Never-to-be-Forgotten Experience


“I am very sure that the majority of our 21st century visitors who take that wonderful Journey Behind the Falls leave feeling they have also had an awe-inspiring, never-to-be-forgotten experience. Happy 125th to the Journey Behind the Falls,” said Official Niagara Parks Historian Sherman Zavitz.

Mr. Zavitz took guests back in time with his presentation celebrating the 125th Anniversary of Journey Behind the Falls during the last Niagara Parks Commission meeting.

“For just a very few minutes let me take you back to 1889 – 125 years ago. Sir John A. Macdonald was the Prime Minister of Canada that year. The country had a population of about 4.5 million and seven provinces. The Niagara Parks Commission, as we now know it, was just four years old and Queen Victoria Park had been open for only one year.”

“Niagara Parks opened a new and, in fact its first, attraction: a 150-foot-long tunnel behind the Horseshoe Falls. An observation portal was created to allow visitors a spectacular view of the massive curtain of falling water. ”

After touching on other historic events, Mr. Zavitz shared the following quotes from local media in 1889. This is how they described Journey Behind the Falls:

“I am persuaded that there is no more sublime or awe-inspiring scene to be witnessed elsewhere on the planet.”

“To watch those floods pouring past the rocks just in the mouth of the tunnel is to receive such an impression of awe and of the sublime aspect of the falls, as can never be forgotten – it is an experience for life.”

What a wonderful endorsement!

Celebrations Continue

During the month-long celebration that started August 1st, JBF-cake-cutting-cherylNiagara Parks has engaged visitors from around the world sharing 31 Stories over social media channels. On Friday, August 22, a free “birthday cake” event was held at Table Rock for visitors and invited guests. The celebration continues until the 31st of August, so come and experience the fun for yourself!

Your Journey awaits you!


Teenager Brooke Henderson Wins on Battlefield


It has been quite a season for 16-year old Smith Falls, Ontario native Brooke Henderson. In June she followed up her low amateur finish at the U.S Women’s Open at Pinehurst (T-10) by winning the $60,000 Canadian Women’s Tour stop on the Battlefield course at Legends on the Niagara. The world’s number two ranked women’s amateur followed up her opening round 69 with a six under par 66 winning the tournament five shots ahead of runner-up Stephanie Connelly of the United Sates. The victory came in impressive fashion with 6 final round birdies and no bogeys earning her a birth in the CP Women’s Open August 18 to 24 in London. Had Henderson been a professional, she would have earned $10,000 for her win at Legends, $90,861 US for placing 10th at the U.S. Open and another $19,257 US for finishing 26th at the Kraft Nabisco Championship earlier in the year. In the meantime, Henderson became the youngest ever winner of the PGA of Canada Women’s Championship with a two-day total of 13 under par setting a 36-hole scoring record and made it to the 36-hole finals at the U.S. Women’s Amateur only to lose in the closing holes to 16-year old Kristen Gillman of Austin, Texas. [Source: Bernie Puchalski, Sports Editor, St. Catharines Standard]

Canadian Golf History Made at Legends

Golfer Austin James with trophyWith his final putt on the Battlefield course at Legends on the Niagara, 18-year old Austin James made Canadian golf history. The Bath, Ontario native not only won the Canadian Junior Boys Golf Championship by four strokes with a 15 under par total in the 72-hole championship, he joined his sister, Augusta James, the 2014 Canadian Ladies Amateur Champion to become the first siblings in Canadian golf history to win a national championship in the same year.

“We had joked around that it could happen if I played well and I’m happy it happened,” said James. “She had a really impressive win at the Canadian Ladies so I was really proud of her and it gave me even more confidence going into this week knowing it’s possible.”

During a week that saw the course record on Battlefield broken three times with 64s in the first and second rounds of play, it was 16 year-old Tony Gil of Vaughan, Ontario who went one-shot better with a 63 in the third round to break a course record that had stood since Meg Mallon carded a pair of 65s at the 2004 LPGA Canadian Open.

“Although we didn’t get the wind that we normally get, I was very surprised that the scores were so low,” Legends head professional Curtis Labelle said. “And even with prime conditions, we never envisioned anyone shooting eight or nine under par. What makes it even more amazing is that the greens were lighting fast running 11 to 12 on the Stimpmeter and the course was playing at more than 7,100 yards. That’s really long and they weren’t getting much roll,” Labelle said.

Played since 1938 and open to boys who have not yet reached their 19th birthday, the Canadian Junior has been won by Canadian Golf Hall of Fame members George Knudson and Gary Cowan, a two-time US Amateur Champion, making it one of the great proving grounds in Canadian golf. [Source: Bernie Puchalski, Sports Editor, St. Catharines Standard]

Little Legends can Play for FreeMan and boy with golf clubs

Until the end of August junior golfers can practice and play the Chippawa course at Legends for free when accompanied by an adult who buys one round or a bucket of balls on the 360-degree Legends practice range. To encourage beginners and less experienced players, Chippawa has also added 8-inch cups to the greens, almost double the size of traditional holes, offering a choice of which hole to play.

