Tens of thousands attend Laval’s Fête nationale festivities 2016

City pulls out all the stops for celebration of cultural identity

Martin C. Barry

Laval’s Centre de la Nature was transformed into a wonderland of activities and events on June 24 as the city pulled out all the stops to mark Quebec’s Fête nationale holiday.

While smaller gatherings were also held in many neighbourhoods of Laval throughout the day, municipal officials held a special ceremony at Laval city hall during the afternoon for the raising of the Fleurdelisé flag, followed by a reception.

A Fête nationale concert that evening at the Centre de la Nature was attended by tens of thousands of people.

Fête nationale festivities 2016
Laval’s mayor, city councillors, MPs and MNAs are seen here outside Laval city hall on the Fête nationale last week.

Heritage important: El-Khoury

“This truly is a day to feel proud to be participating and recognizing the importance of this yearly event which is part of our heritage,” said Laval-Les Îles Liberal MP Fayçal El-Khoury who was among the many dignitaries who turned up at the Centre de la Nature as well as at city hall later.

Fête nationale festivities 2016
Laval mayor Marc Demers and Mille-Îles Liberal MNA Francine Charbonneau raise the Quebec flag outside city hall on June 24.

“I encouraged my staff and family and constituents to come out and participate and we will all be taking part here all day,” he added.

Delivering the keynote address during the morning at the Centre de la Nature, Michel Leduc, president of the organizing committee for Fête nationale festivities in Laval, said the Quebec of today is a place of “diversity, solidarity, generosity.

The Quebec of today

“The Quebec of today is also about the environment, sustainable development, the preservation of green spaces,” he continued. “It’s also a place of innovative businesses, of workers who work daily for the well-being of the population.”

Fête nationale festivities 2016
From the left, Laval executive-committee David De Cotis, Roxane Bourget and St-Vincent-de-Paul city councillor Paolo Galati show their pride for the Fleudelisé at Laval’s Centre de la Nature during Fête nationale festivities.
Fête nationale festivities 2016
At the Centre de la Nature, there was fun for the whole family all day.

After being introduced by Vimy Liberal MP Eva Nassif, Alfred-Pellan Liberal MP Angelo Iacono read out a statement Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had written for the Laval Fête nationale celebration. “On this day we celebrate the rich history of Quebec, our heritage as well as our language,” the Prime Minister said.

“St-Jean-Baptiste is also a celebration of the French culture from one ocean to another,” he added, “a day during which we pay homage to Francophone Canadian women and men in all the provinces and all the territories who are an essential pillar of our country.”



Fête nationale festivities 2016
Some chose to celebrate the Fête nationale with flair at the Centre de la Nature with flair.
Fête nationale festivities 2016
What could be more Québécois on Fête nationale day than a steaming smoked meat?

Fête nationale festivities 9

Fête nationale festivities 2016