Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Brockville, Birthplace of the Canadian flag, celebrates July 1

On Monday July 1st, Canada Day, our country’s Maple Leaf will rule Brockville’s skyline following a 3 pm ceremony commemorating the birthplace of the Canadian flag. Following all the activities and hoping to attend will be former resident John Ross Matheson. Now 95 years old, Matheson is considered by many as the father of our flag.

The event will mark the kickoff to the “Fly More Flags” campaign, a fundraising effort aimed at encouraging local businesses to fly a Canadian flag, spearheaded by the local “50 Years of Our Flag” committee.

Brockville’s 120 foot commemorative flag pole has been made possible by the generosity of Mitchell Goldhar and SmartCentres, as part of the company’s own ongoing commitment to install more Canadian flags on its properties across the country.  It also represents one of a series of initiatives leading up to the 50th anniversary of the Canadian flag on February 15, 2015 aimed at bringing awareness to all Canadians about the effort undertaken by many individuals over more than 100 years to bring Canada its distinctive National Flag.

 The base of the pole is 55 cubic metres of concrete weighing 290,400 pounds. The 20 by 40 foot flag will not move... The flag is 2296 feet from the study where John Ross Matheson did much of the background work and study for the flag and Flag Committee. The flag is even closer to Toniata School on the eastern edge of the image where I was going to school at the time of the Great Flag Debate.

In September the flag pole will be raised to 160 feet and fly a 35x70 foot flag. An electric winch is required top raise and lower a flag this large. This flag will be the largest on the Macdonald–Cartier Freeway and visible for miles! I forecast that there will be enough breeze to keep it unfurled. The flag will certainly be a sight!

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