Happy pending 150th birthday, Canada.
Time to party
By John Cosway,
It will be 76 trombones and a big parade of proud Canadians
when Canada begins its 150th year at the stroke of midnight on
New Year's Eve.
While Canada doesn't officially mark its 150th birthday until
July 1, the Canadian government says the national party will
begin at midnight Dec. 31 with a fireworks display on Parliament
Hill befitting the celebration of the birth of Confederation
New Year's Eve celebrations will also be held in 18 other
urban locations across Canada: St. John's, Halifax, Charlottetown,
Moncton, Fredericton, Quebec, Montreal, Toronto (Nathan Phillips
Square), Iqaluit, Winnipeg, Regina, Saskatoon, Yellowknife, Edmonton,
Calgary, Whitehorse. Vancouver and Victoria.
No, we won't have the glitz of Expo '67, a six-month world
event that attracted more than 50 million people to Man and His
World in Montreal to mark Canada's 100th birthday in 1967. But
hamlets, villages, towns, cities, provinces and the federal government
have been planning events for months.
Not all is going
smoothly. The official Canada 150 logo, created by Ariana Cuvin,
a 19-year-old University of Waterloo student who pocketed $5,000
for the winning design contest entry, has been criticized by
professional designers, who were excluded from the contest.
The federal government restricted the contest to students.
Cuvin, who beat out 300 other entrants, told reporters her diamonds
and colours do not represent anything in particular.
"I just wanted to go with something very simple,"
she told the Ottawa Citizen.
A national website called 150*Alliance is hosting Canada's
largest database of sesquicentennial projects and celebrations
on every level across the country. Organizing an event? Register
the event and your organization at 150alliance.ca
Communities across Ontario have set up websites to guide
residents and tourists to events throughout 2017, including:
The provincial government's Canada 150 website is up at ontario.ca/page/ontario150
but a spokesperson told the Wayback Times, "At Ontario 150,
we have yet to roll out all of our plans so I would ask that
you check back in the new year to get updated information."
As for July 1, plan on a coast-to-coast celebration marking
the 150th anniversary of the day the first four provinces were
signed into Confederation - Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and
It is interesting to note The Weather Network says July 1,
1867, for Sir John A. Macdonald and his fellow fathers of Confederation,
was apparently "perfect weather-wise."
David Phillips, a senior climatologist at Environment Canada,
was quoted as saying: "It was described as being warm, sunny
and cloudless with a slight breeze. In what was Canada back then,
you couldn't have had a finer day."
It was a fine day, indeed - the start of a long and harmonious
friendship headed by Macdonald at the helm as Canada's first
Canada continued to grow in the next century or so, with
Manitoba and the Northwest Territories joining in 1870, British
Columbia in 1871, Prince Edward Island in 1873, Yukon Territory
in 1898, Alberta and Saskatchewan in 1905, Newfoundland and Labrador
in 1949 and Nunavut in 1999.
Beginning Jan. 1, we will all be invited to a multitude of
sesquicentennial events coast to coast.
The federal government says the Canada 150 main themes include
diversity and inclusion, reconciliation with Indigenous peoples,
youth and environment.
And what would an anniversary be without a special coin set
from the mint? It is called the 2017 Special Edition Pure Silver
Proof Set - Canada 150, Our Home and Native Land. The little
set with a big name is selling for $229.95.