CSL inaugurates Shalom Bloom Sculpture garden

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On hand for all of the events celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday were Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and the entire Côte St. Luc council, Mount Royal MP Anthony Housefather and D’Arcy McGee MNA David Birnbaum. The chairs of the Canada Day event were councillors Glenn Nashen and Ruth Kovac, and the MC for the events were CJAD personalities Dan Laxer and Laurie Betito.

The Shalom Bloom Sculpture Garden is in an area of the park with stunning, lifelike sculptures of various wildlife animals, including white-tailed deer, cougar, bighorned sheep and others. The sculptures were a donation by Bloom, who left his successful business in 1980 to devote himself full time to sculpting.

“This city is a wonderful place and the two mayors (Brownstein and his predecessor Housefather) really worked hard to bring this about,” Bloom said at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the garden. “This is Phase 1, and hopefully, eventually, we’ll have another phase with a lot more sculptures in this magnificent park.”

Marco Pendenza of Super Excavation did the stonework, and Ron Williams was the consulting landscape architect.

“I was involved with the overall concept and design,” Williams said. “The early ideas were a natural environment where the animals would feel at home. It turned out great, I’m really pleased.”

Snowdon Councillor Marvin Rotrand also praised Bloom during the unveiling ceremony.

Later on, Birnbaum showed the winning videos of his riding-wide student competition, Canada 150: Your Story, My Story; and Lt-Gen. (Ret’d) Roméo Dallaire was inducted onto Côte St. Luc’s Human Rights Walkway for his work in preventing mass atrocities in Rwanda, his advocacy against the use of child soldiers and his general work for human rights. Dallaire’s son Willem was on hand for the dedication.

While most activities took place on July 2 because of weather concerns, the traditional citizenship ceremony, took place July 1 at the city’s Aquatic and Community Centre, and was presided over by former Canadian citizenship judge Barbara Seal. She, Brownstein, Housefather and Birnbaum welcomed the 39 new citizens from 18 countries. A “welcome home to Canada” video from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was also played.

The July 2 event also included entertainment by indigenous performers and the retro band Replay, who alternated between Beatles and ‘60s hits sets. Brownstein himself sang John Lennon’s Imagine, which he linked to Côte St. Luc’s own advocacy for tolerance and respect.

The evening ended with a fireworks and laser show display, with musical accompaniment.

Côte-St-Luc to mark Canada’s 150th by planting 150 trees

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From right: Côte-St-Luc Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, councillor Dida Berku and arborist Laurence Cloutier-Boucher at Pierre Elliot Trudeau Park in Côte-St-Luc, where 150 trees will be planted in honour of Canada's 150th birthday. In the last 10 years, 1,800 out of 10,000 city trees in Côte-St-Luc were felled due to disease and the push is on by the city to replant.
From right: Côte-St-Luc Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, councillor Dida Berku and arborist Laurence Cloutier-Boucher at Pierre Elliot Trudeau Park in Côte-St-Luc, where 150 trees will be planted in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday. In the last 10 years, 1,800 out of 10,000 city trees in Côte-St-Luc were felled due to disease and the push is on by the city to replant. JOHN MAHONEY / MONTREAL GAZETTE

Côte-St-Luc is planting 150 citizen-sponsored trees in its newly renovated Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park to mark Canada’s 150th birthday.

Resident Rhoda Albert caught wind of this initiative during a recent city council meeting and was the first one down at city hall, sponsoring a tree for $150 in honour of her late mother, Masza Safran.

In return, Safran’s name will go on a plaque that will be displayed in the park. Corporate donors, for $500, can also get a name on the plaque.

“I think it’s a great idea and, you know, whoever I mention it to is very interested,” Albert said. “The reason I did it is because my mother loved plants. She loved trees. She loved parks and I thought it would be a great thing to do for my mother.”

Councillor Dida Berku, who spearheaded the project, said this isn’t about collecting donations for trees that only cost about $300 each to plant. Instead, it’s about citizen engagement in a time when trees are needed in the city and the nation’s milestone birthday is being celebrated.

