The debate over how to best handle Canada Day Celebrations this year is having ramifications across the country and Bracebridge is no exception.
Earlier today the Rotary Club of Bracebridge announced they will be rolling back some of their planned Canada Day celebrations in light of feedback they’ve received.
In a press release issued today they announced:
“Members of the Rotary Club of Bracebridge, like all Canadians, have been saddened by the news of the discovery of mass graves of children in association with two of Canada’s many residential schools. We are further disheartened that there are bound to be further such discoveries.
Our planned Canada Day events were intended to bring our community together, however in recent days we have come to discover that some of the celebratory aspects of our plans are instead sowing division within our community and are deemed insensitive by many of our indigenous friends and neighbors.
To address those concerns, we have decided to move forward differently. Our plans to bring celebratory floats through the streets of Bracebridge have been cancelled.
Our Canada Day installations in our Rotary Gardens will remain in place, with the addition of signage to allow visitors to reflect on the legacy of abuses associated with our residential school system; these gardens are a place of peace and reflection, and we invite everyone to visit them and spend some time considering both the positive and negative aspects of our country and its history.
Our home and business decorating contest, initiated in part as an ongoing effort to support our local restaurants, will continue, however we invite all participants to include orange in their display, in solidarity with our indigenous people.
The Rotary Club of Bracebridge has had a long tradition of leading some of our community events around Canada Day, and we look forward to being able to resume such events in future years, when we can all be in a more celebratory mood.
To find out more about the opportunity for all Canadians to make this moment a movement for change, we invite you to look at the resources available here.“
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