Fifty new Canadians will be sworn in during a Canada Day celebration at Fort Langley National Historic Site.
Activities at FLNHS will kick off with the annual swearing-in ceremony, and be followed by a day packed with family-oriented fun and entertainment throughout the village.
The festivities in Fort Langley get underway at 8 a.m. with the Lions Club’s traditional pancake breakfast on King Street.
Cloverdale-Langley City MP John Aldag will lead then lead the swearing-in program and welcome 50 new Canadian sat 10 a.m. by the Big House inside FLNHS. Anyone is invited to take part in the event and view the ceremony if they wish.
The traditional flag raising and singing of O Canada will follow, as well the serving of free celebratory Canadian themed cake.
The reason the Fort is such an important aspect of Canada Day in Langley is because of its long history, said FLNHS promotions officer Nancy Hildebrand.
“Fort Langley National Historic Site is a special place because it was where B.C. all began. So it fits in with the history of Canada and what is being celebrated,” Hildebrand explained.
Lisa Shepherd will be offering Métis jigging workshops throughout the day while a rotating line up of special guest performers including Bhangra Dancing by the Rangla Punjab Arts Academy and the Langley Ukulele Ensemble will stop by to entertain.
FLNHS staples including pens of farm animals, heritage interpreters, and the on-duty blacksmith will also be there to help celebrate Canada’s birthday. Regular hours apply July 1 but admission will be free.
“Some people only come on Canada Day,” said Hildebrand, “so we have our regular activities and own history on display such as our blacksmith demonstration.”
Outside the fort walls, the Langley Centennial Museum opens to the public at 10 a.m. and will raise the Canadian flag outside the neighbouring BC Farm Museum.
A children’s colouring contest will be held at the Centennial Museum – the winner will receive a free, one-session family pass to the Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience at the Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre.
Kwantlen First Nation artist Helen Carr will present workshops where participants can learn the basics of beading. Two free half-hour sessions will be offered on a first come basis, at 11 and 11:45 a.m.
Outside the museums, a Kid’s Zone will feature a magic show with Edward the Magician, a juggling workshop with Mike Battie, a performance by ventriloquist Kellie Haines, and various crafts and pioneer themed games.
Richard Tichelman & the Band will also perform at the Centennial Museum at noon.
Barbecues will be held in support of the Township of Langley Fire Fighter’s Burn Fund and the Fort Langley Lions Club.
New this year is the Fort Langley Canada Day Scavenger Hunt, which will send participants to five heritage locations in Fort Langley to answer questions in order to win a prize basket. Locations include the Langley Centennial Museum, BC Farm Museum, Fort Langley National Historic Site, CN Station, and the Fort Langley Library.
The Fort Langley Community Improvement Society and Creative Compass Society (CCS) are also partnering to bring a Canada Day Picnic Celebration to the front lawn of the Fort Langley Community Hall (which will be open for tours).
Organizer Brigitte Seib explained the CCS was created to get the community of Fort Langley more involved with theatre, music, art, and film.
“We will be doing a series of pop up open mics over the summer in Gasoline Alley at the CN Station,” Seib said. “This is our first. I think it will be really low key and a way for us to reach out to the community.”
Local children’s entertainer, Penny PomPom will be debuting on the Open Air stage at 11 am, kicking off the open mic afternoon which is open to all musicians to sign up and perform.
Seib is also the executive director of the Community Hall and said it will be open for tours on Canada Day – a first for the historic structure.
“I don’t know if we’ve ever had tours before,” Seib added, “but we do want to open it up to people.”
The celebration in Fort Langley is expected to wind down around 3 p.m. with the Centennial Museum closing at 4:45 p.m.
The full day of events at Fort Langley National Historic Site include:
10 a.m. – Site opens with citizenship ceremony
10:30 a.m. – Learn Métis jigging with Lisa Shepherd
11 a.m. – Fort Langley 101
11 a.m. – Balloon animals and henna Artist (until 3 p.m.)
11:30 a.m. – Flag raising, O Canada and the serving of the Cake
12 p.m. – Blacksmith demonstration
12:30 p.m. – Bhangra dancing by the Rangla Punjab Arts Academy
1 p.m. – Langley Ukulele Ensemble
1:30 p.m. – Learn Métis jigging with Lisa Shepherd
2 p.m. – Fiddling and dance
2:30 p.m. – Fort Langley game show
3 p.m. – Renaissance fencing demonstration
3:30 p.m. – Fiddling and dance
4 p.m. – Bhangra dancing by the Rangla Punjab Arts Academy
4:30 p.m. – Flag lowering
5 p.m. – Site closes
Is there more to this story?