There will be a kiosk set up during the city’s Canada Day celebrations in the park Sunday (postponed by Saturday’s rain forecast), encouraging people to participate in the reforestation of a city that has been hit hard in recent years by the emerald ash borer beetle and Dutch elm disease. Arborist Laurence Cloutier-Boucher was hired by the city two years ago to boost the battle against diseased and dying trees. In the last 10 years, 1,800 out of 10,000 city trees were felled due to disease.

A variety of indigenous trees are to be planted, including maple, birch, willow, evergreens and fruit trees. The trees will be of varying levels of maturity, Berku said. As they grow, citizens will be reminded of the larger reforestation effort that is costing the city about $60,000 a year to run. Over the last couple of years, the city has planted about 200 trees annually, but these 150 are in addition to that yearly average.

“We’ve planted over 400 trees in the last three years and the plan is to plant at least 200 trees a year as well as educate the public as to the importance of a tree canopy and why we have to replenish it,” Berku said. Trees provide a habitat for wildlife, she added, and “it’s what makes our city beautiful. They’re a natural air filter.”

Public works director Beatrice Newman said a shady tree in front of a home can cut air conditioning costs by 20 per cent. Protecting public trees is a priority, she said, to the point that, as city hall renovations continue, contractors were brought in with special equipment to scoop up and relocate mature trees.

“If you don’t have trees, you don’t have a proper city that meets the needs of the community,” said Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, noting that the 150 trees will be growing in a fully revamped Trudeau Park. Renovated at a cost of $2.6 million, the park officially reopens Sunday and will boast several new features, including 10 wildlife sculptures by Canadian artist Shalom Bloom, play areas, water games, pathways and lighting.

Looking forward 50 years, Brownstein added: “For Canada’s 200th, imagine how big the trees will be.”

CSL Trudeau Park overflows with Canada D’Eh pride

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Was I really in Cote Saint-Luc last night? Where else can one find a culturally diverse entertainment line-up, a homage to world-class leaders and artists, a gastronomical cornucopia, and a children’s wonderland all topped off by a spectacular fireworks and laser show in your own back-yard?

Beatles cover band Replay belts out classic 60s tunes at Canada Day 2017


The end of a beautiful rainbow: right here in CSL


The Buffalo Hat Dancers belted out traditional aboriginal chants, danced up a storm (literally) at Canada Day 2017. The rain started falling during their dance and ended when they were finished? Miracle? Maybe not.


Crowds were a plenty at Canada Day 2017


As co-chair of the event along with Councillor Ruth Kovac I was proud to add words of reconciliation during my address to the crowd in stating we were on the traditional territory of the Iroquois Nation. Ruth added native greetings as well.

The City of Cote Saint-Luc Council and Staff put on a show worthy of Canada’s Sesquicentennial. If you missed it here are some highlights:

The extraordinary, world-class Shalom Bloom Sculpture Garden is unveiled in Trudeau Park


The newly inaugurated Shalom Bloom Sculpture Garden can be enjoyed during a leisurely stroll through the park


Canada Day 2017 Fireworks and laser light show was spectacular

I must take this opportunity to give a shout out to the vCOP (volunteer Citizens on Patrol) squad, celebrating 11 years of invaluable service to our fine community. I launched this service with a dozen residents (most of whom are still going strong) and we’ve since grown to 92 amazing volunteers.

My vCOP team celebrates 11 years at Canada Day 2017. Assistant Supervisor for Events, Susie Schwartz, in black, took care of all coordination.


vCOP Supervisor Mitchell Herf patrols the park at Canada Day 2017 on electric scooter


Security and safety were top of mind last night and CSL EMS (Emergency Measures Services) and Public Security in conjunction with Police were out in full force ensuring that everyone felt safe and secure while enjoying the many varied activities and delights.

