Quebec’s National Holiday
Happy Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day!
Although Quebec celebrates all of Canada’s national holidays, the province also has its own “Fête Nationale”. This “national holiday,” also known as Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day, is held on June 24 and is part summer solstice celebration and part Quebec pride day.
Saint-Jean-Baptiste (St. John the Baptist) is the patron saint of French Canadians, and the day in his honor takes on a significant flavor of Quebec nationalism. Residents wave Quebec flags and hang banners from their balconies, while free concerts and events highlight traditional Quebecois music and culture.
Quebec essentially shuts down for La Fête — banks, offices, and other services are all closed – so you might as well join in the festivities, even if you don’t speak much French. It’s a fine excuse for a party!
And even if you’re not in Quebec, you may find celebrations in other regions. Tonight in Vancouver, Richard’s on Richards nightclub hosts “Fête de la Saint Jean Baptiste” at 9pm. You can even party in the Yukon at celebrations in Whitehorse and Dawson City.
Photo ©Alan Albert