New West usually celebrates Canada Day with the New Westminster Multicultural Festival, celebrations at Queen’s Park and fireworks at Westminster Quay.
Because of COVID-19, however, 2020 was different.
CANADA DAY CELEBRATIONS GOING ONLINE
The same as other municipalities in Metro Vancouver, the City of New Westminster had to cancelled its regular in-person Canada Day celebrations. This was due to concerns about the spread of the novel coronavirus and the Province of BC’s ban on gatherings of more than 50 people.
Although the live event didn’t happen in 2020, the city still celebrated July 1st with its own online virtual event.
During the “event” in 2020, residents of New Westminster were encouraged to sing O Canada from their gardens and balconies at 7 pm. People were also invited to submit photos of themselves, friends and family members showing off their “Canadian” lives from the past year, and to paint rocks to put on display. To finish things off, virtual fireworks displays started at 10:00 pm and were accessible via the Snapd Hub App.
For more information see New Westminster’s Canada Day page.
New Westminster Canada Day Events
In a typical year, on July 1st, there are Canada Day celebrations all over Metro Vancouver, including at the following three venues in New Westminster.
New Westminster Multicultural Festival
In years where there isn’t a pandemic, the Multicultural Festival takes place along the waterfront at Westminster Pier Park from around 2:00 until 10:00 pm, with the fireworks blasting off at 10 o’clock. It’s a free event with multicultural entertainment, ethnic foods, market vendors, dancing and community organization information booths.
Westminster Pier Park is located at #1 6th Street, so near where New Westminster’s giant red “W” sculpture can be found.
This event did not take place in 2020 due to the COVID-19 virus. 2021 details are to be determined.
Click New West Multicultural Festival for more information.
Canada Day at Queen’s Park
In years not affected by a global pandemic, Canada Day celebrations also take place at Queen’s Park (at around 100 3rd Avenue) from 11:30 until 2:30 pm.
Queen’s Park is a beautiful park with walking trails, a flower garden, large playground, kids’ water play area and a petting zoo. On July 1st there is also live music in the bandstand as well as crafts and various family-friendly activities in the immediate area.
Performers at the event in 2019 included GinaLina Music, the Seabillys and Disco Funeral. 2021 details are to be confirmed.
For a sample of the entertainment to expect, the lineup for 2018 in Queen’s Park included the following:
- 11:30 am – 5 on a String (a Vancouver-based Bluegrass band)
- 12:00 pm – Opening Ceremony and Singing of O Canada
- 12:30 pm – Roland & Emma Nipp (a father and young daughter guitar-playing duo)
- 1:05 pm – Echo Nebraska (a 5-person Folk-Rock band)
- 2:00 pm – Khac Chi Bamboo (a Vietnamese instrumental group)
- 2:25 pm – Pernell Reichert (a local Folk Music group)
See the City of New Westminster‘s website for more information.
Fireworks & Festivities at Westminster Quay
New Westminster’s Hyack Festival Society usually hosts Canada Day festivities at the River Market at 810 Quayside Drive from 2:00 until 11:00 pm with fireworks at the end.
The 2020 event was unfortunately cancelled due to the spread of COVID-19. Details are to be determined for the 2021 event.
In years when it does take place, the event here includes live entertainment and market vendors on the top floor of the River Market.
The schedule of events and entertainment here in 2019 was the following. We expect future event details to be similar.
- 2:00 pm – Quayside Voices
- 3:00 pm – Bulgarian Treasure
- 3:15 pm – Honourable Guard
- 4:00 pm – Jeff Neufeld
- 5:00 pm – Carmina Bolinao
- 6:00 pm – Chinese Ribbon Dance
- 6:30 pm – Barry Wilson
- 8:00 pm – NOVA SOL
- 9:00 pm – Peter Julian
- 10:00 pm – Fireworks
See the Hyack Festival‘s website for more information.
For ideas about other things to do in the area, plus New West festivals at other times of the year, click New Westminster.
For a list of other July 1st events in other parts of the Lower Mainland, click Metro Vancouver on Canada Day.