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Saturday, July 13, 2024
Simcoe Park, sweet surprises and beyond: Canada Day in NOTL
Victor Packard hands out a piece of the oh-so popular Canada Day cake. Julia Sacco.
Dave Fraser poses with he beloved 1958 Ford retractable Skyliner. Julia Sacco.
NOTLers and visitors alike indulged in the delicious Canada Day cake made by Willow Cakes and Pastries. This year's cake was Alice in Wonderland-themed. Julia Sacco.
Families and kiddos waved the Canadian flag proudly as the Canada Day Cake Parade made its way down Queen Street. Julia Sacco.
Andrea Kaiser, Lord Mayor Gary Zalepa and Wayne Gates cut into a piece of the Canada Day cake. Dave Van De Laar.
The Town Crier sat atop his chariot and led the Canada Day cake into Simcoe Park. Dave Van De Laar.
A large crowd flooded Simcoe Park for a taste of the Canada Day cake. Dave Van De Laar.
From left, Karen Moore, Eileen Plowman, Dave Plowman and Stephen Moore enjoyed a slice of cake amid Saturday's Canada Day festivities. The Plowman's came all the way from Barrie to celebrate in Niagara. Julia Sacco.
Fireworks at Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery on Canada Day. (Frank Haynes)
Fireworks at Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery on Canada Day. (Frank Haynes)
Cake parade from above. (Sonja Schindeler)
Queen Street walkers. (Sonja Schindeler)

Whichever way you chose to celebrate, Niagara-on-the-Lake was the place to be for Canada’s 156th birthday celebration. 

The highlight for many of Saturday afternoon was Simcoe Park’s barbecue hosted by the Rotary Club, followed by the Canada Day Cake Parade, which featured this year’s surprise-themed cake from Willow Cakes and Pastries. 

The Alice and Wonderland-themed cake was unveilled along Queen Street to hundreds of bystanders as the Fife and Drum Corps led the dessert of honour down the road. 

Lord Mayor Gary Zalepa, MPP Wayne Gates and MP Tony Baldinelli walked the parade route and handed out Canadian flags to onlookers.

At Simcoe Park, a large crowd of NOTLers and visitors anxiously waited to grab a slice. 

Residents Joan King and Donna Seymour were happy to indulge in a bit of classic Canada Day fun but spent most of their holiday doing things a little differently. 

The two had a table set up in Simcoe Park until 3 p.m. selling Terry Fox t-shirts to raise money for cancer research. 

“We’re selling shirts because Terry Fox was a Canadian hero,” King told The Lake Report.

King and other volunteers from the Terry Fox Run sell shirts yearly throughout the summer and King said Canada Day is the perfect time to do so. 

This year’s goal is to encourage people to get a team together for the run in September. 

“My team has been together since 1992, we’ve had different people come and go but because it’s a team, we keep each other going,” said Seymour. 

Those who wanted to show their support for a Canadian legend could purchase a shirt for $25. 

In the back of the park, some NOTLers spent their Canada Day showing off their vintage cars to excited onlookers for the annual Canada Day car show. 

“You get to meet people that you would never, ever meet,” said onlooker Cheryl Fraser.

“There was a young guy here with his grandparents and he was so interested in the old vintage cars it was amazing. That’s where this hobby is headed, with the younger crowd,” Dave Fraser, her husband, added.

Aside from Simcoe Park’s festivities, Canada Day celebrations took place at Fort George with fireworks at 10 p.m., Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery with fireworks at 10:10 p.m. and afternoon celebrations at the Legion and the Irish Harp. 

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