The volunteers from EMS are always full of pride in service to our community at Canada Day 2017


CSL Public Security was out in full force, under the watchful eye of Lt. Anthony Tsakon (left). Longtime patroller Scott Hunt joins me in this snapshot at Canada Day 2017


The Station 9 crew is back in blue, Celebrating Canada Day 2017 with our local police officers


Public Safety Director Jordy Reichson walks the beat with the new EMS mascot at Canada Day 2017


Public Security Agent Erwin Luden stands on guard for thee at Canada Day 2017


How fortunate we are to live in a vibrant community and a world-class metropolitan city all in a tolerant and generous country. Our residents seemed to share the same sentiment.


Such a lovely family: The Ullmans enjoy the festivities at Canada Day 2017


Food trucks abound at Canada Day 2017. From cheese treats to loads of lobster and everything in between. My wife, Judy Hagshi, prefers a good cheese (but where’s the wine?) at Canada Day 2017


Library Director Janine West and volunteer Carol Mindel join me at the CSL Historical Society booth. Old photos were on display. Volunteers and vintage pics are wanted!


MP Anthony Housefather had us chanting out C-A-N-A-D-A like our country was a Rockstar. Well, in that case I am a huge fan!

Jeff and Cheryl Nashen with their favourite MP, Anthony Housefather. Canada Day 2017


An honour to meet Wilem Dalaire, son of Canadian hero Lt. General Romeo Dalaire at Canada Day 2017



Wonderful, dedicated emcees Laurie Betito and Dan Laxer of CJAD 800


Ruth Kovac and I co-chaired this year’s Canada Day 2017 festivities in Cote Saint-Luc. Ruth, a Dutch immigrant, epitomizes the proud Canadian, and literally wears her Maple Leaf on her sleeve, and displays the Red an White all year long.

Judging from the smiles and cheers and the general good mod of the crowds pouring out of the park late at night a good time was had in celebrating Canada Day 150 in Cote Saint-Luc. Thank you to all the wonderful city staff headed by Nadia di Furia, Jonathan Shecter, Cornelia Ziga and Bebe Newman. Thanks as well to Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and Councillor Ruth Kovac for their leadership.


See all the photos and videos here.

See Councillor Mike Cohen’s blog here.



NFB Anthem: Canada 150

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Happy Canada 150

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Raffi sings C-A-N-A-D-A

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Canada In My Pocket

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Happy Birthday Bonne Fete Canada

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Canada Day Flashback: Expo 67

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A guten geburdstug Kaneda

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New wildlife sculpture garden and plaque honouring Lt. Gen. Roméo Dallaire mark Canada 150 celebrations in Côte Saint-Luc

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Newly-renovated Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park is home to Côte Saint-Luc’s celebration of the 150th anniversary of Canada on July 1, as the city honours the Canadian general who saved tens of thousands people, unveils a one-of-a-kind wildlife sculpture garden, and plays host to thousands of residents and visitors.
“We’re putting the finishing touches on our renovation of Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park and our Canada Day celebration will be the first of many memorable events at the park over the coming years,” Mayor Mitchell Brownstein said. “We’ll be joining thousands of communities across the country on July 1 in marking the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation.”
The main Canada Day event begins at 4pm at Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park (6975 Mackle Rd.) with the official unveiling of the Shalom Bloom Sculpture Garden.
“Ten life-size bronze sculptures of wildlife animals were donated to the city by Canadian artist Shalom Bloom, who lives in Côte Saint-Luc,” Councillor Ruth Kovac said.
Canada Day staples such as live music, inflatables, a petting zoo, a pony carousel, a caricaturist, a photo booth, and food trucks will be open from 4pm onwards.
The Canadian citizenship ceremony takes place at 5pm at the Aquatic and Community Centre at 5794 Parkhaven Ave.
“At 9:30pm, Côte Saint-Luc will unveil a plaque on its Human Rights Walkway for Lieutenant-General Roméo Dallaire (Ret’d), who is a celebrated advocate for human rights, especially in regards to child soldiers, veterans, and the prevention of mass atrocities,” Councillor Glenn J. Nashen said. “In 1994, Gen. Dallaire disobeyed a command to withdraw UN forces from Rwanda and remained to fulfill the ethical obligation to protect those who sought refuge. More than 32,000 people were directly saved by Gen. Dallaire’s actions.”
Mayor Brownstein will kickoff the fireworks and laser light show at 9:45pm.
The masters of ceremony for the event will be Dan Laxer and Laurie Betito of CJAD 800. The event co-chairs are Councillors Kovac and and Nashen.
A boat and airplane exhibit takes place from 10am to 1pm at the park.
In the event of rain, the unveiling of the Human Rights Walkway plaque will take place at the Aquatic and Community Centre, following the 5pm Canadian citizenship ceremony. Activities will take place under the roof of the Confederation Annex at Pierre Trudeau Park. The fireworks will be postponed until July 2 at 9:45pm. The Shalom Bloom Sculpture Garden unveiling will be moved to July 13 at 6:30pm.

