July 1st marks the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation as “one Dominion under the Name of Canada” – whereby the colonies – Provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Canada (later to become Ontario and Québec) – were unified per the British North America Act of 1867.
The sesquicentennial got off to a great start earlier this year when Canada was named The Best Place to Visit in 2017 by The New York Times. On a personal note, one of my favorite vacations was a 2001 cross-country trip where I returned to NYC via Canada, going from Vancouver to Toronto via train. The Canadian Rockies were absolutely magnificent (photo below), as were the skies over Alberta.
The good news kept coming this spring when the critically acclaimed musical Come From Away went on to win a tony for Best Direction. It’s still playing at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre – if you haven’t seen it, I encourage you to – you can find my review here.
The evening of July 1st, the Empire State Building will be lit in red and white to mark Canada Day, and other festivities include:
Canada Day Cookout at Dirt Candy, 86 Allen Street from 5:30pm to 11:59pm
Joe’s Pub will host the 15th Annual New York Rocks the Great Canadian Songbook, once again produced and emcee’d by Jeff Breithaupt and featuring an all-star line-up of singers backed by Don Breithaupt and the WORKIN’ FOR THE WEEKEND HOOSE BAND, no Canadian hit song will be safe from (northern) exposure. This year’s all-star line-up includes: Marissa Mulder, Ophira Eisenberg, J’Sun, Carolyn Leonhart, Jamie Leonhart, Jeremy Kushnier, Christina Bianco, Alyson Palmer, Tyley Ross, Greg Naughton, Shelley McPherson, Michael Halling, PJ Griffith, Victoria Lecta Cave, Amy Cervini and The Breithaupt Brothers. 7:00pm, Joe’s Pub at the Public Theatre, 425 Lafayette Street.
The festivities aren’t limited to just one day. During the entire month of July, you’ll be able to see a diverse collection of Canada’s finest theatre, literary and musical artists, when the Soulpepper Theatre of Toronto will be in the Big Apple with a full company of artists to present a month-long festival at The Pershing Square Signature Center on 42nd Street, performing their adaptations of classics such as On Human Bondage and Spoon River, as well as ensemble creations such as Cage and Alligator Pie, no to mention a concert series and forums on innovations in the performing arts. Every evening there will be a free cabaret performance in the Signature Cafe and Bar (check the schedule for show times; most start between 8:30pm and 9:30pm).
If you’re looking for more information on Canadian events in NYC, check out the Canadian Association of NY (CANY) a member-run organization that has been the focal point for the Canadian community in the NYC area since 1864. CANY hosts social, cultural and business events throughout the year; on their website you can fin a list of Canada Day 150 events.
This year also marks Montréal’s 375th birthday – Fort Ville-Marie was founded in 1642. You’ll find more information about Québec and Québec in NYC on the Facebook page of the Québec Government Office in New York and also on their Twitter feed .
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CANADA!!