Canada Day festivities to include Pan Am-themed activities in lead up to arrival of torch relay

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null Canada Day festivities to include Pan Am-themed activities in lead up to arrival of torch relay

June 22, 2015 -

Click here to view event listings

Canada Day programming is planned to continue rain or shine. If there is severe weather, it may impact the events. Cancellations will be announced on the City's Twitter feed and/or Facebook page.

Municipal offices closed Wednesday, July 1. Transit runs on Sunday service.

In anticipation of the arrival of the Pan Am Games Torch Relay on July 2, this year's Canada Day celebrations offer free family-friendly Pan Am-themed activities scheduled at Confederation Park, Fort Henry and Grass Creek Park on Wednesday, July 1.

"Canada Day is an exciting opportunity to celebrate Kingston's unique connection to the founding of our nation with all-day activities at Grass Creek Park and our annual civic ceremony on the front steps of City Hall. This year we also welcome additional free programming in Confederation Park and Fort Henry in anticipation of the Pan Am Games Torch Relay on July 2. I encourage all Kingstonians to join in the celebrations!" says Mayor Bryan Paterson.

(A list of Canada Day closures follows event listings, below.)

Here's what is going on Canada Day:

  • Red & White Parade: Anyone wearing Canadian red and white is welcome to join this parade which departs from the Metro parking lot (at Barrie and Princess streets) at 11:30 a.m. and runs down Princess Street toward City Hall. 

Confederation Park

Across from City Hall, 216 Ontario St., Confederation Park will host downtown Canada Day festivities on Wednesday and offer live music all afternoon. Plan to enjoy:

  • Limestone Mile: Races start at 9 a.m.
  • Citizenship ceremony at 10:30 a.m.
  • Civic ceremony and Mayor's Awards: noon on the steps of City Hall. Mayor Bryan Paterson will preside over the ceremony to mark Canada Day and will congratulate the winners of the First Capital Distinguished and the Mayor's Award for Youth Volunteerism.
  • All-day live entertainment.
  • It's free to get in to the Pump House Steam Museum on Canada Day (open noon to 6 p.m.).
  • The Canada Day festivities in downtown Kingston will culminate in a 10 p.m. spectacular Pan Am-themed fireworks display that can be viewed from Fort Henry or Confederation Park.

Fort Henry

Fort Henry's Pan Am Cultural Festival is free from July 1 to 4. It includes Pan American-themed Canada Day live entertainment on multiple stages starting at 4 p.m.  and a sports zone, a heritage art and culture area and other activities. 

For full details, see Visitors will also enjoy free access to Fort Henry programming during the four-day festival.

Grass Creek Park

Grass Creek Park, 2993 Highway 2 East, is offering live entertainment, face-painting, air castles, games, wagon rides, beach volleyball and lots of other fun for kids from 11 a.m. to  5 p.m. Bring a swimsuit to try the sandy beach. Bring your refillable water bottle and fill up at the Utilities Kingston water buggy.

Don't forget your lawn chair, sunscreen and hat for Grass Creek Park's family-oriented celebrations that include:

  • Pan Am Games sporting demonstrations
  • Kite festival
  • Make your own torch and Kids Torch Relay
  • Live entertainment
  • Kingston BMX and Kingston Aeros Trampoline Club
  • Festivities wrap-up at 5 p.m. with the cutting of the Canada Day cake.
  • Check out the MacLachlan Woodworking Museum at the entrance to the park. It's open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and free on Canada Day.

Canada Day closures (Wednesday, July 1)

Garbage, green bin and recycling: No collection on Wednesday and collection moves to the day after your normal pick-up day for the rest of the week. Sign-up to be reminded what to put out when at The Kingston Area Recycling Centre is also closed July 1.

Kingston Transit: All buses will run on a Sunday schedule on Wednesday – except for Route 18 which runs on a weekday schedule. Plan your bus trip with Google Transit:

Kingston Access Services: Operates with limited service Wednesday. Call 613-542-2512.

Administrative Offices: All administrative offices, including housing and social services and provincial offences are closed Wednesday.

Utilities Kingston and Kingston Hydro: Closed Wednesday. In the event of a utility emergency, such as a gas smell, power outage or a water main break, call the Utilities Kingston 24-hour number at 613-546-1181. Hydro One electricity customers in the west and east ends can call 1-800-434-1235. Union Gas customers can call 1-877-969-0999. Remember: for electricity used on weekends and holidays like Canada Day, electricity prices are off-peak.

Tomlinson Aqua Park, splash pads and wading pools: Splash pads and wading pools are open on Wednesday.  The McBurney Park wading pool opens for the season on July 1. 

INVISTA Centre/ Fitness & Wellness Centre, Artillery Park Aquatic Centre, arenas and CaraCo Home Field: Closed Wednesday.

Libraries: All branches of the Kingston Frontenac Public Library are closed Wednesday.

Portsmouth Olympic Harbour: Open. 

Grand Theatre Box Office: Closed Wednesday.

Kingston Fire & Rescue encourages you to enjoy the public fireworks from Confederation Park and Fort Henry. Lighting your own fireworks can be dangerous. If you choose to do so, follow the safety guidelines at

Plan your bus trip with Google Transit:


July 1

Catch the Pan Am Fever – A Celebration of culture, sport and community!

