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September 30, 2017

Celebrate our history | Visit our cultural treasures

Doors Open Oshawa gives the public a chance to explore the historical architecture and fascinating sites found throughout the city. Spend a day discovering local history first-hand during our 14th year. Held in conjunction with Culture Days, honouring many community milestones and in celebration of Canada's 150th, our theme this year is Our Identity.

Come see what makes Oshawa unique!

Not only are we celebrating Canada's 150th, but also:

Simcoe Street United Church’s 200th anniversary
Parkwood Estate’s 100th anniversary
Oshawa Historical Society’s 60th anniversary
Ontario Philharmonic’s 60th anniversary
Robert McLaughlin Gallery’s 50th anniversary
Durham College’s 50th anniversary

Visit www.oshawa.ca/volunteer for more information on how to become a Doors Open Oshawa volunteer.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

61 Charles Street

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
61 Charles Street
Oshawa, Ontario
Year built: 1903
Building type: Commercial
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Built in 1903 by the T. Eaton Company Limited, 61 Charles Street expanded in the 1920s and manufactured for the automotive industry. For nearly 50 years afterwards, it was the home of Alger Press Ltd. The building now provides classrooms, student services, a library and much more as part of the University of Ontario Institute of Technology.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Self-guided tours available

Arts Resource Centre

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
45 Queen Street
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-436-3311, ext. 5654
Year built: 1952
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This building initially served as the Oshawa Police Station and Courthouse. In 1973, the holding cells were transformed into artists’ studios, the courtroom into a theatre and the building renamed. Also part of Culture Days, join them for Art @ the ARC and a pottery display, and view the Durham College window vinyls in celebration of community milestones.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Ontario 150

Canadian Automotive Museum

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
99 Simcoe Street South
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-576-1222
Year built: 1920
Building type: Museum
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Established in 1963 and housed in a 1920s car dealership, this museum showcases the development of the automobile, with approximately 76 vehicles dating from 1902 to 1988 as well as other historical items. The building also has its original freight elevator. During Doors Open, visit the gift shop, enjoy family crafts or go on a guided tour.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Kid-friendly
Guided tours available

Canadian Victory Garden

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
200 Winchester Road West
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-442-2167
Landscape type: Garden
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Located on two hectares (six acres) of a historical farm property, the Canadian Victory Garden is an education centre. Tours will showcase an operational urban farm, solar-equipped greenhouse, beehive, pollinator gardens and earth systems for low energy as well as demonstrations of ham radio.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Guided tours available

Cowan House

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
39 Athol Street West
Oshawa, Ontario
Year built: c. 1858
Style: Georgian
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Cowan House, built circa 1858, is a Georgian-style dwelling with Italianate features, including the bracketed eaves and portico elements. It was home to businessman and mayor W.F. Cowan and his family. Today, it serves as offices and meeting rooms for St. George's Memorial Church.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly

Gordon Willey Building, Durham College

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
2000 Simcoe Street North
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-721-2000
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Join Durham College in Rooms C150, C152 and C154 of the Gordon Willey Building for a digital Escape Room with a Camp X theme! Be the first to try out this newly designed adventure. Use teamwork, logic and intuition to solve a series of puzzles, find clues and escape the room. Limit: thirty-minute sessions for groups of six.

Parking
Guided tours available

Intrepid Park, Camp X

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
Boundary Road just south of Wentworth Street West
Oshawa, Ontario
Year built: 1941
Architect: Canadian Corps of Engineers
Landscape type: Landscape
Saturday: 10:30 a.m. walking tour of the site and 1:30 p.m. lecture at the Regent Theatre

Meet author Lynn Phillip Hodgson at Intrepid Park’s monument for a guided tour of Camp X, the former top-secret Second World War spy training school. Explore the remains of the camp, strategically located beside Lake Ontario. Over 500 special agents were trained here to go behind enemy lines and “set Europe ablaze!” as dramatized in CBC Television’s X Company.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available

Islamic Centre of Oshawa

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
23 Lloyd Street
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 289-200-6070
Year built: 2012
Architect: Array International Architects
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This first mosque built in Oshawa is reminiscent of the Ottoman Empire. Ornamental crescent moons enhance both the main prayer hall dome and the dome atop the minaret. Guided tours and free refreshments are available. A display highlights Islamic history. Please respect any dress code.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Guided tours available

McLaughlin Bandshell

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
110 Simcoe Street South
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-436-3311
Year built: 1942
Building type: Theatre
Saturday: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A gift from R.S. McLaughlin to the City of Oshawa in 1942, the bandshell is celebrating 75 years in 2017! The Oshawa Civic Band will perform at 11 a.m., Noon and 1 p.m. Guided tours will be offered at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. Set in Memorial Park, there is also a cenotaph containing stones of allied nations.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Guided tours available
Ontario 150

Ontario Regiment Museum

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
1000 Stevenson Road North (Airport South Field)
Oshawa, Ontario
Building type: Attraction, Military, Museum
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Ontario Regiment Museum is home to Canada’s largest collection of operational historical military vehicles. Vehicle demonstrations will take place throughout the day. It also houses a large collection of artifacts that details the rich military history of Oshawa, Whitby and Durham Region.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Ontario 150

Oshawa City Hall

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
50 Centre Street South
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-436-3311
Year built: 1952
Architect: Hanks & Irwin Architects (original); Pentland, Baker & Polson Architects (civic square, 1967); Barry Bryant & Associates (renovations, 2009-10)
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Oshawa City Hall originally stood at the corner of Simcoe and Richmond streets; it was rebuilt in its current location in 1952. In 2009-10, the building underwent renovations, including the demolition and reconstruction of the Council Chamber. This year, the Council Chamber will be open for guided tours.

