Canada Day is here! A day to celebrate Canadian history, culture and achievements as well as reflect on our past. And there are many activities and events in communities across the country including concerts, parades and fireworks.
The celebration was originally known as Dominion Day, a public holiday to commemorate the 1867 formation of the Dominion of Canada. In 1982, it was officially changed to Canada Day. Celebrations throughout the country, organized by the government, started in 1958 and continue to this day.
Canada Day continues to get bigger and bigger. By the 1980s, the capital had started supporting, in addition to the Parliament Celebrations, smaller festivities across Canada, including fireworks in major areas of the country. Now everyone could get in on the fun!
The celebrations happen on July 1st every year. If this happens on a weekend, then the following Monday becomes a statutory holiday. On the West Coast, Vancouver holds one of the biggest celebrations with 13 hours of family-friendly live performances, activities, exhibits, food and one of the country’s most famed fireworks displays. Regina even has a strongman competition for all of Western Canada for the occasion! Ottawa (the capital city) holds the largest celebration right at Parliament Hill and the surrounding downtown consists of concerts, vendors, shows done by the Canadian Armed Forces Snowbirds and CF-18s and the National Arts Centre Orchestra, as well as many more activities. The East Coast celebrates, of course, with its strong musical traditions and many events on or near the water. And, of course, it all ends with spectacular fireworks displays across the country. For those who prefer less crowded celebrations, there are fairs and events in smaller Canadian cities, towns and communities as well.
Find out what’s happening in your area by looking at your city’s website. Thinking of going somewhere else to celebrate? Visit this page for ideas: https://www.canada.ca/en/canadian-heritage/campaigns/celebrate-canada-day.html. There’s something for everyone!
Prepared by: Kristy-Lu Desrosiers, JSS Facilitator, Ontario