Grass Creek Park celebrations - 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
On stage at Grass Creek Park – with Master of Ceremonies, Roger James
12:00 p.m. – Purple Dragon Puppet Theatre
1:00 p.m. -  Sonshine and Broccoli
2:00 p.m. – Brockville Steel Drum Band
3:00 p.m. – Mystic Drumz
4:00 p.m. – Little California

Demonstrations - Kingston BMX  and Kingston Aeros Trampoline Club
Activities - Face painting, balloon twisting, bouncy castles, kids crafts, wagon rides,
New This Year!  Kite Festival and Kids Torch Run ( make your own kite)

Food vendors and the Utilities Kingston Water Buggy (bring your own refillable water bottle)

Confederation Park Celebrations – 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

9:00 a.m. – Limestone Mile on Ontario St.
10:30 a.m. – Citizenship Court in Memorial Hall
11:30 a.m. – Red and White Parade of People starts from Metro parking lot, Barrie and Princess Street and ends at City Hall
12 Noon – Civic Ceremony on the steps of City Hall

Guest Speakers

  • Ted Hsu, MP for Kingston and the Islands
  • Sophie Kiwala, MPP, Kingston and the Islands,
  • Bryan Paterson, Mayor, City of Kingston

Presentation of the Mayors Youth Volunteer Awards and First Capital Distinguished Citizens Awards.

2 p.m. to 10 p.m.  - Live entertainment on stage in Confederation Park

  • 12:30 p.m. - The Stares
  • 1:45 p.m. - Fatones
  • 3:00 p.m. - Trevor Walsh
  • 4:15 p.m. - Great Unwashed
  • 5:30 p.m. - The Roosevelts
  • 6:30 p.m. - Kingston Laser World Championships Opening Ceremony
  • 7:15 p.m. - Little California
  • 8:15 p.m. - Kim Pollard Band
  • 9:15 p.m. - Still Standin'

10:00 p.m. - Spectacular ‘Pan Am themed' fireworks display– best viewing from Fort Henry or Confederation Park.

Fort Henry – 4:00pm – 10:30pm
More celebrations taking place at Fort Henry.


July 2

Confederation Park

  • Free Shuttle (8 seat) downtown to Fort Henry starting at Confederation Park at 1 p.m. running until 8:30 p.m. 
  • Downtown pick up/drop off - Lower Brock St. Confederation Park (approximately every half hour starting at 1 p.m.) 
  • Leaves Fort Henry at quarter to and quarter past the hour.
  • 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. - Music in the Park  - Mauricio Montecinos - Latin Music
  • 1:45 p.m. - Introduction to the days activities by MC
  • 2 p.m. - SamBatuKana - Brazilian Samba Band  
  • 3 p.m. - Grupo del Sol - Cuban Music
  • 4 p.m. - Bon Evans Band - Indie
  • 5 p.m. - Big Balade - French
  • 6 p.m. - Eric Voice -  Aboriginal Rock
  • 6:30 p.m. - Whispering Wind Singers and Dancers
  • Dusk - Movie in the Square – Chariots of Fire

12:30 p.m. - 6 p.m. - 5 in 1 inflatable sport centre on site
12:30 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Kingston Gets Active and Loyalist Gymnastics Club host activities for all ages

Pan Am Torch Relay

6 p.m. - Torch Relay starts at Princess and Clergy Streets. There will be stops at Springer Market Square and Sir John A Statue for a photo opportunity.
6:33 p.m. - Torch Arrives at City Hall - Aboriginal welcome - Torch continues on to Fort Henry
7 p.m. - Official Torch Ceremony at Fort Henry  in the Upper Battery

View the Torch Route Map

Fort Henry – 12:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
More celebrations taking place at Fort Henry.


July 3

Fort Henry – 12:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
More celebrations taking place at Fort Henry.

CFB Kingston

  • 12:45-1:40 p.m. - The public is welcome to attend the activities on base at McNaughton Parade Square. Pachi, the Official Pan Am Games Mascot , will be on site at this location. Sambukatan,  Brazilian Samba Band and K Rock Radio provide entertainment. 4 torchbearers (2 from CFB Kingston, 2 from Soldier On), will be carrying the flame at CFB Kingston.
  • 1:45 p.m. - Brief Ceremony and departure of torch. Gather along the route to bid the torch adieu as local runners escort it out of Kingston

Note: parking is limited at this location.

View the Torch Route Map


July 4

Fort Henry – 12:00pm – 10:30pm
More celebrations taking place at Fort Henry.


About the City of Kingston

The City of Kingston provides municipal services to 120,000 residents living in this visually stunning, historic city, often ranked one of the best places to live in Canada. In 2014, it was named a Top 7 Smart Community by the Intelligent Community Forum. Our vision – to become Canada's most sustainable city – focusses our efforts on: environmental responsibility, social equity, economic health and cultural vitality.

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Twitter: @CityofKingston



Media contact: For more information contact Cindie Ashton, communications officer, 613-546-4291, ext. 3116, or call the communications department at 613-546-4291, ext. 2300.