Insider Itineraries: Diana Gore

By Kingston Accommodation Partners

Diana Gore is a communications and arts professional that has been living in Kingston since 2006. A graduate of Queen’s University and the University of Toronto, Diana has spent the past few years in Kingston working and volunteering her time with organizations like the Kingston Association of Museums and Art Galleries, Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre, Museum of Health Care, Union Gallery and Agnes Etherington Art Centre. Diana is currently the Programming and Communications Coordinator at the Kingston Arts Council.

Read on to see her top 10 favourite things in Kingston!

Skeleton Park Arts Festival

June 19-23, 2019

Skeleton Park Arts Festival has a special place in my heart! It’s probably one of the first arts events in Kingston that I attended that made me feel like I could make Kingston my home. I think in the past eight years, I’ve only missed the festival once. I live in the neighbourhood and I’ve been involved as a volunteer for years now, and I have so much admiration for the SPAF team and all that they bring to Kingston. For me, the festival marks the official start of summer and it’s guaranteed to be a weekend filled with great music and friends. This year, I’m particularly excited to see Witch Prophet and Rueben DeGroot and Rocket Surgery perform.

Big Sandy Bay, Wolfe Island

I like that we have a quiet, lovely beach close to the city. I don’t drive, so I love that I can make a day trip out of it and take my bike out to the island and make my way to a beach that’s not overly crowded.

Memorial Centre Farmers Market

303 York Street

I feel grateful to have a market in my neighbourhood and I’ve been really thrilled to see it grow over the past few years. It’s my favourite place to grab lunch on a summer Sunday afternoon with friends. Main Street Market is essential for keeping me caffeinated, the Ukrainian food stand for giving me a place to buy cabbage rolls and The Kitchen Garden for glorious local produce.

Northside Espresso + Kitchen

281 Princess Street
Northside combines three of my favourite things: great coffee, brunch and plants, so I knew it had to make it into my ‘top 10 things’ I love about Kingston list. It’s one of my favourite places for brunch and I can never say no to a ‘magic.’ They really won me over with the gorgeous, plant-filled space and friendly staff.

Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning

370 King Street West
It’s hard to think of a time when the Tett wasn’t an active arts hub in Kingston. I’m happy to work and live in a city that values culture and invests into its artist community. I work for the Kingston Arts Council, and our offices are at the Tett Centre, so I’ve been able to experience first hand the programming that’s delivered and the energy of the tenants that are in there daily. This spring, there’s a stellar exhibition at Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre that features a large-scale installation by Kingston-based artist Joan Scaglione.

The Screening Room

120 Princess Street (second floor)
We are so lucky to have an independent movie theatre downtown! The Screening Room plays host to local film festivals like the Kingston Canadian Film Festival and Reelout and it’s rewarding to have a place where you can go see interesting films. The Screening Room underwent extensive renovations to make the space physically accessible, which in turn earned them a well-deserved City of Kingston Celebrating Accessibility Award. Wendy Huot, the owner of The Screening Room is a pillar of the cultural community and an absolute inspiration!

Belle Island

Belle Island is one of my favourite places to go for a walk. Just north of downtown, it provides a little green space for us city folk.

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Evening stroll.

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Midsummer Celebration by Calliope Collective

Calliope Collective is a group of dedicated artists and creators that stage events around midsummer and winter solstice in Kingston. I love the joyful gatherings they’ve been creating and the care that goes into planning a multi-disciplinary, collaborative event. This year’s event is slated for June 20th at Doug Fluhrer Park.

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Meet Champion 2: Shane Baleish. Wielding his flaming sword for the purpose of good (and sometimes evil), Shane Baelish has been wowing audiences with the manipulation of fire for over a decade. As part of the nationally recognized performance troupe Illuminair, he has entertained thousands with his stage-work and playfulness at events such as Toronto's Cavalcade of Lights, and New Brunswick's Buskers in the Bay. At this stage of his career the only thing at risk is the length of his beard. . . . #thelongestnightygk #calliopecollective #fire #firespinning #flowarts #wintersolstice #meetthefrost #communityart #puppets #theatre #publicart #placemaking #ygkarts #ontarioartscouncil #giantpuppets #oak #holly #kings #motherearth #fire #balance #winter #longerdays #ygk

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The Agnes Etherington Art Centre

36 University Avenue
For me, the Agnes is an anchor institution in our community. In addition to hosting interesting exhibitions, it’s also been instrumental in my development as an arts professional. The Agnes has so many assets: a vast historical collection, contemporary works of art by Canadian and international artists, learning spaces and passionate staff. This summer, they are have a strong roster of exhibitions on display. ‘Any Saint’ by artist and Queen’s Film & Media professor Emily Pelstring is a standout for me. If I could hang out in that exhibition space daily, I would!

Live Music at 12 CAT Arts Collective

12 CAT Arts Collective has been putting on shows in the NGB Studio space for the past couple of years. They are a group of local musicians and artists that are committed to offering space to other local musicians, as well as out-of-town touring bands. I’ve seen some great shows there and the venue (while not without its challenges), is pretty special.

Describe Kingston in 3 words: Charming, Friendly, Creative

If Kingston had a theme song, what would be it be? PS I Love You, For Those Who Stay

Complete the sentence: Kingston makes me: feel like I’m part of a community.

Cover photo credit: Liz Cooper