Canadians Celebrate Victoria Day on May 22

Queen Victoria: The First Sovereign of a Confederated Canada

In Canada, everyone knows about the May long weekend. But how many of us really know the reason we celebrate Victoria Day? It’s Queen Victoria’s birthday! She was the Queen of England at the time of Canadian Confederation, which took place on July 1, 1867 — 150 years ago!

On this important day in history, Canadians across the country celebrate with parades and public events, most notably in the Queen’s namesake city of Victoria, BC. The Victoria Day Parade is the biggest and best parade of the year in BC’s capital city, featuring 150 entries including, musical floats, marching bands, and reflecting cultural pride.


Sewn Union Jack and Norwegian flag used as a backdrop display at the Royal BC Museum. Made by The Flag Shop Victoria.

Large Union Jack made by The Flag Shop Edmonton
Large 9’x18′ Union Jack and Canadian flag made by The Flag Shop Edmonton – They were used for the funeral procession for Cst. Daniel Woodall, who was killed in the line of duty in 2015.

Declared as a Canadian holiday in 1845, Victoria Day was typically celebrated with fireworks, cannon and gun salutes, and parades. When Queen Victoria died in 1901, Canada’s parliament officially named the holiday Victoria Day. In Quebec, a celebration called La Journée nationale des patriotes takes place on the same day.

According to Canada’s government protocol, on Victoria Day, the Royal Union Flag, more commonly known as the Union Jack, is to be flown at all federal government buildings. This includes crown corporations, military bases and airports.

The Union Jack was first proclaimed by James I in 1606, when he ascended the thrones of both England and Scotland. He pursued the creation of a flag which combined the two crosses of each nation. Then, in 1801, when Ireland joined the United Kingdom, the Cross of St Patrick was added. The Union Jack that we know today consists of three flags: England’s, Scotland’s and Ireland’s. This is the history of the Royal Union Flag.

The Flag Shop has always carried an extensive assortment of Union Jack products. We are proud to supply Canadians across the country celebrating Victoria Day, which is fondly and unofficially known as the beginning of “summer fun.”

If you are planning to attend a Victoria Day event, don’t forget your flag!

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