No summer in the Yukon can be complete without the yearly Canada Day events. The very mention of Canada Day can conjure up memories and build anticipation for just about any Yukoner. Like any other year, 2018 is promising the fun Yukoners have come to expect from the national holiday. Following last year’s gigantic Canada 150 celebration may be a tough task, but with summer finally here, Yukoners are looking to get out under the sun, at last, and add another Canada Day to their collection. With a holiday that never disappoints, why should this year be any different?
As per usual, a host of special events and celebrations put on by the Whitehorse Legion will be taking place on Canada Day. In addition to being an occasion for festivities, the Whitehorse Legion’s second vice president, Red Grossinger, says Canada Day marks a time to consider what it means to be Canadian.
“Canada Day is a day to reflect on what Canada is, for each of us,” said Grossinger. “A day to be proud of what Canada has achieved in the past and what we are as a nation.”
With a heavy focus on entertainment in the events of Canada Day, emphasis will be placed on showcasing local talent. In a place with a multicultural and diverse population, showing off local talent can mean presenting a wide array of forms of artistry.
“We are lucky, here in the Yukon, to have so many talented people,” Grossinger said. “We could hold a show for three days without an artist performing twice, because of our large number of performers.”
The Canada Day concert in Shipyards Park continuously attracts fans of live music and entertainment, throughout the day, to see a span of acts, with something for everyone bound to be present. In the past, local solo artists, bands and dance groups have all taken part in the all-day spectacle, which runs from 1 p.m. all the way until 9 p.m. and is produced by Claire Ness.
As well as the entertainment aspects of the holiday, several other events will be happening over the course of the day. The Canada Day celebrations in Whitehorse will start off with a pancake breakfast hosted by the Knights of Columbus, at Shipyards Park, from 9 to 11 a.m.
Following the breakfast, the annual parade will start at 11 a.m. One hour earlier, the parade will start forming up on Main Street between 4th and 6th Avenue. The parade runs from 4th Avenue and Main Street, to Shipyards Park via 2nd Avenue and Ogilvie Street. It will feature the Whitehorse Legion Colour Party and the music of the Midnight Sun Pipe Band.
At noon, the official opening ceremony by the honourable Angelique Bernard, Commissioner of Yukon, will take place. This will feature the raising of the Canadian flag and the singing of “O Canada,” as well as the cutting of the official Canada Day cake by the commissioner.
At 1 p.m., a beer garden operated by the Whitehorse Legion will open and remain open until 9 p.m. At 3 p.m. the Rotary Club Great Canadian Yukon River Duck Race will start, and many more activities will be available throughout the afternoon, including a food truck court at Shipyards Park; displays by various local community volunteer organizations; a firemen skill competition for kids, presented by the Whitehorse Fire Department; a BYTE skateboard competition at Second Heaven Skate Park (registration at 11:30 a.m.); and non-stop children’s and youth activities, such as a new bouncy castle for younger kids.
Canada Day this year is an occasion no Yukoner should miss. There are activities and events to satisfy all and to remind each person what being Canadian means.
“When we follow the news and see what is happening to our southern friends, we should be proud to say we are Canadian and we do things in a Canadian way,” Grossinger concludes.
For more information check out the Whitehorse Legion’s website, www.whitehorselegionbranch254.ca.