Parking
Washrooms
Guided tours available

Oshawa Masonic Centre

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
91 Centre Street South
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-433-1911
Year built: 1928
Architect: C.C. Stenhouse
Style: Art deco
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Constructed in the art deco style and shrouded in symbolism, this building is now home to four lodges and two concordant bodies. Doors Open is a unique opportunity to learn more about Masonic imagery and to view the Lodge Room, as well as the anteroom, hall and library.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Self-guided tours available

Oshawa Public Libraries - McLaughlin Branch

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
65 Bagot Street
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-579-6111
Year built: 1954
Architect: Arthur E. Eadie
Style: Prairie
Building type: Library
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; 10 a.m. lecture (Identity, Industrialization and Technology in Oshawa) by Amanda Robinson, doctoral candidate at York University and Chair of Heritage Oshawa

R.S. McLaughlin officially opened the library, his gift to the city, in 1954. The architect studied under John M. Lyle, who designed Parkwood’s formal gardens. Lyle's influence on Eadie is seen at Union Cemetery in the McLaughlin Mausoleum, while the library uses vocabulary from Frank Lloyd Wright's Prairie style.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly

Oshawa Sports Hall of Fame

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
99 Athol Street East
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-245-0360
Year built: 2007
Building type: Attraction, Museum
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This museum, located on the first floor of the Tribute Communities Centre, honours those who have achieved a high level as players, teams and builders of sport in the city. Caricatures of each inductee are found on the walls. Numerous artifacts and photographs will be on display, depicting the sport history of Oshawa – from hockey heroes to Kentucky Derby winners.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
National Historic Site (Canada)
Kid-friendly
Ontario 150

Parkwood Estate Gardens

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
270 Simcoe Street North
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-433-4311
Year built: 1915
Architect: Darling and Pearson, H.B. and L.A. Dunington-Grubb, and John Lyle
Landscape type: Garden
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

In the 1920s, H.B. and L.A. Dunington-Grubb, founders of Sheridan Gardens, created spectacular outdoor garden rooms, including the Italian Garden, Sundial Garden and Summer House. In 1935-36, John Lyle created the Formal Garden. Doors Open will showcase the remaining greenhouses, which are being restored, and The Lodge, the former home of Parkwood’s head gardener. Come and tour this 12-acre garden.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Self-guided tours available

Pine Ridge Model Train Club

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
32 Wilson Road North
Oshawa, Ontario
Building type: Attraction
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Pine Ridge Model Railroaders began in 1969 when a group of General Motors workers, retired railroad employees and other interested individuals started the Oshawa Model Railroad Club. Despite a few name changes, the club continues to attract people with an interest in model trains. Explore many aspects of culture – architecture, landscape design, art and transportation – all in miniature!

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms

Regent Theatre

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
44-52 King Street East
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-721-3399
Year built: 1919
Architect: John McNee Jeffrey
Style: Georgian
Building type: Theatre
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Camp X lecture at 1:30 p.m.

The Regent Theatre was designated in 2001. Its façade, built in 1919 for Famous Players theatres, has Georgian architectural lines. One of the town’s few remaining examples of this classically inspired style, the building reopened in 2010 as a lecture theatre for the University of Ontario Institute of Technology, as well as for community and cultural events.

Parking
Full wheelchair access
Washrooms
Kid-friendly
Ontario 150

Robert McLaughlin Gallery, The

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
72 Queen Street
Oshawa, Ontario
Telephone: 905-576-3000
Year built: 1969; Erickson addition 1987
Architect: Arthur Erickson
Building type: Museum
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Celebrating 50 years! This gallery, the largest in Durham Region, occupies a building designed by well-known Canadian architect Arthur Erickson, who flooded the lobby with natural light via skylights in the soaring ceilings. Enjoy the permanent collection, juried art exhibition, historical photos, distinctive gift shop and artist-led, hands-on activities for all ages.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms

St. George's Memorial Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
51 Centre Street South
Oshawa, Ontario
Year built: 1924
Architect: Eden Smith; parish hall designed by Forsey Page & Steele
Style: Gothic revival
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

St. George's opened in 1924, the same year that Oshawa became a city. Designer Eden Smith considered this Gothic revival-style church, constructed of Credit Valley sandstone, his finest work. The buttresses and Gothic tracery are noteworthy, and the tower supports a 15-bell carillon. Drop in for a chiming concert at noon and organ concert at 1:30 p.m.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Guided tours available
Ontario 150

Simcoe Street United Church

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
66 Simcoe Street South
Oshawa, Ontario
Year built: 1867-68
Architect: Gundy & Langley
Style: Gothic revival
Building type: Place of worship
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

In 2017, the Simcoe Street United congregation celebrates 200 years! Built in the year of Confederation for a Methodist congregation, this church is a fine example of the Gothic revival style. Lancet-arched openings and a polygonal spire with pinnacles and dormers embellish the exterior. A pressed-tin ceiling, 11-metre (36-feet) high ornamental timber arches and a Casavant organ dominate the interior.

Parking
Partial wheelchair access
Washrooms
Guided tours available
Ontario 150

Union Cemetery

CONTACT INFO ARCHITECTURE DATES/HOURS OPEN
760 King Street West
Oshawa, Ontario
Year built: 1837
Building type: Cemetery
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Join Oshawa Museum staff for 30-minute tours of this historical cemetery, and learn about the personalities who contributed to Oshawa’s and Canada’s growth. The site, which covers 11 hectares (29 acres), includes private mausoleums and a Gothic-revival chapel. The mausoleum was built in 1924 and features an ornate marble interior and hand-painted stained-glass windows.