I have not gone downtown to celebrate New Year’s Eve for six whole years but decided to join a friend and her family for the early fireworks display at 8:30, what I nick-named the “kids and Grannies hour.” I arrived before they did and went to city Hall which is a real people place and joined hundreds of others as we watched various entertainers indoors.

Beginning the entertainment were the “Yellow Ribbon Dancers” from Paul Band First Nations outside of Edmonton.  This is very fitting after last year’s being the year for Truth and Reconciliation and the public is continually getting educated about  Residencial Schools and Indigenous history and culture. Both the regalia and dancing of these Nakoda Sioux people delighted me.

Outside were stilt walkers dressed as New year spirits, I suppose, and free skate rentals which many took advantage of to go for a skate on the rink in front of City Hall. Winston Churchill Square is a big open area where people gather tonight to eat and drink (non-alcoholic beverages for this family event), buy light  toys and gather to watch the fireworks. There were two fireworks displays  this year due to a big grant from the federal government because it is Canada’s 150th year as a country. This is somewhat humbling because I can remember going to Montreal as a kid with my parents to celebrate 100 years of Confederation in 1967.

I had a good time, sharing the fun with people of many generations and cultures. I wish all my blogger friends a good and peaceful year.

Inside city hall ,  people with their glowsticks sitting on the steps to the city chambers untitled-63-3

front entrance of city hall from insideuntitled-49-2

Yellow Ribbon Dancersuntitled-37-2

Traditional Danceruntitled-39-2

Spritesuntitled-17-2

Good-bye to 2016 and Hello to 2017untitled-30-4

The people in Winston Churchill Squareuntitled-86-2

The Christmas tree in Winston Churchill Squareuntitled-87-2

the fireworks!untitled-144-2

untitled-106-2

My friends , standing behind meuntitled-143-2

Happy New Year! from me to you15844223_10154000044875940_8221522833921046248_o-2

photo by Diane Cherwonka

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10 thoughts on “First Night-A Night and Year of Celebration

    1. There was a woman’s traditional, a woman’s shawl and men’s traditional and fancy dancer. They gave us samples rather than full songs and taught the public the meanings. A friendly crowd, easy to talk to the stranger beside you.

      Liked by 1 person

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