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Civic Holiday

Civic Holiday 2019 and 2020

Civic Holiday is celebrated in various ways in the provinces where it is a statutory holiday.

Year Date Day Holiday Provinces and Territories
2019 5 Aug Mon Civic Holiday BC, NB, NU, ON
& SK
2020 3 Aug Mon Civic Holiday BC, NB, NU, ON
& SK

Civic Holiday is a result of Canada’s diverse heritage. In 1974, Civic Day was created by the Minister of Culture in Alberta. Today, Civic Day is celebrated throughout Canada. The holiday is celebrated in accordance to a province’s cultural heritage and history. This makes this Canadian holiday one of the most diverse events of the year.

British Columbia

In British Columbia, Civic Holiday is known simply as B.C. Day. This is a holiday that allows the people of British Columbia to learn about their home’s history. Many people participate in historical tours to observe B.C. Day. Culinary demonstrations are also popular at B.C. Day festivals. Most of the dishes prepared by chefs on this holiday are traditional and use local ingredients. People also have the opportunity to enjoy live music and parades.


The residents of Alberta observe Heritage Day on the first Monday of August. This form of Civic Day celebrates numerous cultures from across the globe. This is a reflection of Alberta’s population; Alberta is one of the most diverse provinces in Canada. People who celebrate this holiday can attend festivals to enjoy food, music, and art from across the world. In addition to international heritage, Heritage Day also allows the people of Alberta to learn about the history of their province. Visiting historical sites is a very popular activity during this holiday. Places like Fort Calgary can become very crowded during peak hours during Heritage Day.

Nova Scotia

One of the most popular Civic Day events is held in Nova Scotia each year. Known to locals as Natal Day, this large festival celebrates the founding of Halifax. With nearly 300 years of history, Natal Day is oriented around historical heritage events. Festival-goers can listen to historical speeches and go on tours of key sites in the area.

There is also a special Natal Day flag that is hoisted to mark the beginning of the holiday. For people who are more interested in festival activities, there are many fun activities for people of all ages. During the day, people can enjoy concerts and plenty of food. Running races are also common. In the evening, festival participants can go to Lake Banook to enjoy an elaborate fireworks show.

Natal Day also has a patron saint known as Alexander Keith. In life, Alexander Keith was a brewer and mayor of Halifax. Alexander Keith has become a symbol of Halifax’s festive spirit. Alexander Keith’s Brewery is still active, and many people go there for tours on Natal Day.


Civic Day in Ontario is not nearly as lively as the holiday in Nova Scotia, but it is still an important event that honours Canadian historical events. In Ontario, Civic Day is called Emancipation Day. Some people refer to Emancipation Day as Simcoe Day. This name is appropriate because Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe declared the Act Against Slavery in Canada. This holiday celebrates the day when the British Empire deemed slavery to be immoral and illegal. On Emancipation Day, people often participate in tours and visit sites of historical importance. Fort York is a very popular destination for people of Ontario on Emancipation Day.

New Brunswick

Instead of honouring culture, the people of New Brunswick use Civic Holiday as a time to celebrate the environment that they live in. Simply known as New Brunswick Day, Civic Holiday in this province is oriented around exhibitions about the area’s natural resources. The holiday also informs the citizens of New Brunswick about the province’s traditional industries and economic strengths. Sporting events and games are also popular during New Brunswick Day.