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West Nipissing journeys through time this Canada Day

Vendors, games, and a musical spanning the decades highlight July 1st festivities
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West Nipissing has a day full of events to celebrate Canada Day / Stock image

The Municipality of West Nipissing and the West Nipissing Dream Catchers theatre group have partnered up to produce a full day of Canada Day festivities. It all takes place at the Sturgeon Falls Arena, at 219 O’Hara Street.

Admission is free, and visitors will be able to browse the wares of local vendors, as there are around 50 tables to peruse. Under the same roof will be a host of carnival style games—yes, there will be a ring toss—and kids of all ages can test their skills with those.

Katherine Clark, who founded Nipissing Dream Catchers, mentioned how she had planned to produce a Canada Day gala back in 2020—a year after she formed the group—but the pandemic threw a wrench into those plans.

But now everything is a go, and Clark—whose group is composed entirely of volunteers—is happy the crew was able “to put together something what would be fun for everybody,” and help “bring families together” on Canada’s special day.

The vendors fair and carnival games are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. After this, holidaymakers are invited to the community concert the Nipissing Dream Catchers have cooked up, which takes place at the Marcel Noel Hall—also located within the arena.

The concert features a variety of local performers—about 25 in total—who are taking the mic to deliver some solid gold hits from decades past. Expect to hear songs from the 1940s to today, and Clark knows “it’s going to be a pretty great show, people are excited about it” already. The show runs from 6 until 9 p.m., doors open at 5:30, and admission is free.

As a volunteer organization, Clark mentioned how thankful she is for the support from the community, especially local businesses who provided donations that helped cover costs for the carnival game rentals. She also mentioned that “we could always use volunteers,” so if you feel like helping at the event, say hi to Clark and she’ll give you something to do.

Overall, Canada Day is turning out to be “one enormous event going on the entire day.” Because after the fun at the Arena, and once dusk settles in, a fireworks display erupts at Sturgeon Falls Beach. If it rains, the show is off, so cross your fingers those skies stay open.

With two years having passed without a celebration, Mayor Joanne Savage is “embracing the event with open arms,” and is grateful for all of the volunteers for helping bring the event to life and allowing “people to celebrate together” again.

She also is pleased with the new location for the events. In previous years, Canada Day festivities were held at the museum, but having it at the arena, “is more easily accessible” for a lot of people. “Happy Canada Day to all our citizens of West Nipissing,” Mayor Savage declared, “we’re very blessed and fortunate to live in such a wonderful country.”

David Briggs is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter who works out of BayToday, a publication of Village Media. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada.


David Briggs

About the Author: David Briggs

David Briggs is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter covering civic and diversity issues for BayToday. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada
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