What is Canada Day? Canada Day is a national holiday celebrating the country’s independence from Great Britain in 1867. The new nation, still loyal to Great Britain, was called the Dominion of Canada and consisted of only four provinces ((Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario, and Quebec). Now, there are 10 provinces and 3 territories. At first the holiday was called Dominion Day, but in 1982 Canada gained complete independence from Great Britain and it was renamed to Canada Day.
It is a day for Canadians everywhere to show pride in their country’s history and culture.
While it may be referred to as Canada’s birthday, it is important to acknowledge and celebrate the country’s indigenous culture and their important role in the country’s rich history before 1867.
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When is Canada Day? It takes place every year on July 1.
How is Canada Day Celebrated? Canada Day celebrations take place throughout the country and across the globe. Parades, outdoor concerts, barbecues, fireworks, festivals, flag displays, and wearing red and white – the national colors of Canada, are all popular ways the day (or weekend) is celebrated.
It is also a day for citizenship ceremonies for the country’s newest citizens. Concerts and cultural displays are held on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario -the nation’s capital.
Resources & Activities to Celebrate and Learn More About Canada
- Visit our Country Profile page for a detailed map of Canada, photographs, an infographic, flag, currency, and national symbols.
- Listen to the Canadian National Anthem. The song “O Canada” was officially made the national anthem on Canada Day, 1980.
Books & Activities About Canada
- Canada ABC A beautifully illustrated board book of Canadian symbols, events, and more.
- M is for Maple A Canadian alphabet book sharing the country’s history, symbols, and culture. (Ages 6 and up)
- Oh, Canada! A trip from coast to coast, learning about each province or territory. (Ages 3-7)
- A Canadian Year: 12 Months in the Life of Canada’s Kids Meet five multicultural Canadian kids at play, school, home, and enjoying their country. (Ages 4-9)
- Canada’s 150th Birthday A look at the Canadian celebration of the country’s 150th birthday in 2017.
- Canada 150 Colouring Book 150 scenes to color celebrating the beauty of Canada.
- Have some fun in the kitchen, and make a Canada Day recipe to celebrate. Chatelaine offers 14 Classic Canadian Recipes: Lobster rolls, poutine, caesars, bannock…
- Make a Canada Day wreath, handprint flag, or Canadian beaver puppet. Meraki Lane has rounded up 25 Crazy Fun Canada Day Crafts for Kids to pick from.
- Free printable coloring pages to inspire children learning about Canada or celebrating Canada Day.
- Canada Research Project for kids encourages investigation into the country’s geography and culture. Following written directions, kids complete a variety activities related to maps, the flag, currency, important people, food, sports, and more. Makes a great artifact to share and keep!