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Home » Culture

It’s Remembrance Day, and Canadians are wearing poppies

Submitted by on November 11, 2010 – 1:05 amOne Comment

November 11 is Remembrance Day in Canada.

Last year, we blogged about “Why is every­one wear­ing pop­pies?” to explain Canada’s Remembrance Day traditions:

A national pub­lic hol­i­day, Remembrance Day is cel­e­brated at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. It orig­i­nally com­mem­o­rated the end of World War I on November 11, 1918, at 11 am.

Beginning about two weeks before Remembrance Day, you’ll notice many Canadians sport­ing bright red poppy pins on their left lapels.

Every year at the end of October, the Royal Canadian Legion, Canada’s largest vet­er­ans ser­vices orga­ni­za­tion, begins sell­ing pop­pies (by dona­tion) all across the coun­try. Long a sym­bol of remem­brance in other coun­tries, the poppy became Canada’s offi­cial Remembrance Day icon in 1921.

The annual poppy cam­paign is designed to honor the 117,000 Canadian ser­vice peo­ple who have lost their lives in mil­i­tary oper­a­tions around the world. The money raised pro­vides assis­tance to vet­er­ans and their families.

Canadian banks, offices, schools, and many busi­nesses are closed on Remembrance Day.

Here’s a list of events mark­ing the hol­i­day this week across the country.

Read more about Canada’s poppy tra­di­tion in this post from Why Go Canada, “Where Poppies Grow: Remembrance Day in Canada.”

You might also be inter­ested in read­ing about emerg­ing alter­na­tives to the tra­di­tional red poppy; the Globe and Mail wrote about the topic in “Rethinking the poppy in a respect­ful way.”

Poppy photo by That Canadian Grrl (flickr)

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