4 Ways To Celebrate Canada Day

On July 1st, we toast Confederation by painting the town red and white. Here are some ideas for how to mark this occasion, whether you’re hitting the road or hanging out in your backyard.

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Parliament Hill in Ottawa, OntarioPhoto: Shutterstock

1. Celebrate Canada Day at the Capital

Ottawa's Canada Day bash kicks off at 9 a.m. with a flag raising on Parliament Hill, followed by a changing-of-the-guard ceremony. At midday, the Snowbirds stage a flyby. The day ends with a CanCon concert and fireworks spectacle in front of the Peace Tower. Bonus: national museums offer a variety of gratis activities.

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Father and son celebrating on Canada DayPhoto: David P. Lewis/Shutterstock

2. Celebrate Canada Day locally

Most cities and towns organize free Canada Day activities. Check in newspapers and online for public parades and events at community centres, libraries and Legion halls. For a unique reminder of what it means to be Canadian, attend special citizenship ceremonies hosted by groups across the country.

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Friends having a backyard barbecuePhoto: Shutterstock

3. Have a Canada Day BBQ

Invite friends over for a backyard cookout. Pass around only-in-Canada snacks like ketchup- and dill pickle-flavoured chips and national delicacies like poutine, butter tarts and Nanaimo bars. Young (and young-at-heart) guests will enjoy showing their true patriot colours: paint your face red and white to salute the maple-leaf flag, our symbol since 1965.

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Friends having fun at house partyPhoto: Shutterstock

4. Plan a Canada Day games marathon

Rally your neighbours to participate in a thematic scavenger hunt. Spot a maple tree, Tim Hortons cup, hockey stick, canoe...the list goes on. Bonus round: the English version of "O Canada," written by Robert Stanley Weir in 1908, actually has four verses. Challenge your friends to see who can recite all the words.

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