Bonne St-Jean Baptiste!!

national_aboriginal_day_aptnWhat does this weekend represent to us Canadians?  Hmm, well last night I watched on APTN, National Aboriginal Day and the talent was outstanding!  So many different genres of music! It was moving, touching and entertaining and as a festival should be…fun!  What a great day to celebrate Summer Solstice and the fact that it was my mother’s birthday as well made it all worthy of such celebrations.

This weekend represents for the end of the school year for students up to and including High School in Quebec…other provinces across Canada may be a few more days still.

My son, a high school teacher, can now look forward to some R & R and much needed rest.  Why? Because teaching is NOT easy plus he travels so much to and from school…crossing 2 bridges one way only!

st-jean-baptistes-dayWhat else is happening this weekend…our National holiday for people residing  in Quebec…June 24th, is Saint Jean Baptiste Day…La fête nationale du Québec .

It is a celebration of Francophone identity, culture and history. On this day,  it is customary to wish  Quebecois  and French Canadian people, Bonne St-Jean!

In many towns and cities across Quebec, St-Jean Baptiste Day  used to be celebrated with parades and floats. I remember in my small town the same boy for 3 years was on the float posing as St Jean Baptiste with his blonde curly locks.   There was dancing in the streets, a fair for everyone to have fun and ended the evening with a huge bonfire and then  fireworks…I loved St-Jean Baptiste Day as a child.

photo_985266_resizeIt is still widely celebrated and there are huge concerts with celebrities in major cities in the 13province who perform.  A nice occasion to sit by a bonfire with friends and family, play guitar and sing along…it is connecting with folks…period. I used to love to sit by the bonfire at our camping when the children were younger and we gather to look with awe at the fireworks a few campers set off near the pier by the lake.

downloadThe traditional bonfire celebrating Summer Solstice (Midsummer)  on June 23rd  in various countries around the world, aboriginal-language-canadacontinues in Quebec joined with the celebration of St. Jean Baptiste. 

I find it to be a grand family celebration especially…who does not like a fair type day?  Who does not like fireworks?  It is a time to promote la Joie de Vive we, Quebecois are known for…live and let live.

Bonne St- Jean!