October 01, 2016 - 2:52 PM
VICTORIA - A timeline of key events during the tour of British Columbia and Yukon by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge:
Saturday, Sept. 24:
— Prince William, Kate and their children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, arrive at Victoria's airport, where they are met by Canadian dignitaries including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The prime minister kneels and invites three-year-old George to high-five him, but the young prince shakes his head in declining the gesture.
— The royal motorcade is greeted by cheers as it makes its way to the B.C. legislature. William and Kate wave from their car.
— William and Kate participate in a solemn ceremony at the cenotaph. In his first remarks of the tour, William says: "Catherine and I have asked to meet as many people from as many walks of life as we can while we're here. We're very much looking forward to learning about how Canadians are tackling some of the biggest challenges of the day."
Sunday, Sept. 25:
— The duke and duchess visit an addition recovery program in Vancouver's gritty Downtown Eastside. Over tea, they meet mothers who are recovering from addiction.
— At a reception where they meet young Canadians, including Olympic and Paralympic athletes, William is asked about his experiences playing rugby by a member of Canada's women's team. "I wasn't, obviously, as good as you guys," William said, drawing laughs. "I tried my best."
— William and Kate visit the Kitsilano Coast Guard Station, where they met with representatives of the Canadian Coast Guard, B.C. Ambulance and other emergency officials, discussing the mental health issues faced by first responders. Prince William, a helicopter pilot with East Anglian Air Ambulance, recently spoke about "dark moments" in his job for a documentary that was made for National Air Ambulance Week in the U.K.
Monday, Sept. 26:
— Bad weather in Bella Bella causes the cancellation of a boat and float plane tour of the unique rainforest coastline in B.C.
— Prince William formally adds the Great Bear Rainforest to the Queen's Commonwealth Canopy and lauds efforts to protect the area as it joins other forest conservation projects as part of the program that includes all 53 Commonwealth countries.
— In Victoria, Prince William adds a ring of reconciliation to the Black Rod, the ceremonial staff used in the legislature when the monarch or her provincial representative is present. The ring is meant to represent the connection between the Crown, indigenous peoples and all British Columbians. Grand Chief Ed John of B.C.'s First Nations Summit says it's time to change how the Crown interacts with First Nations groups. "The current Crown approach of deny and delay cannot continue," he said. "The status quo has not served indigenous people well."
Tuesday, Sept. 27:
— Prince William and Kate attend an even to mark the 10th anniversary of the University of British Columbia's Okanagan campus. Chief John Kruger of the Penticton Indian Band urges the royals to advocate reconciliation for aboriginal peoples. "True reconciliation involves the honour of the Crown, the federal government, provincial government and the indigenous people of this land."
— The royal couple also visits the Taste of British Columbia Festival at a winery overlooking Okanagan Lake where they sample food prepared by some of the province's top chefs.
— The royal tour moves to Yukon, where they are officially welcomed at a ceremony in Whitehorse that includes members of the Canadian Rangers. William and his brother, Prince Harry, were made honorary members of the reserve unit in 2009. William and Kate finish the day at the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre, taking in a night of local music, dance and storytelling.
Wednesday, Sept. 28:
— The duke and duchess connect old technology with the new, helping Doug Bell, 90, turn a telegraph message into a tweet that travels around the world during a tour of the MacBride Museum in Whitehorse.
— They travel to Carcross, where they climb aboard a restored steam locomotive that dates back to the era of the Yukon Gold Rush and are entertained by First Nations dancers wearing colourful regalia and furs.
— The royal couple visit the Single Track to Success program at a snow-covered Montana Mountain, where they see an extensive network of mountain bike trails that have been built by young people.
Thursday, Sept. 29:
— Prince George and Princess Charlotte, who is 16 months, mix with children of military families at a garden party in Victoria held at Government House, the official residence of the lieutenant-governor. Charlotte is fascinated by some colourful balloons and spends time at a petting zoo with goats, rabbits, sheep and miniature horses. George plays at a bubble-making display with his father and asks a children's entertainer to make him balloons in the shape of a spider and volcano.
Friday, Sept. 30:
— Prince William and Kate travel to the small village of Skidegate on Haida Gwaii off the coast of B.C., arriving in a replica 15-metre Haida war canoe.
— Paddlers who helped ferry the duke and duchess to Skidegate wore T-shirts with a message opposing liquefied natural gas. Some of the dancers who performed wore anti-oil development shirts under their regalia, reading: No pipelines. No tankers. No problem.
— The duke and duchess visited the Haida Heritage Centre and Museum to learn about the tradition of carving totems as well as other cultural practices.
— They also toured the region's new hospital and health-care centre and capped off their day in the coastal islands with a fishing trip.
Saturday, Oct. 1:
— William and Kate visit Victoria's Cridge Centre for the Family, a non-profit society that offers child care, supportive housing, respite care and other social services; and they meet young people who have used the services of the Kelty Mental Health and Resource Centre.
— The final stop of the tour takes them on a cruise of the Victoria harbour aboard a tall ship operated by the Sail and Life Training Society, which teaches youth how to sail. They also meet representatives of the charity Jack.org, a student leadership program that supports mental health promotion.
Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version made an incorrect reference to indigenous costumes.
News from © The Canadian Press, 2016