News, restaurants, events – discover what's happening in your city every weekday morning


This is the 100th edition of the ottawan. Maybe it is time that we introduced ourselves.

We're Martha  and Darren. 

Martha was born and raised in Ottawa. She has worked in marketing the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors, Aberdeen Football Club, and for the UK Trade & Investment.

Darren published the alternative weekly Terminal City, co-founded the magazine for and by homeless persons, Megaphone, and co-founded the music festival Music Waste, all  in Vancouver. Later, in London, he worked in financial journalism, helping to expose the shenanigans on the London Stock Exchange.

We moved to Ottawa last autumn and had this fantastic idea: let's start a daily newsletter about what's going on in the news, in the restaurants, and the events because we'll be experiencing it all through fresh eyes. And maybe other people would be interested in reading that, too. 

Our planned start date: April 1. No fooling.

With no restaurants open, all events cancelling, and politics at a standstill, we launched anyway. One hundred editions later, and hundreds of subscribers later, we know that we're on to something.

However, we have two things that we'd like to ask of you, dear reader:

1️⃣ Fill out this quick survey about us. It's only eight questions and nothing personal. We really just want to know if we're on the right track.

2️⃣ If you are not subscribing just to hate-read us, please share the ottawan with a friend 

And thank you for continuing to read the ottawan.

We'll see you tomorrow – Martha and Darren


Today we're checking out just a few of Ottawa's virtual festivals.

🎼 The pandemic didn’t stop the Music and Beyond Festival, which turned 11 years old this summer. Instead of its usual run of concerts, organizers turned to high production value videos, which were released over 12 days in July. The festival’s mandate is to broaden classical music audiences by combining music with other art forms and cultural activities. It also sees to provide accessible opportunities for young people to engage with arts and culture in the community. 

The 2020 festival was presented in video via three themes: Music and Nature, Music and Law, and Music and Circus. The videos are available to view on the Music and Beyond’s French and English YouTube channels. [YouTube]

📝 The Ottawa International Writers Festival is online this year, with live readings and events, pre-recorded interviews, and a new podcast. Coming up this Sunday, August 23 at 2:00pm is a pre-recoreded interview of Billy-Ray Belcourt, the writer and academic from the Driftpile Cree Nation and the youngest ever recipient of the Griffin Poetry Prize. Belcourt will discuss his novel A History of My Brief Body, with Ottawa-based poet Ellan Chang-Richardson. [Writer's Festival]

🎨 The House of PainT outdoor Hip Hop Festival isn’t happening as it would have outside the pandemic. Instead, as we previously reported, you can utilize their street art map and take walking tours with a focus on graffiti and murals. [House of Pain]

🏳️‍🌈 There’s lots to see at the virtual Ottawa Pride Festival, running from Sunday August 23 to Sunday August 30. This year’s theme is “Wherever we are” and includes a pageant, a virtual community market, a youth art showcase, a drive in drag show, a talent show, vigils, discussions, and more. [Capital Pride]

🇬🇷 Like so many events during the pandemic, rather than cancel outright the Ottawa Greek Fest pivoted to a virtual experience. The final weekend of Greek Fest at Home runs August 21 - 23 from 4pm to 8pm. Food can be purchased with debit and credit payments at the Hellenic Meeting and Reception Centre, 1315 Prince of Wales Drive, and virtual activities include Zorba shows and cooking demos. There’s some online shopping as well. [Ottawa Greek Fest]


Weather: ⛈️ 30% chance of showers. High of 26°. Dropping to 8° tonight!

Number: 7. The number of tickets issued to people riding their e-scooters on the sidewalk. The fine is $180.  [Ottawa Matters]

Ottawan of the Day:  Osmel Maynes, the new executive director of Capital Pride. Capital Pride will run virtually Aug 23 - 30 [Ottawa Citizen] [Capital Pride]

Quote: You can do anything for a little while. But peoples’ resilience is beginning to wane – Jennifer Lalonde, executive director of Ottawa West Community Support and chair of the Champlain Community Support Network, who says unpaid caregivers are in distress.  [Ottawa Citizen]

Sports: CPL: (Winnipeg) Valour FC trash Athlético Ottawa 4-Nil


For up-to-date info, view the Ottawa Public Health COVID-19 dashboard

 There have been 2746 confirmed cases of COVID‌-19, an increase of 18 since yesterday, and 265 deaths in Ottawa, an increase of one since yesterday.

⭕ Dr Vera Etches of Ottawa Public Health says that she Hallowe‘en trick or treaters will find other ways to have fun rather than go house-to-house [CFRA]

⭕ A ninth resident of the Carling Family Shelter has tested positive. The person is a relative on someone who was already positive.  [CFRA]

🍁 The Canada COVID Alert App

Be alerted if you have come in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 

📲 How It Works  [Apple App Store] [Google Play App Store]

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▪️The Rideau Transit Group has invoiced $60 million to the City but only received $5 million. The City has withheld the rest until the Group fixes all the problems with the light rapid transit line. Even now, the full complement of 15 trains does not regularly run during peak times.  [CBC]

+ Related Memo from the City about payments and maintenance And let us plug the wonderful O-Train Fans website. Everything O-Train. By a fan.

▪️Federal Government plans to use regulations to help CERB recipients. CERB has ended for most people, and since Parliament is now prorogued until September 23, no new legislation can be passed. However, the Government can use EI regulations to change eligibility and duration for that programme without asking Parliament. [Financial Post]

▪️The inflation rate in Ottawa has dropped to 0.9% in July from 1.2% in June. [Ottawa Business Journal]


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