Photo: Tim Forbes
Below is the text of Mayor Paterson's Welcome on the front steps of City Hall on January 11, 2015.
Thank you Elders and through you, thank you to all our Aboriginal brothers and sisters for their example and their sharing with us a proud history and culture that inspires and informs all Kingstonians, and all Canadians.
And thank you to everyone for braving the weather to join us today on this, Sir John A.’s Bicentennial day!
Who else but Canadians would meet outside in January for a party!
But in all seriousness, for me as a Kingstonian, as Mayor of Kingston, and most importantly, as a very proud Canadian it is a high honour – perhaps the highest I have ever received – to stand here today, on the steps of this historic building, on Macdonald of Kingston’s bicentennial day.
Et au coeur de ce peuple, notre ville, Kingston, d’où un homme a émergé pour fonder une grande nation.
From this, our very own city, Kingston, a man went out and founded a great nation. From what were only four provinces in 1867, Sir John A.’s Canada now stretches proudly from sea-to-sea-to-shining-sea.
En commémorant cette journée particulière de Sir John A. Macdonald de Kingston, nous célébrons en fait quelque chose d’encore plus important : Nous célébrons le Canada.
So in celebrating Macdonald of Kingston’s special day, we actually celebrate something even more important: We celebrate Canada itself.
And if there is one message that Sir John A. continues to call to us from history’s pages, it is this: His legacy reminds us that nation building, and community building is never complete. It is our duty, as heirs to the country and city Sir John A. so profoundly impacted, to continue the building and bridging Macdonald started.
And if we do so, as we will, Kingstonians and all Canadians will live up to what he promised for us.
In his words: “One people, one in necessity, one in business, one in trade, one in prosperity, and one in our prospects for the future.”
So with those words to guide us still, it is my happy duty to invite everyone inside City Hall for the birthday party of the century.
Heureux 200e anniversaire Sir John A.!
Happy 200th Sir John A.!
Thank you very much. Merci.
Photo: Tim Forbes