How to celebrate our country’s birthday whether you’re poolside, dockside or parkside.
Happy Birthday, Canada! Our home and native land is 151 glorious years young—and just because this isn’t a “big” birthday like last year’s sesquicentennial doesn’t mean we should be dialling down the July 1 celebrations. So whether you’re staying in the city with the kids or hitting the cottage with the fam, we’ve got you covered with ways to get celebratory this Canada Day.
Have a picnic
There’s nothing like ambling over to your local park for a dinner al grass-o (ants not invited, of course). Bonus points if you keep the party going long enough to reserve a prime spot to watch the neighbourhood fireworks once the sun’s gone down.
GET: The red-and-white colour scheme of a classic checkered picnic blanket makes it all but mandatory for a Canada Day outing. If you want to really level up, however, we love this Hudson Bay blanket in their signature, iconically Canadian stripe.
EAT: It’s not a picnic without a macaroni salad—and our recipe for The Ultimate Macaroni Salad is the way to go. You'll also want to whip up our Devilled Egg Salad Sandwiches, Fruit Tuna Salad Pitas and for dessert, The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies, naturally.
DO: Who doesn’t love a game of cornhole? Bring along this portable CG party game for a little fun as your food digests. Be warned: It can get surprisingly competitive!
Keep it dockside
Nothing is more “Canada” than celebrating out in the great outdoors tourists travel so far to see. We’re envisioning a lazy afternoon of dipping in and out of the lake, a BBQ going in the background, and the promise of a blazing bonfire (S’mores mandatory) later in the evening.
Image: Rustic Inn
GET: Picture this: The pitch black of a country sky, dark except for a trail of lanterns set up down your dock, pointing the way to a midnight skinny-dip, uh, we mean swim. Try these rustic-chic rope and wood versions from Canadian Tire.
EAT: Your guests will be expecting burgers, so don’t disappoint them. A nice twist, however, is a turkey burger with...wait for it...caramelized onions. For accompaniments, check out our roundup of crowd-pleasing side dishes, and for dessert, try Butter Tart Ice Pops.
DO: Make an all Canadian playlist—we’re thinking Bieber, Twain, Drake, Barenaked Ladies, Shawn Mendes—and blast it out over the water with a splashproof wireless speaker, like this one from Bose. But don’t blame us when Uncle Harold starts busting a move to “Hotline Bling”.
Host a poolside fete
We get to use our pools just a few months a year — so of course, you’re going to take full advantage of it this Canada Day! Grown-ups can lounge near the cocktails and apps while the little ones splash away safely in everyone’s eye view.
GET: Plenty of bohemian-inspired blankets and pillows for guests to cozy up on (such as this jacquard-weave throw and wool-embroidered cushion from H&M and this tufted tassel pillow and moon phases blanket from Urban Outfitters) will lend the party a casual-chic vibe.
EAT: We suggest making a pitcher of a signature cocktail, such as Canada Collins. For the main feast, whip up a few of our favourite classic Canadian dishes, and have a grand finale with this cake, which looks so impressive no one will guess it takes just one bowl to mix it all up in.
DO: Drape string lights across the dining scene to create a magical mood, and document the evening with a retro camera, like a Fujifilm SQ6 Instax Square or a Polaroid Originals refurbished instant camera.