Join us for the 16th annual Telling Tales Festival at the Royal Botanical Gardens. We are excited to share a full schedule of over 40 of Canada’s leading children’s authors, illustrators, and storytellers presenting on five vibrant stages! Come to the festival for:

  • Free access to the Royal Botanical Gardens! Register for the opportunity to see these amazing gardens at no cost.
  • Book Swap! Bring your old books and trade them in for new-to-you stories. 
  • Author Signings! Meet your favorite authors in person!
  • Wandering Characters! Did you know that the Paper Bag Princess comes to Telling Tales every year? Meet her and your other favorite storybook characters as they come to life!
  • Performers! Catch musicians, puppet shows, and drag queen storytime, all at Telling Tales!
  • Interactive walks and activities! Join RBG ambassadors on guided story walks, play games at our vendor tents, or sing a song with our musicians.
  • Local artisans and vendors! Visit our Exhibitor Grove to peruse local talent and support local artists.

Two Days of Festival Fun

Telling Tales believes in creating meaningful connections with the natural world. Finding the “awe” in nature—like discovering a story that speaks to you—can encourage creativity and emotional growth. 

Telling Tales’ partnership with Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG) provides the perfect opportunity to connect children and their families with stories, nature, and art. 

Join Canada’s finest children’s authors & illustrators, along with local artists, performers, and RBG Ambassadors who will lead families in story readings, sculpture walks, creative workshops, music, and more! 


Visit our stage pages for details and presentations (coming soon!)

Main Stage: All ages

Read Together Tent: Ages 0-6

Early Reader Tent: Ages 6-8

PreteenTween Tent: Ages 9-12

Young Adult Tent: Ages 13+

View our full season schedule for a complete listing of presentation times (coming soon!)

We gratefully acknowledge the Hamilton Public Library, Rotary Clubs of Burlington and Hamilton, Royal Botanical Gardens, Dan Lawrie International Sculpture Collection, Ontario Arts Council, the Government of Ontario, Canada Council of the Arts, the Government of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Community Services Recovery Fund, City of Hamilton, EarlyON Child and Family Centres, City of Burlington, Hamilton Community Foundation, Turkstra Family Foundation, Patrick J. McNally Foundation, Jennifer Turkstra, and The Michael Young Foundation for helping to bring these talented Canadian artists to our community. Full list of supporters.

Telling Tales is a well-run festival that brings large numbers of participants together to enjoy a day of exceptional programming. As an author, I have been impressed by the level of organization of the event. As a former teacher and a literacy advocate, I highly recommend this festival as a way to deepen the community’s connection to texts and to learn from artists and storytellers.
-Aimee Reid, Author & Festival Presenter

“I think it is the perfect event to take a child. My daughter was so happy, doing the walking trail and reading and getting videos too. She was super eager to fill a backpack with books. As soon as we got home, we looked at everything she picked up. We have special books that were signed by the author which will be kept as a memory for years to come.”
-Festival Attendee, 2022

 “…holy moly did the gang at Telling Tales rise to the challenge! They offered the same amazing list of creators, and pulled it together in a unique and satisfying package. -best kids festival in Canada, if not the world.
-Kevin Sylvester, CBC Broadcaster, bestselling Children’s author and illustrator. 2020.

It’s amazing that an event like this can be free! I am grateful to all the sponsors. Having an easy way to tap a donation was also a good idea.

Thanks to all the volunteers who made this excellent event happen.”
Janet J. Festival Attendee, 2022