KAMLOOPS - Every year tens of thousands of people decked out in red and white head down to Riverside Park to celebrate Canada Day, and this year will be no different, except maybe the slightly cooler temperatures in the forecast.
The celebrations will begin at 7 a.m. with a pancake breakfast by the tennis courts and the Canadian citizenship ceremony will start at 9:30 a.m. at the Rotary Bandshell. The Get Canadian Run will also take place first thing in Riverside Park, with an official start time of 8 a.m. The run is the first in a series for the RUNClub this season.
People are encouraged to avoid parking downtown by taking transit, which will again be free on Canada Day and will run on a Saturday schedule, or ride your bike and take advantage of ‘pedal parking’ on site at the tennis courts. Bring your own lock and the MS Society will supervise bicycles from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Art in the Park runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and features more than 90 artists as well as live music, dance and theatre performances.
In addition there will be cultural displays, international food booths and community and cultural performances throughout the day. The opening ceremonies will take place starting at 11 a.m. at the bandshell, followed by cake, and then Gleneagle, The Kingpins and Geoff Morris and Cross (a tribute to Garth Brooks) will begin live performances starting at 7 p.m.
The annual fireworks display will begin around 10:30 p.m. Asst. Fire Chief Dave McMahon says the city organized fireworks are happening and encourages everyone to take in the city display instead of trying to set off their own since there are no fireworks permitted in town other than the display organized through the city.
“We are working in close conjunction with the organizers of the event and the RCMP,” McMahon says, noting they will have two high volume water tenders in place as a precaution.
McMahon notes anyone lighting fireworks will be issued a fine and there are criminal consequences for fireworks causing damage to any property.
“Come and enjoy the fireworks at Riverside Park instead,” he says.
If you’d rather avoid the huge crowds, Savona is hosting Canada Day, and the 130th birthday of the community, at the beach and park. There will be live music from local bands from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m., a kids zone area, Zumba demonstration, barbecue concession, beer garden, prizes, craft vendors and more.
Environment Canada is calling for temperatures to be above seasonal normals in Kamloops this Canada Day but this year the mercury is expected to only hit about 30 Celsius. The weather office is also calling for sunny skies Wednesday.
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