Waving the flag in CSL

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Rain or shine the party must go on. And so it did under threatening skies for the 2015 Canada Day celebrations in Cote Saint-Luc. And what a fun time it was.

The Incredible Boris takes the stage in Trudeau Park

The Incredible Boris takes the stage in Trudeau Park

We started off with the annual Citizenship Ceremony. Always a moving and emotional experience, expertly presided over by the compassionate Judge Barbara Seal, 38 new citizens from nine countries were sworn in. Smiles were ear to ear as these new Canadians, many of them young children, took the Oath of Citizenship, as did a few of us life-long Canadians as well. With a decorated Mountie by her side the judge welcomed all to the Canadian Family, stating, “You came here today as Permanent Residents but you leave as full Canadian Citizens,” to loud applause.

Canada's newest, and youngest, immigrants

Canada’s newest, and youngest, immigrants

2015-07-01 Canada Day in CSL 2015 012 2015-07-01 Canada Day in CSL 2015 015 2015-07-01 Canada Day in CSL 2015 017

Mayor Anthony Housefather addressed the crowd and with great pride wishing them well in their new home and encouraging them all to soak in this magnificent country. Councillor Mitchell Brownstein, an immigration lawyer, recounted the voyage of his great-grandparents in coming to Canada from Eastern Europe in the early 20th Century.

MNA David Birnbaum, MP Irwin Cotler and Mayor Anthony Housefather welcome the new citizens to CSL, Quebec and Canada

MNA David Birnbaum, MP Irwin Cotler and Mayor Anthony Housefather welcome the new citizens to CSL, Quebec and Canada

Meanwhile families gathered in the covered area known as Confederation Annex for kid-friendly activities, food and exhibits. The stage was all set for the main performances. Global TV hosts Camille Ross, Jess Laventure and Elysia Bryan-Baynes emceed the evening and introduced Beatles cover band, Replay. They took to the stage and performed four incredible sets throughout the evening, wowing the crowd as if they were the real Fab Four. All the classic Beatles tunes were sung and the crowd, which grew in  numbers throughout the evening, sang along.

Up next was The Incredible Boris, renowned hypnotist-comedian who invited up audience members to fall under his spell. Four participants remained “under” for the duration of his show including the giggling Councillor Dida Berku. Boris had them dancing the Congo-line, counting their “eleven fingers”, trying desperately to remember their own names, paddling down the Colorado River and over Niagara Falls, speaking foreign languages and many more zany antics that kept the audience laughing out loud.

Councillors Ruth Kovac, Sam Goldbloom and Dida Berku accept the invitation to be hynotized

Councillors Ruth Kovac, Sam Goldbloom and Dida Berku accept the invitation to be hypnotized

Only Cllr. Dida Berku remined under hypnosis, chuckling throughout the show, as ordered by The Incredible Boris

Only Cllr. Dida Berku remined under hypnosis, chuckling throughout the show, as ordered by The Incredible Boris

Retiring Member of Parliament, Professor Irwin Cotler, was inducted onto Cote Saint-Luc’s Human Rights Walkway and Public Security Agent Johnny “Elvis” Champagne was congratulated on his 35 years of service to our community as his badge was officially retired and presented to him.

