Victoria's Canada Day festivities will feature bands, a "living" Canadian flag, food vendors and once again end with a colourful bang.
The city has unveiled its plan for the July 1 party, which will take place at the BC Legislature, Belleville Street and the Inner Harbour with events beginning at 10:30 a.m.
The city is offering 2,300 free red and white T-shirts in an attempt to once again create the largest living flag in Canada. Last year, more than 3,600 people arranged themselves into the shape of a Canada flag on the lawn of the legislature. The photo will be taken at 2 p.m., but anyone hoping to get a T-shirt should line-up at 10 a.m.
Family friendly activities like face-painting, a bouncy castle and displays from The Bateman Foundation Gallery of Nature and The Victoria Bug Zoo will pop up on Belleville Street along with food vendors.
Nêhiyawak, an Edmonton-based band featuring three Indigenous musicians, will headline the main stage at the legislature. The musical line-up will be rounded out by Dominic Pelletier, Khanvict, Diamond Café, Caleb Hart, Fortune Killers and Johnny Gr4ves.
Celebrations will culminate in a dazzling display of fireworks above the Inner Harbour at 10:20 p.m.
Organizers say the Canada Day festivities will focus on sustainable practices including the use of biodegradable and recyclable food and beverage containers, bins for compost, recycling and garbage and papier-mâché-based fireworks.
The event will also offer a free lock-up for cyclists to store their bikes.
City council recently debated the future of Canada Day celebrations due to a shortfall in the Victoria police department's budget for policing the special event.
Council voted to cover the $78,000 shortfall at a recent Committee of the Whole meeting but said the event could be scaled down or even cancelled in the future.
The single-day party usually attracts between 40,000 and 75,000 people to the downtown core.