More than 40,000 expected to attend Waterloo’s bigger, better Canada Day

Friday, June 21, 2013

WATERLOO, Ont. (Friday, June 21, 2013) – Canada Day in Waterloo is set to be bigger than ever as the University of Waterloo and Federation of Students unveil new plans to mark the national holiday at the Columbia Lake playing fields.

Top Canadian bands Spirit of the West and Hollerado headline the free event, which will feature performances on the main stage from internationally acclaimed children's singer-songwriter Ronno, a performance of the classic children's book Stellaluna, and Wij the Magician.

“With great artists, improved sound, amazing food and drink, and more, we’ve worked hard to build on the tradition of community celebration here and make it an experience to remember,” said Feridun Hamdullahpur, president and vice-chancellor of Waterloo. “We want to make sure that people know that Waterloo isn’t just a world-class place to study, it’s a place that proudly contributes to our region making it a vibrant place to live, study and work.”

An estimated 40,000 guests are expected to attend the celebration, which will provide an improved stage and sound experience thanks to a new partnership with Palmer Audio. Beyond the main stage, children of all ages can experience hands-on fun including new activities such as golfing with the LPGA and hockey with the Kitchener Rangers.

Favourite attractions such as fireworks, kids’ inflatables and the water slide remain a fixture of the event, which will also feature several new top-notch food vendors including Smoke’s Poutinerie, S.W.A.T. Truck, Papa’s Gourmet Grill and S.O.S BBQ.

For the first time, adults can escape from the heat and enjoy a cold one in the licensed refreshment area, in partnership with the Brick Brewing Company.

“For 28 years, students have welcomed the community to the Columbia Lake fields on Canada Day for a day of celebration,“ said David Collins, president of the Federation of Students. “The Feds and the University really doubled down on their efforts to create an even bigger and better celebration for our community"

To celebrate local talent, Waterloo launched its first-ever national anthem singing competition. Clarissa Diokno, a psychology student and winner of Waterloo’s Campus Idol, submitted the winning entry on YouTube. She will perform O Canada to kick off the fireworks at 10:00 p.m.

The event also features performances by the Warriors band, and appearances by City of Waterloo Mayor Brenda Halloran, Peter Braid, MP, and Region of Waterloo Regional Chair, Ken Seiling.

Visitors to Canada Day at the University of Waterloo will be able to celebrate the experience with friends across Canada thanks to digital activations from the Smile Epidemic who will be on site to help guests share their "true patriot love” as well as a photo booth to share pictures through social media.

All University of Waterloo campus parking lots are available and free of charge on Canada Day. Accessible parking is available off of Frank Tompa Drive within the OpenText parking lot.

Columbia Street West from Westmount Road to Hagey Boulevard will be closed on July 1.

More information about the event can be found on the University of Waterloo website. Social media followers can join in the community spirit on Twitter and Facebook, using the hashtag #uwcanadaday.

About the University of Waterloo

In just half a century, the University of Waterloo, located at the heart of Canada's technology hub, has become one of Canada's leading comprehensive universities with 35,000 full- and part-time students in undergraduate and graduate programs. Waterloo, as home to the world's largest post-secondary co-operative education program, embraces its connections to the world and encourages enterprising partnerships in learning, research and discovery. In the next decade, the university is committed to building a better future for Canada and the world by championing innovation and collaboration to create solutions relevant to the needs of today and tomorrow. For more information about Waterloo, please visit


Tim Jackson, vice-president of university relations, is available for interview today.

Media Contact

Nick Manning
University of Waterloo

Attention broadcasters: Waterloo has facilities to provide broadcast quality audio and video feeds with a double-ender studio. Please contact Nick Manning on 519-888-4451 or 226-929-7627 for more information.

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