Canada Day is a national holiday that is celebrated annually on July 1 and over the entire weekend. This year’s celebration is a special one – it marks Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation. Let us look into the origins of this holiday and how it is celebrated in Victoria, British Columbia.
Canada Day History
The history of Canada Day goes back to July 1, 1867, when three provinces – Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the Canada province – were joined by the Constitution Act. The Canada province later split into two: Ontario and Quebec. In 1879 the holiday called Dominion Day was established to celebrate the new country. At first it was not popular among Canadians because they still considered themselves British citizens. The complete independence from England happened only in 1982.
In 1967, one hundred years after the Constitution Act went into the effect, Canada saw the growth of national spirit and patriotism. A bill was introduced to rename Dominion Day, and finally in October of 1982 the holiday was renamed to Canada Day.
Canada Day is now one of the biggest holidays in the country and is being celebrated on a long weekend with free events, parades, outdoors concerts and fireworks. Additionally, the Canadian government has made the entrance to all national parks in Canada free of charge to all citizens and tourists alike in 2017. No wonder Lonely Planet has named Canada the best country to visit in 2017!
Canada Day in Victoria, BC
To commemorate Canada’s 150th birthday, the city of Victoria is hosting 11 days of free outdoor events in the Inner Harbour. They started on June 21th and will culminate on July 1st on the Main Stage near British Columbia Legislature Lawns. There will be a fireworks show at night. During these days over 100 live bands and singers will perform free of charge.
The Harbour Stage at Ship Point is also hosting various national celebrations and theme days, including National Aboriginal Day, La Celebration de la Francophonie, Canadian Multiculturalism Day, Youth Day, Folk Roots Day, and others.
The full list of events happening around the city can be found here. We wish you a happy Canada Day and hope you have a fantastic long weekend!