with unique takes on hot chocolate and delicious treats.

As an added bonus, every purchase of hot chocolate at any of the participating locations will include the chance to win a $250 Downtown Barrie prize pack!

Family Day Fun At Horseshoe Valley

Horseshoe Valley is celebrating Family Day all weekend long. Enjoy glow tubing and a live DJ on February 18. Families will get a free glow stick with a tubing pass between 6 PM to 9 PM.

From February 17 to 19, you can also go on a moonlit snowshoe adventure. The one-hour tour includes snowshoe rentals, headlamps, and hot beverages around the fire. The tour leaves at 7 PM and 8 PM from the Alpine Rental Centre at the Main Chalet.

Cap the weekend off with Family Day Live On The DJ Deck with Andrew Hutt on Monday, February 20 from 12 PM to 7 PM.

Indoor Family Day Activities In Barrie

If you’re looking for indoor fun, we’ve got you covered …

Barrie Rec Centres

All three recreation centres (Allendale Rec Centre, East Bayfield Rec Centre and Peggy Hill Team Community Centre) will offer a variety of drop-in activities from 6 AM to 9 PM on Family Day. Activities include:

  • Fitness classes
  • Open swim
  • Family Day swim
  • Aquafit
  • Stick & Puck
  • Hockey
  • Public skate
  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Pickleball
  • And more …

To view the schedule, visit

MacLaren Art Centre

This Family Day, MacLaren Art Centre is hosting a Celebration of Diversity. The first event will take place at MacLaren from 10 AM to 1 PM. Here, families will be able to explore the current exhibitions, as well as enjoy a printmaking class with Kim Brett. Using monotype, stamping, and collagraph printing you will create unique family portraits.

A second event will be held at Shak’s World Community Centre from 12 PM to 3:30 PM. Families will participate in a creative painting and embroidery project followed by live entertainment.

RELATED: Support Shak’s World by grabbing a pink shirt and wearing it February 22 …

Services In Barrie That Will Be Affected By Family Day

  • Barrie Transit will operate according to the regular Sunday service schedule. Visit for details.
  • Curbside Collection: There will be no garbage, organics, or recycling collection on Family Day in Barrie. Collection during the week of this holiday will occur ONE day later for the remainder of the week. Visit for details.
  • City Hall will be closed.
  • Parking: Downtown parking (on-street and lots) is free on all statutory holidays. Waterfront parking is enforced 24/7/365; residents must display their permits and visitors are required to pay $10/hour (daily maximum: $50). Visit for details.

RELATED: What’s open and closed on Family Day