Ottawa is anything but boring, and An Insider’s Guide to Canada’s Capital is the proof. Produced by a group of about 30 millennials led by multimedia co. Wingd‘s Zainab Muse, the book highlights the people, places and organizations that make the city an exciting, diverse and Instagram-worthy place to visit and live. Take a peek at the book trailer and tell me you don’t want to see more.
The book has two parts. The first includes snapshots of must-see landmarks, monuments and vistas for first-time visitors, as well as key events, activities and adventures to enjoy through the seasons. In the second part, Ottawa newcomers and long-time residents share what brought them to the city and what made them stay.
Stand-outs for me:
- Ottawa Cooks author Anne Desbrisay’s essay, “The Capital’s Culinary Evolution” and the stunning food photography that follows
- The nature photography showing the best of Ottawa’s parks and waterways (which actually makes me want to get outside and explore, and I’m not outdoorsy in the least)
- Narratives from a culturally diverse cross-section of young people creating communities and organizations for positive change (Nabil Imani, founder of the Young and Awesome social group which helps raise funds for charitable organizations in addition to hosting fun, community-run events; Jamie Koebel, founder of Indigenous Walks, which offers tours of downtown Ottawa from an Indigenous perspective)
- Learning more about some of my favourite Ottawa bloggers, including Katie Hession of YOW City Style and Chantal Sarkisan of ModeXLusive, both talented Toronto transplants whose love for Ottawa is infectious (well Katie is originally from Ottawa but lived in Toronto for years)
- Profiles of unique small business owners and creative types (Jessica Vermette and Jenna Hutcheson of the Ottawa Makers Market; Saveeta Sharma, founder of the Upasana (The Spirit of Dance) dance school; Allan André, painter and art teacher)
- Omnipresent Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson’s witty foreword (“I’ve been known to attend several community events, and proclaim as many days are there are stars in the sky … Some people even joke that I show up at the opening of an envelope.”)
(Zainab Muse, lead, An Insider’s Guide to Canada’s Capital)
I’ve lived in Ottawa for 25 years and I feel like I’m just getting to know the city, especially after reading this book. An Insider’s Guide to Canada’s Capital has plenty of the familiar sights, yes, but so many hidden gems as well. Pick up a copy and explore the city from the comfort of your couch, then get outside and discover it for real.
And just in time for Canada Day, I’ve got a copy of the book to give away! (Thanks to Zainab and the Wingd team.) To enter to win a copy of An Insider’s Guide to Canada’s Capital, tell me one of your favourite things about Ottawa (whether it’s a particular place, person, way of living, whatever!) or something in Ottawa you’d like to see or do. Tell me your answer in the comments below (this entry is mandatory).
For an additional entry, follow try small things on Facebook and share this post, then tell me you did so and your name on Facebook in the comments below.
For a third entry, follow try small things on Instagram, and tell me your Instagram handle in the comments below.
And feel free to tweet the following once per day and leave the url for your tweet in the comments below (one entry per tweet). Make sure you’re following try small things on Twitter for your entry to count.
#Win “An Insider’s Guide to Canada’s Capital” from @trysmallthings & see Ottawa like never before http://wp.me/p4xBed-5nz CAN #Ottawa2017
The giveaway is open to Canadian residents 18+ and ends at 11:59 p.m. EST on July 17, 2017. The potential winner (chosen at random) must respond to prize notification within 48 hours and provide the correct answer to a skill-testing question, otherwise another will be selected.
Good luck everybody!
Update July 18: Congratulations Marla P!
Wingd gave me a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.