Celebrate Canada Day in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows on Wednesday.

Celebrating the Maple Leaf

Did you know, though, that the Maple Leaf has been this country’s only flag that it can call its own?

This Canada Day marks the 50th anniversary of the Maple Leaf as the nation’s flag.

Did you know, though, that the Maple Leaf has been this country’s only flag that it can call its own?

According to Canadian Heritage, a federal department, Canada’s only other official flag has been the Union Jack, also known as the Royal Union flag, since confederation in 1867.

While variations of what was known as the red ensign, a flag that resembles today’s provincial flags of Manitoba or Ontario, were used from 1871, through both world wars, and until 1965, the ensign never was Canada’s official flag.

Just as well, because people today don’t recognize the ensign, even though it was just as common as the Union Jack before the Maple Leaf became our flag in 1965.

Canadian Heritage says that the federal government twice tried to create a uniquely Canadian flag, first, after the First World War, then again after the Second World War, without success. Consensus just couldn’t be reached.

But with Canada’s centennial birthday approaching, the government restarted the process again in 1964. After agonizing over dozens of different designs, a parliamentary committee composed of all parties agreed on the single, recognizable, red maple leaf on a white background.

Parliament approved the Maple Leaf as the National Flag of Canada in December 1964 and it was first flown from Parliament Hill in February 1965.

To celebrate, the City of Maple Ridge is having a huge community art project in Memorial Peace Park on Wednesday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Everyone is invited to draw a picture of the flag or bring a photo of you or your family and friends with the flag or wearing a Canadian jersey. You could also write a few lines to show appreciation and add it to the art project.

To add to the spirit, people are encouraged to dress in red and white. The city’s volunteers will be looking for the best-dressed citizens and awarding prizes.

Live music starts at 10 a.m. with bands such as The Crayons, The Road Dogs and The Johnson Brothers.

The official flag raising and ceremony happens at 12:30 p.m. and features a march-in by the Royal Canadian Legion Branch No. 88 and members of the Ridge Meadows RCMP. That’s when people are asked to sing O Canada.

The day will also feature a giant activity area with mini-golf, balloon twisting, face painting, crafts, mascots, prize giveaways, a trivia challenge, hydration station (bring your own cup or water bottle) and a multicultural food fair.

Anchoring the west side of the park will be the Haney Farmers Market, featuring local farmers, chefs and artists.

The Downtown Maple Ridge Business Improvement Association will host a summer market. Vendors will be wearing ethnic clothing, while the BIA booth will follow a Dutch theme.

A free craft section for the kids will also be there.

• Anyone who grabs a photo of their experience at any one of the BIA’s Summer Markets, could win a $25 gift card to a downtown store/restaurant. Post your picture to Instagram or Facebook, using #shopmapleridge and #summermarkets.

• For more information about Canada Day, contact Dave Speers at dspeers@mapleridge.ca or call 604-467-7433, Ext 1.


Fund Run in Pitt Meadows

In Pitt Meadows, Canada Day festivities take place in Spirit Square from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on July 1, highlighted by an annual Canada Day Charity run, musical entertainment and children’s activities and games.

The action gets under way at 8 a.m., when the local Lion’s Club hosts a pancake breakfast at Spirit Square, located on Harris Road, beside city hall.

This Canada Day also marks the 10 year anniversary of the Athletes in Kind charity run. The annual run raises money for the B.C. Childhood Cancer Parents Association. Since its inception in 2005, the Fund Run has raised more than $170,000. The one- and two-kilometre portions of the race start at 8:30 a.m., followed by the eight km run at 9 a.m.

There will be AiK custom medals for finishers in every distance, age group awards, prize draws and race socks and bandanas for sale. The proceeds of the sales are matched by Scotiabank.

The annual Jan Saunders Memorial Award will also be presented on race day. It is Athletes In Kind’s most prestigious award, recognizing an individual’s outstanding contribution from categories such as volunteerism, fundraising and mentorship.

The official Canada Day ceremony takes place at 11 a.m. and will feature free birthday cake.

Anyone with room left after cake can enter the watermelon eating contest at 12:30 p.m.

Other activities include live music, Click and Clown and children’s activities before wrapping up at 2 p.m.





Just Posted

Flames lose at home, win in Mission

Host Kodiaks on Friday night

Weavers and spinners to kick off holiday shopping

The Whonnock Weavers and Spinners’ 38th annual exhibit and sale takes place Nov. 25

Strong support for Pitt Meadows transportation projects

Overpass/underpass projects get majority support

Police aim to prevent retaliation after Hells Angel found dead in Maple Ridge

IHIT confirms Chad Wilson, 43, was the victim of a ‘targeted’ homicide

Ridge Meadows Hospital parking is still pay, but streets free

Surrey has removed meters on streets, asking Fraser Health for free parking at the hospital

UPDATE: IHIT confirms identity of Hells Angels homicide victim

Chad John Wilson was one of four men arrested in Spain in 2013 on allegations of smuggling cocaine.

Former NHL player and coach Dan Maloney dies at 68

Maloney coached the Toronto Maple Leafs and Winnipeg Jets

Ex-MSU president charged with lying to police about Nassar

Lou Anna Simon was charged Tuesday with lying to police during an investigation

Otter makes a snack out of koi fish in Vancouver Chinese garden

Staff say the otter has eaten at least five fish

Police looking into two more incidents at private Toronto all-boys’ school

Police and the school have said two of the prior incidents involved an alleged sexual assault

B.C. lumber mills struggle with shortage of logs, price slump

Signs of recovery after U.S. market swings, industry executive says

25% of Canadians still won’t say they use pot, survey says

Statistics Canada poll says Canadians on average were 18.9 years old when they first tried pot.

Canucks’ 50/50 jackpot expected to surpass $1 million

The guaranteed prize for one lucky winner will be $500,000 minimum when Vancouver hosts LA Nov 27

The latest advent calendar trend: Holiday cannabis

A Canadian company is giving people from coast to coast a new way to celebrate the Christmas countdown.

Most Read