Tony Lofaro, The Ottawa Citizen - The Canada Day musical lineup this year brings back some familiar faces and also pays tribute to the 400th anniversary of the founding of Quebec City.
The festivities will also highlight historical events such as the 250th anniversary of the birth of Canadian parliamentary democracy in Nova Scotia and the 125th anniversary of the founding of the colony of British Columbia.
The days begins with a military parade at 9 a.m. through the downtown streets and arriving on Parliament Hill at 9:30 a.m. for the traditional flag-raising ceremony, followed by Changing the Guard and the RCMP Musical Ride. Les Fêtes de la Nouvelle-France, a popular Quebec festival celebrating the founding of Quebec City, will entertain the crowds in the afternoon with street performers, dancing and giant puppets.
"Getting the artists from across the country is a key thing so that we have the representation and celebrate our diversity," said Marie Lemay, the NCC's chief executive officer, following the news conference.
"It's an honour for us to have them (artists), and I hope it's an honour for them to come because it's the biggest celebration of Canada's birthday in the country."
Most of the museums and attractions will be free on Canada Day, and visitors can also check out the original van that was home to Terry Fox during his 1980 Marathon of Hope. A free shuttle will operate between Jacques Cartier Park and Major's Hill Park until 6 p.m., and OC Transpo and STO bus service will be free beginning at 10 p.m.
The day caps off with an evening fireworks display that this year will feature additional pyrotechnic effects, the NCC said.
For more information on the festivities, go online to canadaday.gc.ca