July 1, 2020 marked the 153rd Canada Day and probably the most unconventional way we have celebrated it.

In light of COVID-19, the annual big celebrations were either cancelled or shifted to virtual celebrations.

At the Forks, where 30,000-40,000 people gather during Canada Day, shows and on-site fireworks were cancelled. It was a steady early afternoon when the Filipino Journal visited, with significantly less people just hanging out and enjoying the favorable weather.

The Fernandez family was among the Winnipeggers who decided to spend the day, go for a walk and eat breakfast at the Forks. And in keeping the spirit of the celebration, they wore matching shirts and an accessory that they never wore on Canada Day…facial masks!

“Nakakapanibago. We’re not used to this but it’s okay. We hope this will be over soon,”
said Serafin Fernandez.

Aside from the Forks, events at Assiniboine and Osborne Village were also cancelled in response to COVID- 19 pandemic and public health orders. Even the Tyndall Park Celebration where many kababayans go for Canada Day was postponed to 2021.

While many opted to gather at home with families, a lot also came out to enjoy the good weather – either for a picnic, a drive or a stroll.

What this pandemic might have also taught many is how to be creative in celebrating special occasions while battling the spread of a virus…just like how many commemorated Canada Day!

“Canada is an amazing place to call home, and its people make it even better. We’re always there for each other – in good times and bad – and we always will be. And that’s worth celebrating.”
— Prime Minister Justine Trudeau

Photos by: Ron Cantiveros