Heritage Day is so much more than just a long weekend!!!
As I heard people in the office talking about the upcoming long weekend, I reflected on how much people cherish a three day weekend (I do too). In thinking about why we were having a long weekend, I did a little research. I was thinking about how important the August long weekend is to all of us and wondered, what is this day all about.
In 1974, the Government of Alberta declared the first Monday of August to be an annual holiday. The day is set aside to celebrate the many cultures that make Alberta such an incredible place to live and work. I was also reminded that Heritage Day is an optional holiday in Alberta and not a “General Holiday.” This means that businesses have the option to choose to declare the day as a holiday or not.
Across the province many events will take place. It is a perfect day to learn about other cultures, customs and beliefs. Knowing others is a first and great step in living harmoniously and sharing our wonderful province with others.
Some of the activities that will take place include:
The Edmonton Heritage Festival is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. In 1976, 11 ethnic communities joined together in Edmonton’s Hawrelak Park to display their traditional cuisine, arts and entertainment. The event grew into a major attraction to celebrate Edmonton’s vibrant multicultural heritage. This year more than 85 cultures from all over the world will be part of this wonderful celebration. Food, cultural performances, arts and an opportunity to learn about other cultures make this festival a must on your list if you happen to be in Edmonton.
Heritage Park opened in Calgary in 1964 to celebrate our history and heritage. They are hosting a day full of special events and activities, including traditional dances, musical performances, old-fashioned games, and much more!
The Red Deer Museum + Art Gallery will be exploring Alberta’s diverse cultural celebrations at their party in the park. They have organized family friendly activities and performances so that everyone can enjoy the sunshine on Monday.
Various other communities across the province will have their own events as well.
People from all parts of the world live and work in Alberta and make this province great. Celebration is the meaning of the day. I hope that you celebrate the day in a special way, be it through one of the public events or privately appreciating all that makes Alberta GREAT!!!!