Commemorated on November 11th throughout Metro Vancouver, Remembrance Day is a day when Canadians remember past wars and the sacrifices made by veterans.
As a national holiday, Remembrance Day isn’t a victory celebration, but rather a time to reflect about the horrors of war and the sacrifices made by the men and women that have fought for Canada and the defense of other countries.
In 2018 Remembrance Day occurs on Sunday, November 11, and ceremonies commemorating the day take place throughout the Lower Mainland.
As a statutory holiday, schools, government offices and most businesses are closed on the day.
Remembrance Day in the Lower Mainland
In the morning on November 11th each year, Remembrance Day ceremonies take place across Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. Solemn memorial services also occur at cenotaphs and other locations throughout Canada and most British Commonwealth countries, as well as in other places in the world.
Probably the largest Remembrance Day event in the Lower Mainland is the one in downtown Vancouver at the Cenotaph in Victory Square. Other large ones take place in North Vancouver (at Victoria Park), Surrey, Richmond and elsewhere. For more information on these and other event locations, see Remembrance Day 2018 Ceremonies.
What Happens at a Remembrance Day Ceremony
Remembrance Day ceremonies usually include a gathering at a park or cenotaph, a memorial service, and the laying of wreaths by veterans and dignitaries.
At most Remembrance Day events there is also a parade, a marching band, bagpipes played by men in kilts, and RCMP mounted police officers, cadets and veterans all in their uniforms. There is also the singing of the national anthem – O Canada – the playing of a bugle, and sometimes a prayer. As November is one of Vancouver’s rainiest months, there are usually also lots of umbrellas.
To support veterans, people buy and wear poppies, which are plastic red flowers, and for which donation proceeds go to supporting veterans.
Traditionally, Canadians mark two minutes of silence at 11 am on November 11th each year to mark the end of World War I, and to remember sacrifices made in other wars since. Remembrance Day is a national holiday in Canada and a time when Canadians join together to remember those that have lost their lives in all wars.
For details about specific Remembrance Day events throughout Metro Vancouver, click Remembrance Day 2018 Ceremonies.
Lest we forget. …