Tournament Gifts that Keep on Giving

While a lot of tournaments are judged by the quality of their prize table, it’s important to remember that first impressions really do count. Golfers will remember the arrival gifts that you give them long after your tournament is over. We are not talking about “trinkets and trash”. The most important thing is to give golfers practical gifts that they will use and display. Giving gifts can help to promote your event to golfers who did not attend and serves as an additional reminder for next year. Sponsors will also pay for arrival gifts with their logo on the gift in order to increase their exposure, savings that could add to your bottom-line or charitable proceeds.

Review your tournament budget to choose appropriate gifts and make sure that it has the name and date of the tournament. A popular gift in recent years has been a framed work of golf art which could be a photograph of the signature hole at the course you’re playing. A framed picture is always a nice fit on an office wall and something that your sponsors and guests will all be proud to display. A displayable gift gives your event even more exposure. Sponsors will view their gifts and think about your event long after the event day and potential news sponsors who see the item hanging on the wall may inquire about next year’s event.

For more information about tournament planning and gift ideas contact Rick Janes, Manager of Golf Business Development for the Niagara Parks Commission at 1-866-465-3642, Extension. 220 or

One Stop Shopping for Tournament Organizers and Event Planners

Hornblower boat in water

With 54 holes of championship golf designed by three of the top golf course architects in Canadian history, planning a visit to Niagara Falls offers so much to experience and it’s all at your fingertips. When you book your golf event with Niagara Parks whether it’s part of an annual conference, charity event or monthly sales meeting you have access to a staff of expert event planners. These planners can handle everything from meeting space and ground transportation to an intimate VIP dinner or a banquet for 200 at Elements restaurant overlooking Niagara Falls. As part of the Niagara Parks Commission, our event planners have access to a host of services and attractions that might just make your event in Niagara the best it has ever been.

There is more to your Niagara Parks golf experience than just golf. Founded in 1885, the Niagara Parks Commission is an entirely self-financed agency of the Government of Ontario and every dollar earned by the Commission goes back into preserving the natural beauty of Niagara Falls and the Niagara River corridor as public green space and environmental heritage. With more than 6 square miles of parkland along the Niagara River and another 35 miles of roadway along the Niagara Parkway between Fort Erie and Niagara on the Lake, The Niagara Parks Commission manages numerous trails, historic sites, high-end restaurants and attractions including the exciting new Hornblower catamaran cruises, White Water Walk at the edge of the world’s wildest stretch of rapids and the 125-year-old tunnels behind the crashing waters of Journey Behind the Falls. Niagara Parks also hosts Canada’s longest running fireworks series directly over the Falls all of which makes Niagara Falls one of the major tourist attractions and best golf destinations in the world.

Who Said That?

“The older I get the better I used to be.”
Lee Trevino

Journey Behind the Falls turns 125


Happy 125th Birthday!

For 125 years over 50 million people have experienced the awe-inspiring spectacle that is Journey Behind the Falls. It has captivated its visitors throughout time with its rich history and awesome power. Over one-fifth of the world’s fresh water crashes 13 storeys to the basin below. During summer daylight hours, over 2,800 cubic meters of water thunders over the brink every second, traveling 65 kilometers per hour.


In 1889, Niagara Parks undertook the construction of the first tunnels behind the Falls, for the attraction the Sheet of Falling Water, where lantern-carrying guides brought visitors up-close and personal with the massive cataract. Over time as the brink of the Falls receded, tunnel extensions were required, until 1944 when a new tunnel was constructed, some 18 metres (59 ft.) behind the original passageway. These new concrete-lined, lit tunnels are still in use today. In 1951, an observation plaza was added and in 1990, the heavy rubber raincoats and boots previously provided to visitors were discontinued. These were replaced by light, biodegradable yellow rain ponchos which can now be kept as a souvenir. Learn more history by visiting


It’s time to celebrate the 125th Anniversary of the Journey Behind the Falls attraction with a month-long celebration highlighting the popular attraction and its importance to Niagara Parks and visitors from throughout the globe.

As part of celebratory plans for the month of AUGUST you can enjoy:
• an enhanced interpretive program running every 30 mins, that will share more of the Journey’s unique history
• each hour the 125th visitor to Journey Behind the Falls will win “VIP treatment” and be ushered to the front of the line with a gift from Pop & Lolly’s Candy Shop.
• 31 stories – one each day – about the attraction at, through Facebook and Twitter(@NiagaraParks), to engage visitors and encourage them to share their stories, thoughts and images about this popular attraction.
• On Friday, August 22, a free “birthday cake” event will be held at Table Rock for visitors and invited guests.
• Followed that evening by a special illumination of the Falls in yellow, coinciding with Falls Fireworks taking place at 10:00 p.m., to recognize this significant moment in Niagara Parks history.

Visit Journey

We invite you to share this exciting event by visiting the Journey Behind the Falls attraction, following us on social media, and sharing your unique stories with us.