Canada Day festivities will be extra sweet this year, as the big celebration makes for a long weekend across the country.
But it might be a slightly soggy start for the events scheduled at Saskatoon’s Diefenbaker Park on Friday.
Environment Canada’s David Phillips said there’s the chance of showers and thunderstorms for July 1 and 2.
“Certainly the sun will be there on Saturday, a little bit of a mixed bag, and then Sunday may be the finest day,” Phillips said.
Temperatures for the tail end of the weekend are expected to reach 28 C.
However, there will be plenty to keep people distracted from any rain at this year’s Optimist Canada Day Presented by PotashCorp.
All of the traditional favorites will be included: the citizenship ceremony, birthday cake for Canada and more than a dozen cultural dance performances by local groups.
As folks finish singing O Canada during the official ceremonies – two CT-155 Hawk jets from 15 Wing Moose Jaw are scheduled to do a flypast at 11:50 a.m.
They’ll be just 150 meters overhead when they zoom by.
Performances by local musicians, children’s activities, a flea market and food vendors are also slated throughout the day; the full schedule is available online.
As for reason everyone flocks to the park, the PotashCorp Fireworks – that show is scheduled to kick off at 10:40 p.m.
Families coming to the park after 7 p.m. can pick up PotashCorp light sticks for their kids.
The Saskatchewan SPCA would like to remind families that not all celebrations are fun for animals.
The loud, unpredictable noise and flashing light from fireworks can cause stress and anxiety for many dogs and cats. As well, the metals and chemicals used in the manufacture of fireworks can be toxic if consumed by a curious pet.
The Saskatchewan SPCA suggests keeping pets indoors on those evenings when fireworks are planned in your area.
Transit service on Canada Day
Routes 1 and 17 will run in the vicinity of Diefenbaker Park on their regular Sunday/Holiday service until 9 p.m. Normal fares apply.
For fifteen minutes after the firework show ends, catch a free ride from Diefenbaker Park with Saskatoon Transit.
Four special routes will leave Diefenbaker Park from a temporary stop on the eastside of St. Henry Avenue, just south of Ruth Street.
Buses will follow a designated route; however, drivers will also stop on request at bus stops or locations where it’s safe to stop.
The four special service routes include:
- Bus #1 – will travel to the Downtown Terminal, then continue on 2nd Avenue and Warman Road and will end at the Lawson Terminal
- Bus #2 – will travel to the Downtown Terminal, then continue on 22nd Street and will end at the Confederation Terminal
- Bus #3 – will travel via Ruth Street to the Market Mall Terminal, then continue on Taylor Street and Acadia Drive and will end at the Centre Mall Terminal
- Bus #4 – will travel via 8th Street to the Centre Mall Terminal, then continue on to Central Avenue and 115th Street and will end at the bus stop at Berini Drive and 115th Street
Access Transit will extend its service hours until midnight on Canada Day so customers can take in the firework show at Diefenbaker Park.
Trips must be booked in advance as per normal booking procedures. Access Transit customers are reminded that subscriptions do not apply on statutory holidays.
For more information contact Transit Customer Service at 306-975-3100.
Tips for home fire shows
For those planning their own fireworks in Saskatoon, only low-hazard products may be detonated on private property between dusk and 11p.m. on Friday.
These are fireworks designed for recreational use and include: some roman candles, sparklers, fountains, wheels, volcanoes, mines and snakes that travel less than 50 m (160 ft) high.
All others, labelled high-hazard, require a professional with a licence.
Make sure it is not windy, that everyone under 18 is supervised by an adult and that you always carefully light the fuse at its tip.
Other than sparklers, never light or hold a lit firework in your hand.
People are also reminded to choose locations wisely:
- Fireworks are only allowed on private property and cannot be detonated on any public spaces.
- Need a wide clear site with no overhead obstructions and the ability to stabilize and/or secure the fireworks.
- You are responsible for any debris that may land on your spectators or another person’s property.
- Wait at least 30 minutes before beginning the clean-up process. At that time, it is a good idea to dispose of used fireworks and debris in a pail of water. Never try to relight or fix the fuse on fireworks that didn’t go off.