Fireworks, performances across the country to mark start of Canada's 150th year

A Canada Day tradition is being re-purposed tonight to herald the start of Canada's 150th year.    

A massive fireworks display over Parliament Hill _ usually reserved for July 1 _ will take place at 8:17 eastern time and midnight to mark the beginning of 2017 and a year-long birthday bash across the country.    

New Year's Eve events with a 150th birthday flavour are being held in 19 cities across the country, including St. John's, N.L., which will be the first to hit the midnight milestone.

The celebration in the capital, set to cost about $2.5 million, will include performances by Canadian artists Radio Radio, Brett Kissel and Carly Rae Jepsen, and will also feature remarks by Canada's Heritage Minister Melanie Joly.   

She's in charge of more than $210 million being set aside for 150th anniversary projects and events planned for the anniversary. 

A national infrastructure program was also set up to support renovation, expansion and improvement in community and cultural infrastructure

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