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Burlington and its people sure know how to have fun, even 150 years ago!

Dating back to the 19th century, early settlers of Burlington knew how to relax and enjoy themselves through Arts & Entertainment. Large estates, such as the Ireland House, would throw lavish parties and host formal events like strawberry socials for members of the community. The Ireland family was one of Burlington’s most prominent pioneer families. The Ireland House today is a living museum where people can experience what life was like on a 19th century farm.

The Brant House Hotel and the Brant Inn made the Burlington lakeshore the biggest resort area in the county. Recreational activities at the resorts during this time were boating, swimming, playing croquet and riding horses to name a few. Aside from the outdoor recreational activities one could participate in, the Brant Inn offered live music from some of the best musical acts of the period and boasted a large outdoor dance floor to jive to the tunes.

Burlington’s history of art can be directly traced back to Delos Cline Bell, who was a famous portrait artist that lived in Upper Canada in the early 19th century. Delos is best known for his three portraits of Sir John A. MacDonald, which at one point were showcased at the Royal Ontario Museum.

Burlington has had a strong tradition in Sports & Recreation that dates back to the time of First Nations people who played lacrosse. In the 1900s lawn bowling became Burlington’s sport of choice. Lawn bowling remains a popular past time for many in today’s Burlington. As Burlington’s City Council recognized the needs of its community members for more sporting and recreational facilities, it approved the construction of buildings and bought land to build hockey rinks, baseball and soccer fields.

Today, one of the more famous marathon events in the country is held in the Hamilton-Burlington area. The Around-the-Bay Race is the earliest and longest running footrace in North America.

Displaying Entries 1 to 7 of 7

arts.jpg Arts & Entertainment Burlington’s art and entertainment history dates back to the beginning of 19th century. The Brant House Hotel and the Brant Inn made the Burlington lakeshore the biggest resort area in the county.
emma.jpg Estaminet, Emma's Backporch This property originally belonged to Andrew Gage. It is believed that the Estaminet Hotel was adapted from Andrew Gage's home, making it one of Burlington's oldest buildings. The restaurant initially opened with a mere four tables, it quickly grew into a bustling enterprise and continues to operate as a restaurant.
brant1.jpg First Use of Burlington Place Names The term Plains of Burlington was first used on the map of the Upper Road from the Humber, which was part of Simcoe’s military highway, Dundas Street, in 1796. The Plains of Burlington had a military purpose as a flat, open area of engagement for the British Army.
lawnb.jpg Sport & Recreation Burlington’s sport and recreation history dates back to the late 18th century when early settlers combined recreational opportunities with their daily activities. At the turn of the century, the people of Burlington began to play sports and participate in clubs during leisure time. Known as a hard-working community, Burlington’s people also knew how to have fun!
taylor.jpg The Betty Taylor House Built in 1938 on former Brant's Block lands, the Betty Taylor House was constructed for Taylor following her retirement from a career as an Olympian and hurdles competitor. The house is one of two in Burlington constructed in the Art Deco Style and is situated in the Hart Survey, registered in 1922.
cottage2.jpg The Charles Chisholm Summer Cottage Built in 1886 for George Chisolm. One of the early summer cottages that was built in Burlington’s early ‘summer resort’ area of Old Burlington. The house is a typical one-storey and a half vernacular building with a three bay front elevation and a centre gable above an arched window. The house fits well with the other homes on the historic Nelson Avenue.
music.jpg The Sound of Music Burlington has a lasting legacy of music. From our celebrated Burlington Teen Tour band to popular music groups like Walk off the Earth and Finger Eleven, Burlington has a long tradition celebrating and nurturing our love for music.