The World is a Stage

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Canada is 150 years old and it is time to celebrate!

Fortunately we do have some groups around town that are making the effort to show how wonderful Canada is and how blessed we are to live here. Take the time to get involved to celebrate whenever you have the opportunity and don’t be afraid to wear that Confederation outfit you have at the various festivities. There are not many anniversaries where you have a chance to dress up and be proud of your heritage.

Did you realize we are one of the few countries in the world never to have had a civil war? We are the second largest country in the world, yet 38th in terms of population! There were 35,362,905 in 2016!

Every Canadian, even our First Nations, originally immigrated from somewhere else, so don’t be shy, learn of the style of dress your relatives wore when they immigrated here or would have worn in 1867. Now is the time to prove to each other and the world that we are unique. We are the sum of our immigrants, but no matter from whence we came we are now first proudly Canadian!

One of the events you might like to invite your friends and dress up for is a "Confederation Tea" at St. John’s Anglican Church specifically celebrating Canada's 150th birthday. The Outreach Committee invites you to celebrate Wednesday, June 14 with tea, sandwiches and goodies with a Canadian flavour. They will be serving from 12 noon until 2:30 p.m. Tickets at the door $10 (46 Ridout St W).

You will find that some of the Tillsonburg and District Historical Society Pioneers will be at this tea, so you will not be alone in dressing up!

There is a great camp coming up for your children or grandchildren to attend where they will learn all about our wonderful nation from coast to coast. "Oh Canada! Summer Camp" at Annandale NHS is just the ticket. Week 1 - July 10-14 - The Territories. Build your very own Inuksuk and pan for gold. Week 2 - July 17-21 - Maritimes. Connect with your inner Viking and learn about our Fathers of Confederation. Week 3 - July 24-28 - Ontario. Have fun with wet and wild activities and create your very own miniature hockey rink. Week 4 - July 31-August 4 - Quebec. Participate in a winter carnival with Bonhomme. Week 5 - August 8-11 - Prairies (short week due to holiday). Explore Canada’s dinosaurs and learn about our first settlers. Week 6 - August 14th-18 - British Columbia and Alberta. Learn to paint like Emily Carr and also create your own Ukranian egg.

Children ages 5-9 are invited to join us for six weeks of camp during the celebration of Canada’s 150th birthday! Sign up for one day, one week or all six weeks! $20 a day from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Additional children within the family receive a 10 per cent discount. Annandale NHS at 30 Tillson Avenue Tillsonburg, call (519) 842-2294.

Better grab your calendars to mark down some other big events that you could proudly show your heritage. Turtlefest is Tillsonburg’s biggest celebration this year. Although not an official 150th event, the Pioneers will be out to strut their 1867 garb and stories. June 16 marks the beginning of the party with a complimentary Ribfest celebration at Memorial Park starting at 11 a.m. The Block Party downtown starts at 5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday are busy too. I will write more about it next week.

Our first celebration to mark the new Dominion of Canada was a big surprise to most people in Tillsonburg, when at 12:01 in the morning on July 1st, the citizens were awakened by a cannon booming and church bells ringing! I am trying to persuade the museum to recreate this event! Especially the cannon. There are two on the old Ingersoll High School lawn that could be moved to T’burg and reworked to fire! This would be so much fun, however I expect my enthusiasm will be curtailed.

On July 1st, it's the ever popular Canada Day pancake breakfast at the Stations Arts Centre; a Fun Fair at Annandale House, free tours of our National Historic Site and the once in a lifetime opportunity to meet Her Royal Brittanic Majesty, Queen Victoria, and our first Prime Minister Sir John A. MacDonald, who will be attended by the THS Pioneers. The new Celebration Plaza at Memorial Park will be opened, followed stage entertainment and evening fireworks. There will be many more details for July 1st coming up so plan to stay in town and celebrate with family and friends right here!

Check out these and other celebrations at http://calendar.tillsonburg.ca

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