About the Ottawa Regional Heritage Fair (ORHF)
The Ottawa Regional Heritage Fair (ORHF) is a bilingual non-profit organization dedicated to the history education of Canada’s young people. The fair is run entirely by volunteers. The ORHF works in partnership with educators, its partners, and volunteers, and with historical and heritage communities to host a bilingual fair that brings together youth from across the Ottawa Region. The fair engages students from three school boards across the Ottawa area, indigenous communities, and homeschoolers in the exploration of their local, regional, and national history, heritage, and culture.
Experienced, Dedicated & Successful
The ORHF is an educational initiative that encourages students from grades four to ten to explore an aspect of Canadian history and heritage in a dynamic and captivating learning environment. Teachers can use the Fair program to help meet their curriculum objectives.
Participation in the fair develops critical thinking and engages citizenship skills. As young people develop stronger roots in their communities, they will have the confidence to become active citizens who shape the future of Canada. This program connects the classroom with Canada’s history but also with the community – to valuable organizations such as historical societies, museums, archives, libraries, and multicultural groups. Teachers are encouraged to hold classroom and /or school fairs and then bring a selection of their best projects to the Ottawa Regional Heritage Fair
The Ottawa Regional Heritage Fair aims to provide a bilingual, educational program that encourages students to explore an aspect of Canadian history and heritage in a dynamic and captivating learning environment.
Our Core Values
The Ottawa Regional Heritage Fair engages students from three school boards across the Ottawa area, indigenous communities and home-schooled children in the exploration of their local, regional and national history, heritage and culture. On an annual basis, the ORHF hosts a one day bilingual exhibition showcasing history and heritage themed projects researched by students from grades 4-10. Students use the medium of their choice to share their learning about Canadian heroes and legends, milestones and achievements. The projects are adjudicated by volunteer judges and student excellence is recognized through a variety of community–based awards. This celebration which can involve up to 300 students, also includes cultural entertainment and educational workshops.
Since its creation, the Ottawa Regional Fair Committee has developed a strategic partnership with the Ottawa museum community, notably with the Canadian Museum of History and the Canadian War Museum. These two national museums serve as the venues for the Fair exhibition at which students display their projects in a public venue, participate in educational workshops and visit these important national institutions. It is through self-generated revenue and private support from historical, cultural, and business sectors that the ORHF is able to continue to support students.
The Fair is organized by a volunteer committee comprised of members of the museum and heritage communities, retired educators and professionals who are passionate about heritage and advocates students to develop their knowledge and appreciation of Canada’s history. The committee is supported by a fundraising sub-committee. The committee’s role is to develop a fundraising strategy to obtain sponsors and to identify successful fundraising activities that would help to support the ORHF and the Ottawa students’ participation at the Ontario Provincial Fair. The Ontario Provincial Heritage Fair is a celebration of Ontario and Canadian Heritage. At the showcase, students share the many fascinating stories of their families, communities, province and country with their peers, special guests and the public. Student representatives from the Ottawa Regional Heritage Fair participate at the Ontario Provincial Heritage Fair in the Summer. Students have the opportunity to explore Canada’s history with their peers through an array of educational group activities offered by the Ontario Provincial Heritage Fair program. Students also have the opportunity to share their winning history research projects in a public exhibition. The City of Ottawa contributes pins for the Ottawa student representatives to proudly wear and to trade with their peers.