Today is an important day in Canadian history: the official birthday of Canada, and we can’t wait to celebrate! Canada Day honors the anniversary of July 1, 1867, when the provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the Province of Canada were joined for the first time as a united and autonomous country within the British Empire. In 1982, the name was changed from “Dominion Day” to “Canada Day,” which it’s officially known as today.
This holiday is a huge celebration for Canadians—much like July 4th in the U.S.—and is observed as both a statutory and government holiday. “The day usually consists of barbecues, booze and plenty of fireworks!” says Catherine, a Tour Consultant in our Toronto office. “A lot of people also head up north to cottage country and their lake houses to enjoy the outdoors and spend time with family and friends.”
Towns and cities throughout Canada also host their own celebrations and events to commemorate the day. In Toronto, the annual Ribfest happens over Canada Day weekend and signifies the start of the Canadian summer. “It’s a fair-like event with rides and concerts, but also features a rib grilling competition with contestants from Canada and the U.S.!” says Chris, a Tour Consultant.
“Everywhere you go people celebrate it a little differently,” explains Kelsey, a fellow Canadian Tour Consultant. “In the smaller towns outside the big cities, you will always find Canada Day parades or carnivals. For example, my hometown of Russell, Ontario starts the day with a community pancake breakfast and then holds events such as jello-eating contests and tug of war battles throughout the day until the big firework celebration that night.”
How will you be celebrating Canada Day this year? Tell us about it in the comments below.