Who are we?
Lake of Bays Arts (LOBarts) is a volunteer-led group. Collectively, our backgrounds and passions include the visual and theatre arts, photography, filmmaking and culinary arts.
Originally, Mayor Terry Glover invited us as individuals to join a cultural round table to discuss the advancement of the arts and culture in the Township of Lake of Bays. While LOBarts continues to enjoy a strong relationship with the Township, we are a separate organization. LOBarts is grateful for seed money from the Township to develop this website.
LOBarts mission is to:
- promote the arts and culture as the heart of the Township of Lake of Bays
- advocate for artists
- connect community members and visitors to local artists and cultural events
- collaborate with local artists, restaurants and hospitality businesses to enhance community prosperity and quality of life.
LOBarts’ first project was to develop the Arts Loop website to connect and centralize arts-related information in Lake of Bays. We hope you enjoy getting to know our thriving arts community.
We connect visitors to the arts and culture in Lake of Bays
Our interactive Arts Loop map and calendar allow visitors to easily plan an arts-centric trip to Lake of Bays to:
- meet and support artists in their studios
- visit galleries and museums
- check out live theatre and concert venues
- take pleasure in first-class eateries
- enjoy our stunning landscapes along the way
Visitors can “stay in the loop” about upcoming events and festivals by subscribing to our Newsletter and checking our social media pages.
Lake of Bays’ significance in Canadian art history
The Group of Seven, also sometimes known as the Algonquin School, was a group of Canadian landscape painters collectively working from 1920 to 1933. Although Tom Thomson died on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park before its official formation, he had a significant influence on the Group of Seven and introduced them to our area.
Believing that a distinct Canadian art could be developed through direct contact with nature, the Group of Seven is best known for its paintings inspired by the Canadian landscape, and they initiated the first major Canadian national art movement. The first! No other area in the entirety of Canada can make this claim.
We can stand tall on this firm bedrock to celebrate and promote the many, many artists, artisans, musicians and restauranteurs who currently work, create and continue to be inspired by this place we call home.
In 2018, photographer and LOBarts volunteer Rob Stimpson, was instrumental in getting part of Highway 60 renamed Tom Thomson Parkway. This in itself was a major step in acknowledging our area’s significant place in Canadian art history.
Where is the Township of Lake of Bays?
We are located right next to Algonquin Park in North Eastern Muskoka, Ontario, Canada. We are 2 hours North of Toronto and 3.5 hours West of Ottawa.
The Township is home to four picturesque hamlets (Baysville, Dorset, Dwight and Hillside) where the people are friendly and annual festivals and special events are held throughout the year.
Come discover this remarkable place where nature provides the essence of inspiration, and the people who live and work here create the community, art and food to feed your spirit.