35 year veteran of CSL, Public Security Agent Jean-Noel "Elvis" Champagne, accepts his encased badge upon his retirement

35 year veteran of CSL, Public Security Agent Jean-Noel “Elvis” Champagne, accepts his encased badge upon his retirement

As always the festivities culminated in the traditional fireworks display, this year twinned with a spectacular laser light show.

Thanks go out to Recreation Director David Taveroff and his talented team for championing a sensational evening of fun and celebration along with the Public Works crews, Public Security agents and Station 9 police officers. Kudos as well to our talented Communications staff under Darryl Levine and many, many thanks to all of our die-hard volunteers, especially those from vCOP and EMS, who go above and beyond in helping our staff to create the best events and in keeping everyone safe. Special thanks to my co-chair of Canada Day 2015 in Cote Saint-Luc, the indefatigable Mike Cohen.

Happy 148th Birthday!

Fireworks and laser light show capped a fantastic evening in CSL

Fireworks and laser light show capped a fantastic evening in CSL

More on Mike Cohen’s blog

Happy Canada Day | Bonne fete du Canada

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Celebrate Canada Day in CSL

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Join the crowd in Cote Saint-Luc as we celebrate Canada’s 148th birthday. There will be tremendous entertainment: fun for young kids, music for teens and adults, food and fireworks.

A special tribute will be bestowed upon outgoing Member of Parliament Irwin Cotler. A Citizenship Court Ceremony will welcome in new Canadian and is a wonderful experience open to the public.

You won’t want to miss the performance by world renowned hynotist-comedian The Incredible Boris at 7:20 pm. You could even be invited up to be hypnotized in front of friends and family.

Check the full schedule here as well as last-minute information in case of rain.

Happy Canada Day. Bonne fête du Canada.

Canada Day in CSL 2015, Celebrate the Flag

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The Canada Day celebration in the City of Côte Saint-Luc on July 1 will highlight the fiftieth anniversary of the Canadian flag and will honour Irwin Cotler with an induction onto the Human Rights Walkway.


“Our Canada Day event attracts thousands of people and it’s an opportunity to honour people who have made a difference, whether somewhere else in the world or here at home,” Mayor Anthony Housefather said. “This year we have decided to induct Professor Irwin Cotler on the Côte Saint-Luc Human Rights Walkway. For the past 5 decades, he has devoted his intellect and advocacy skills to the pursuit of justice around the world, first as an international human rights lawyer and later as a Member of Parliament for Mount Royal, and Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, where he made the pursuit of international justice a government priority.”


All Canada Day activities take place at Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park on Mackle Rd. The Irwin Cotler induction takes place at 9:05 pm.

2014-07-01 010 Canada Day Maple Leaf

“To highlight the fiftieth anniversary of the Canadian flag we will be flying a greater than usual number of Canadian flags throughout Côte Saint-Luc,” said Councillor Glenn J. Nashen, who is co-chair of the event.  “Also, the children from our day camps will be producing a banner that will be displayed during the festivities. The theme of the banner is Canada and what does being Canadian mean to you.”


Canada Day will also feature a Canadian citizenship ceremony for new Canadians, live music by Replay the Beatles and a show with The Incredible Boris, comedy hypnotist. Kids will enjoy storytelling, inflatable games, the children’s train, the roaming magician, arts and crafts and more. Other activities include free pedal boats on Centennial Lake, a photo booth, a model airplane show, a model boat show, free cupcakes, and the closing fireworks at 9:45 pm.


See the Canada Day schedule at www.CoteSaintLuc.org/CanadaDay2015.


“This year’s masters of ceremonies is a tag-team of four anchors from Global TV: Camille Ross, Jessica Laventure, Elysia Bryan-Baynes and Travis Todd,” said Councillor Mike Cohen, who is also co-chair of the event.


Event sponsors include Canadian Heritage, Global, Qualitifruits, Domino’s Pizza, The Suburban, Maac.ca, Quartier Cavendish, RBC, Scotiabank, Chartwell Castel Royal and West Island Music Academy.


