Happy 20th Birthday, Nunavut!

Canada’s Largest Territory Turns 20 on April 1st, 2019!

As proclaimed 20 years ago, on April 1st, 1999, Nunavut (an Inuit word meaning “our land”) became the newest territory in Arctic Canada. As part of the largest land claims settlement in our nation’s history, this monumental event gave the Nunavummiut – which means “the people of Nunavut” – control over the eastern portion of what was formerly the Northwest Territories. Nunavut spans 350,000 square kilometres, and brought about the first change to the map of Canada since Newfoundland joined Confederation 50 years earlier, on March 31st, 1949.

20th Anniversary Calls for Something Special
We think Nunavut’s 20th anniversary is a big deal, and it so happens that the Royal Canadian Mint does too! In celebration of Nunavut, the mint produced its first-ever coin minted of 99.99% pure Nunavut gold! The commemorative coin was designed by Inuk artist, Andrew Qappik, of Pangnirtung and reflects beautiful Nunavut wildlife, such as the ptarmigan, the walrus and the bowhead whale – all of which are outlined by a maple leaf. [1]

The Flag Tells Its Own Story
With the proclamation of the territory, the official flag of Nunavut was also proclaimed. The Inuksuk at the centre of the flag represents the stone structures, deeply rooted in Inuit culture, and made by people on the land. They are used for marking sacred or other locations, such as fishing or hunting spots. The colours of yellow and blue represent the richness of the sea, land and sky, while the red reflects Canada. The blue star, known as Niqirtsuituq or North Star, is the traditional guide for navigation and also serves to honour the leadership role of the elders in the community.[2]

Seven Interesting Facts about Nunavut [3][4]
1.  Iqaluit is the capital of Nunavut, Canada’s smallest capital city, with a population of 7,082.[5]
2.  In June, Iqaluit has nearly 24 hours of daylight and in December, only about six hours.

3.  Traditional Inuit foods, called “Country Food” include arctic char, whale meat and seal meat.
4.  Mining industries includes diamonds, sliver, gold, copper, zinc, oil and gas.
5.  Languages most commonly spoken include Inuktitut, French and English.
6.  Jordin Tootoo, who played hockey on various NHL teams, was raised in Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.

7.  Most roads are not paved and Stop signs are in English and Inuktitut.

Hey Newfoundland! Happy Ever-So-Slightly Belated 70th!
If you’re wondering what we mean by “ever-so-slightly”, it was on March 31st, 1949, at one minute before midnight, that Newfoundland and Labrador, joined Confederation with Canada. Before then, Newfoundland was its own independent nation. Happy septuagenarian (that’s fancy talk for 70th birthday) to Canada’s 10th and youngest province!

The Flag Shop is here to help you celebrate your province or territory! We’ve got everything you need in flags, but did you know, there’s a lot more to us than flags? To take a closer look at our provincial and territorial offerings, including flags, lanyards, windsocks, decals and more, please visit: http://shop.flagshop.com/index.php/canada-flags/provincial-territory-flags.html

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[1] Royal Canadian Mint
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Nunavut
[3] http://www.softschools.com/facts/canada/nunavut_facts/2813/
[4] https://kids.kiddle.co/Nunavut
[5] Census Profile, 2016 Census

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