For Ontario Parks’ 125th anniversary celebrations, singer-songwriter David Archibald embarked on a 31-park concert tour.
The concert tour is named after one of five new songs David Archibald wrote specifically for the anniversary. Ontario’s Happiest Camper Tour.
David’s five new songs celebrate the rich natural and cultural heritage of Ontario parks and Canadian camping culture.
From June to September, David Archibald sang throughout the province, performing for more than 3,500 park visitors.
Often leaving audiences with a song they can’t get out of their heads, David’s concerts are joyful, interactive and engaging.
Living the time of dreams
One of David’s new songs is “Living the Dream Time (More Green Time Less Screen Time).” This catchy song was written to celebrate the 125th anniversary theme: Healthy Parks Healthy People.
The song encourages people to get outside to experience the positive benefits of spending time in nature.
Reflections from the concert
Here’s what some concertgoers had to say in David’s online guestbook:
“We enjoyed your concert tonight at Pinery Provincial Park! I’m looking forward to learning the new songs! —Bev
“A great evening of entertainment tonight with my daughters at MacGregor Point. Thank you for visiting us to share your love of music and your joy of life. Thank you also for signing a CD for my nephew’s birthday. I hope to see you soon”. -Blair
“Our entire family enjoyed watching your performance at Algonquin Park this week…” – Mandryk Family
A concert tour to remember
Ontario Parks spoke with David Archibald after his tour of the province to see if he was still the happiest camper in Ontario.
This is what he had to say:
“I just received a note from a camping parent. The subject line read: “We’re all going camping tonight” (a song written for OP125). ‘David, I saw you in Killbear. My children have not stopped singing this song. Where can I get it to play around the campfire?’
“Well, that’s the kind of response you like to receive after an extraordinary summer traversing this vast and wonderful province. However, this was no ordinary road trip. I had the privilege of performing in 31 provincial parks, from Rushing River in the northwest, to Rondeau in the southwest and Charleston Lake in the east.
“It was a summer of ospreys, eagles, flickers and bobcats. A summer of swimming and sweating (not in that order). A summer sleeping in the sand, sleeping on granite, sleeping under Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars… wait a minute, that sounds like a lot of sleeping! Mostly, for me, it was a summer of music, singing songs about parks in parks, in beautiful outdoor amphitheaters, in picnic shelters in the rain, on the bare, ancient rocks of the Canadian Shield.
“In addition to the wildlife, I will also remember the human connections and growing diversity of the camping population, whether it was rain-soaked geologists in Kakabeka or hordes of War of 1812 reenactors at Wasaga Beach.
“It was great to see old friends and family who have been camping and coming to my concerts for years. They know all the lyrics to songs like ‘Five Great Lakes’ and ‘The Poison Ivy Song’. It was also a pleasure to meet so many families new to camping and spend “a little more green time and a little less screen time.”
“So, it’s autumn now. I miss the wind, the waves and the lonely sounds of loons and trains in the distance. I am so grateful to Ontario Parks for making this adventure possible. Until next time!”
If you can’t get enough of David’s new songs, you can find them on his website!
A huge thank you to David Archibald for an incredible concert tour and to everyone who came to enjoy his concerts this summer!