Monday, May 20, 2013

Public Holiday, here I come: The Significance of Victoria Day

Today is known as Victoria day and is marked as a public holiday at a national level. Queen Victoria was born on May 24, 1819. Following the death of three uncles and her father, she became Queen of the United Kingdom on June 20, 1837 and reigned until her death on January 22, 1901. Victoria is still the longest-reigning monarch of the United Kingdom. The monarch's birthday has been celebrated in Canada since before the beginning of Queen Victoria's reign. However, the date has changed over the years, recently the Monday before May 25 has been adopted as Victoria Day, which is a Canadian statutory holiday. Also, it marks the unofficial start of the cottage season where cases of beer (as in 2-4 cases) are consumed by hard working Canadians. For others, the long Victoria Day weekend marks the end of the winter and the unofficial start of the spring or summer season. In some cities, fireworks displays or parades are held to mark Victoria Day. One of the most notable parades is held in the city of Victoria, British Columbia, which was named after Queen Victoria. Many people gather in parks to enjoy fireworks displays, which are particularly impressive in Hamilton and Toronto.

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