News

Change in celebration dates doesn't bother many as hundreds attend July 2 parade

By Chris Funston, Woodstock Sentinel-Review

Tractors, combines and a plethora of other farm equipment graced the streets of Oxford County for the parade on Monday. (Chris Funston/Sentinel-Review)

Tractors, combines and a plethora of other farm equipment graced the streets of Oxford County for the parade on Monday. (Chris Funston/Sentinel-Review)

Norwich Township might have celebrated on the day after on Canada Day – marking the nation’s birthday on July 2 in Oxford Centre – but no one seemed to mind.  

The change didn't bother the hundreds that gathered at the intersection of Old Stage Road and Middletown Line for the parade on Monday.

Shelly Buchanan, co-chair of the event's committee, explained that the turnout was fantastic and they had little doubts that residents wouldn't take to having the event a day later.

“Lots of places hold their celebrations over the whole spread of the weekend,” she said. “We weren't too concerned.”

The decision to move the Canada Day parade to Monday was made by a volunteer committee as to include as many people as possible in the celebration. Input about changing the festivities to July 1 was considered, though ultimately the committee reconfirmed their decision to hold the event on July 2.

One of the largest considerations when planning the event was that most people still had to work on Sunday and would have missed out on the event. Judging by the turnout, Buchanan thinks that they made the right decision.

“All of the retail stores were open yesterday. Today was going to be the day most people had off and I think you can tell.”

The celebrations rotate each year between the villages of Norwich Township. This gives each of them a chance to showcase what their village is all about.

“We take a big focus on agriculture here in Oxford Centre,” said Buchanan as she joked that about half of the parade's 52 entries were either tractors of combines.

Stephanie Nichol said that she didn't hear many negative comments about the event being moved a day later. She explained that which day it fell on didn't matter to her, though it made sense to move it to Monday as most businesses were open on Sunday.

“It's always nice to have it on the holiday day, because most businesses are closed. Some of the business, especially retailers, are still open on Sunday so people can't come out. If it's on the holiday Monday when people can come out and enjoy the festivities it's better.

Next year, the township's Canada Day festivities will be held in Burgessville.