In case of heavy rain, many activities would move to the Confederation Annex in Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park. The Canadian citizenship ceremony would be moved to the Aquatic and Community Centre (5794 Parkhaven) at 5 pm. The induction ceremony for Irwin Cotler on to the Human Rights Walkway would take place at 6 pm. The fireworks display would be postponed to Thursday, July 2 starting at 9:30 pm. The kids train and model airplanes and boats would be cancelled.


Côte Saint-Luc rendra hommage à Irwin Cotler et soulignera le 50e anniversaire du drapeau canadien lors des célébrations de la fête du Canada
Les célébrations de la fête du Canada qui auront lieu à Côte Saint-Luc le 1er juillet comprendront cérémonie pour introniser Irwin Cotler sur la Promenade des droits de personne et souligneront le 50e anniversaire du drapeau canadien.
« Nos festivités de la fête du Canada attirent des milliers de participants. C’est aussi l’occasion d’honorer des personnes qui ont contribué à changer les choses, ailleurs dans le monde ou ici dans notre pays, a déclaré le maire Anthony Housefather. Cette année nous avons décidé d’introniser Irwin Cotler sur la Promenade des droits de la personne de Côte Saint-Luc. Depuis  cinquante ans, Irwin Cotler a consacré son intelligence et ses talents de plaideur à la promotion et à la protection des droits de la personne partout dans le monde, d’abord comme avocat des droits de la personne internationaux, puis comme député fédéral de Mont-Royal, et ministre de la Justice et procureur général du Canada, faisant de la poursuite de la justice internationale une priorité du gouvernement. »
Toutes les activités de la fête du Canada se dérouleront au parc Pierre Elliott Trudeau sur le chemin Mackle. L’intronisation d’Irwin Cotler aura lieu à 21 h 05.
« Pour souligner le cinquantième anniversaire du drapeau canadien, nous flotterons un plus grand nombre que d’habitude de drapeaux à travers Côte Saint-Luc, dit le conseiller Glenn J. Nashen, qui copréside les célébrations de cette année. Aussi, les enfants du camp de jour prépareront une bannière qui sera affichée durant les festivités. Le thème de la bannière est le Canada et que cela signifie-t-il pour vous d’être canadien. »
Le programme de la fête du Canada comprend aussi une cérémonie de citoyenneté canadienne pour les nouveaux Canadiens, la musique de Replay the Beatles et un spectacle avec l’hypnotise-comédien The Incredible Boris. De nombreuses activités sont prévues pour les plus jeunes : histoires, manèges gonflables, train des enfants, magicien ambulant,  bricolages et plus encore. Il y aura également des balades gratuites en pédalo sur le lac Centennial, un kiosque de photo, une exposition d’avions modèles réduits, une distribution de petits gâteaux et, pour terminer, les feux d’artifice à 21 h 45.
On peut consulter l’horaire de la fête du Canada à CoteSaintLuc.org/fr/FeteduCanada2015.
« Cette année, les maîtres de cérémonie de l’événement seront une équipe de quatre personnalités de Global : Camille Ross, Jessica Laventure, Elysia Bryan-Baynes et Travis Todd », dit le conseiller Mike Cohen, qui copréside également les célébrations de cette année
Les commanditaires de la fête du Canada comprennent Patrimoine canadien, Global, Qualitifruits, Domino’s Pizza, The Suburban, Maac.ca, Quartier Cavendish, RBC, Banque Scotia, Chartwell Castel Royal et l’Académie de musique de l’Ouest de l’île.
En cas de fortes pluies, plusieurs activités auront lieu dans l’Annexe de la confédération au parc Pierre Elliott Trudeau. La cérémonie de citoyenneté aura lieu au Centre communautaire et aquatique (5794 Parkhaven) à 17 h et l’intronisation d’Irwin Cotler sur la promenade des droits de la personne suivra à 18 h. Les feux d’artifice seront reportés au jeudi 2 juillet à 21 h 30. Certaines activités telles le train des enfants et les avions et bateaux modèles réduits seront annulées.

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