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(2014 - Spring/Summer Issue)


I just parked my car in downtown Moncton, New Brunswick. The main drag and several side streets are decked out with hundreds of cars ranging from street rods to muscle cars, special interest vehicles and antique autos.

Within sight are guys in suits, teens and bikers with tattoos, a crowd of giggling girlfriends, parents with toddlers in tow, and plenty of seniors. They’re typical of the thousands of people who visit the Atlantic Nationals in Moncton—an annual automotive extravaganza showcasing upwards of 2,000 cars of every make, brand and colour. Glancing around, I notice everyone’s wearing a perpetual grin—including me.

Following Friday’s main street display and evening street dance, everything moves to Centennial Park for two days of car exhibitions, seminars, demos, music and more.

The amazing thing is this entire event is organized and managed by volunteers, with profits going back into the community. In fact, that’s how Centennial Park (featuring an automotive-themed “Splash Park” for kids) was created in the first place.

This is what I love about Moncton. Although it’s a thriving Maritime metropolis, it still maintains that down-home feel. It’s no surprise Moncton was designated Canada’s most polite and honest city (Readers Digest, 2008) and that hasn’t changed.

Diverse Attractions and Activities

You’ll want to spend time at the Magnetic Hill Zoo. This year a new big cats exhibit features Amur tigers and an Amur leopard. The moment you walk into the exhibit, you are “transported” to a Russian train station to view the big cats in their natural environment. While visiting the zoo, you can enjoy petting stations, an award-wining Ecodome, and daily feeding times of the primates, lions and otters.

Moncton’s newest attraction is Resurgo Place. Its architecture alone has a wow factor that ranks 10 out of 10. Featuring a new Transportation Discovery Centre, as well as the Moncton Museum, Resurgo Place includes everything from new galleries to an education centre, gift shop, research centre and fun programming related to the history of Moncton and its transportation heritage.

Soccer fans will want to plan their vacation in Moncton around the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014 games from August 6–20. That’s another thing I love about this city—it hosts world-class sports, theatre, music and everything in between.

Let me quickly tuck in two more “must-do,” “must-see” places: TreeGO’s diverse aerial adventures will make your heart pound and Artisan Village is a one-of-a-kind concept in Atlantic Canada.

Travel Planner

Several carriers offer daily service to the Greater Moncton International Airport from major centres in North America. Maritime Bus (maritimebus.com)provides service from major centres in the Maritimes while VIA Rail (viarail.ca) connects east down to Halifax and west to Québec City and Montréal.

For more information, visit:

Tourism Moncton: tourism.moncton.ca

Artisan Village: artisanvillage.ca

Atlantic Nationals: atlanticnationals.com

FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014: FIFA.com/Canada2014

Magnetic Hill Zoo: moncton.ca/zoo

TreeGO: treegomoncton.com

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