British Columbia or BC is the western province in Canada which is famous for its unique beauty and charming places. Thousands of tourists come here every year to explore the majestic mountains and dreamlike forests, and without a doubt to participate in the activities which are going to be performed on British Columbia statutory holidays in 2017.
A great number of festive events take place in British Columbia. As pointed out below, you can find out which holidays and events in BC are the most widespread among the local population. But keep in mind, it’s not everything!
Official statutory holidays in BC
British Columbia stat holidays in 2017 start with New Year’s Day on January 1. It’s not a secret, that Canadians don’t consider this holiday to be of great importance. They spend it like a regular day, mostly gathering with close people at home.
Good Friday, which is in 2017 on April 14 is a religious holiday when Jesus was offended and convicted to death. Usually, nobody eats meat this day. Families visit the church and remember all the good things of the past year.
Canada Day (July 1) is usually marked with outdoor arrangements. Canadians organize barbecues and picnics, visit free music concerts in the parks and enjoy staying somewhere far from stuffy premises.
Labor Day (September 4) is a great event for all working people, in fact, it is a day of having rest when everyone is enjoying an additional day off.
Christmas Day is the most favorite feast in Canada. People prepare for it already at the end of October, when the shop-windows bewitch the eyes of the customers with their bright Christmas decorations, gifts, street trees are covered with colored lights. People give presents and small treats to beloved ones, and even if you live far away, you will get a gift by post or at least a heartwarming Christmas postcard.
Peculiarities of holiday pay
There is a rule in Labor Code of Canada regarding statutory holiday pay in British Columbia in 2017, which states that in order to receive a payoff on a BC statutory holiday, a person has to work for no less than 30 days before the high day and earn the salary for 15 days.
In case a person gets a day off on a public holiday, or whether it is a usual day off, he is eligible for being paid off an average day’s pay. On the contrary, if it’s his usual working day he should be paid for the first 12 hours, and the extra payoff should be given for additional hours.
Holidays of special status in BC
Canada abounds in people of different nationalities That’s why Canadians welcome Chinese, Russian, Italian, Ukrainian, and even Japanese holidays. Besides statutory holidays, every province has got its own unique festivals, which are identified as provincial statutory holidays. Among them, we find Family Day, Victoria Day, British Columbia Day, Thanksgiving and Remembrance Day.
Family Day (February 13) was established to remind of the warmth of the family hearth and to encourage adults to spend more free time with their kids. Different exhibitions and competitions for parents and children take place in the parks. Usually, this day museums are free of charge. The weather in February is cold and the best treat outside is hot chocolate and freshly baked cookies.
Victoria Day is observed in 2017 on May 22, established to commemorate the Queen Victoria’s birthday, who turned out to be a significant figure in the history of Canada. People call it “Long May Weekend” and it stands for the farewell with winter and greeting the warm season.
There is also a civic holiday, or the so-called the “August Holiday”- British Columbia Day designed for people to be proud of the history and culture achievements. British Columbia Day is a civic holiday of BC, falling on the first Monday in August, giving Canadians the possibility to remember their national accomplishments and to have their fling with friends and family, in other words, to fully enjoy their free time. People try to escape from daily routines and go camping, hiking, make canoe trips and fishing, which is very popular in British Columbia. By the way, fishing is very famous here. The region is rich in unique species of fish, which makes British Columbia, precisely to say its Fraser River, be recognized internationally as one of the top fishing destinations in the world.
Thanksgiving this year is on October 9, when people tender to thank each other. On this day many Canadian families, including all the relatives, gather together and to taste a roast turkey dinner, with sweet potatoes usually accompanied with the homemade cranberry sauce and delicious pumpkin pie. It’s also a charity day for most of Canadians.
Remembrance Day is on November 11 and recognized as another statutory holiday in Canada. It’s the observance when members of the military forces are honored. With the purpose of expressing the respect and mourning for the victims of terrible events in Canada, the local residents pin red poppies on their jackets and blouses before and on Remembrance Day. The flying of flags takes place on the commemoration day. Sometimes church bells ring in memory of the soldiers.
Along with the statutory holidays in British Columbia, there are unofficial events and celebrations as well, which attract people all around the world. One of them is International Jazz Festival. It takes place in Vancouver, starts usually on the third Friday of June and lasts around 10 days. Here you will have a chance to hear well-known jazz singers in all parts of Vancouver.
Another famous festival in the province of British Columbia is Dragon Boat Festival, which is observed in the third weekend of June and includes boat racing across the False river. Almost 2,000 participants from different corners of the world come here to take part in the festival. Besides the boat racing, many interesting things take place as well. For example, trade fair, where you can buy beautiful handmade souvenirs, taste a delicious street food and have a nice chilled drink.
Each province in Canada differs from each other not only in its beauty and location, but also in its holiday traditions and events. British Columbia is very popular among the tourists, they come here not only by air but also by cruise boats. If you have a chance to visit BC one day, don’t miss the most famous firework festival, which takes place there annually and you will never regret.