150Forward Community Celebration

On Thursday, August 2, the City of Victoria celebrated 150 years of proud history -- and a bright future!  The community was invited to the 150Forward Community Celebration, immediately following the public anniversary ceremony in Centennial Square.

150 Forward Community Celebration   

Thursday, August 2, 2012
Noon - 6 p.m.
Centennial Square

On Thursday, August 2, 2012, the community was invited to celebrate 150 years of proud history -- and a bright future!  Participants had an opportunity to journey through time, interact with creatively costumed performers, and enjoy complimentary refreshments and cake as they settled in for the afternoon festivities. The event directly followed the 150th Anniversary Public Ceremony in Centennial Square from 11 a.m. - noon.

The main stage entertained the crowd with performances that celebrated our history, showcase diverse cultures, and highlight our current day and beyond. The community was invited to record their anniversary greeting for the digital time capsule, take part in interactive fun, and enjoy local cuisine and much more.

Activities

Families were encouraged to participate in all that was planned to celebrate Victoria's 150th!
  • Enjoy live music performances on Spirit Stage by The Ecclestons, Uminari Taiko, Kumbia, Wontanara, Good for Grapes and more ...
  • Send a message to the future with a recorded message for the Victoria 150 digital time capsule...
  • Visit the Victoria 150 tent for free give-aways and Victoria 150 book signings...
  • Take free tours of the City Hall Clock Tower ... 
  • Post an archival or current photo on our "Living Wall" in Centennial Square ...
  • Visit multimedia displays featuring historical footage and anniversary greetings ...
  • Tour interactive displays presented by the Victoria Fire Department Historic Society, VicPD Police Museum, Canadian Coast Guard, BC Forest Service, Monarchist League and many others ...  
  • Learn more about and meet representatives from Victoria's Twin Cities ...
  • Participate in children's games and activities ...
  • Enjoy fun photo opportunities ...
  • Visit with the Victoria 150 History2Life characters and delight in roving performers ...
  • Learn about Victoria's rich history from roving costumed historical characters and much more!

Musical Performances


Uminari Taiko (12:30 p.m.) Uminari Taiko is Vancouver Island's first taiko drumming ensemble. Its mission is to share and promote the art of Japanese taiko drumming through performance. Uminari is a Japanese word that can be translated as “roaring sea," the sound of the crashing waves and the silence in between. It is a name that captures equally the essence of Taiko and of our windy, wave-swept island.

Kumbia (1 p.m.) Since the summer of 1988, the music of Kumbia has spiced up the lives of the people in southern British Columbia with their hot mixture of Afro-Caribbean rhythms -- so infectious that no foot can stay still when they start playing their variety of cumbias, socas, merenques, cha-chas, rumbas and batucadas. Flute, guitar and trumpet melodies ride on a high-energy percussion atmosphere. The members bring a south-north and past-present blend of musical experiences as diverse as Canada and its cultural heritage.

The Ecclestons (2 p.m.) For over a decade this trio of brother and sister Kelt and Colleen Eccleston and their 'adopted brother' multi-instrumentalist, Greg Madill have been captivating audiences with their unique musicality, riveting original material, stunning harmonies and energizing stage presence. They are nomads of a sort all growing up all across Canada from Vancouver to Newfoundland and offering a vantage point rare in contemporary folk /pop music. Their joy of performing, sense of humour and purpose brings audiences everywhere to their feet and leaves them with a song in their heart.

Victoria Chinese Culture Club (3 p.m.) The Victoria Chinese Club is a non-profit Chinese performing arts organization run completely by volunteers. With over 50 members, it has three teams: the Children's Ethnic Chinese Dance Team, the Adult Ethnic Chinese Dance Team, and the Fitness/Martial Art Dance Team. Its dancers range from seven year olds to 70 year olds, and are from all walks of life. The goals of the organization are contribution to the multicultural harmony of Victoria and enrichment of the cultural lives of its members as well as those in the larger Victoria community.

Wontanara (3:45 p.m.) Wontanara Drum & Dance is a Victoria-based performance troupe and school led by Guinean Master Dancer and choreographer Mohamed Andre Duranteau. This dynamic group specializes in sharing and teaching traditional dances, rhythms and songs originating from Guinea, West Africa. Wontanara, which means “We are United” or “Come Together” in the Susu language of Guinea, is a true definition of the spirit of West African Drum amd Dance culture and the driving force that makes Wontanara an unforgettable experience!

Good for Grapes (5 p.m.) Good for Grapes formed in September 2010 after a group of friends took a trip to Victoria for some modest busking. Since the moment they stepped onto the ferry, they were an attraction. Drawing unexpected crowds, naturally this young and aspiring band took form; an original and talented five-piece group, with an array of harmonizing voices and instruments. Hailing from Vancouver, British Columbia, this folk/alternative act has been gaining momentum ever since they stepped into the music scene. Their live stage performance has evolved into an incredibly active, folk stomping, and inviting energy; always resulting in an extremely enthusiastic and involved audience.

City Hall Clock Tower Tours

The community was invited to attend a free tour of the City Hall clock tower, approximately every 20 minutes from noon - 6 p.m., and to convene in Centennial Square near Douglas Street. Tour time slots were issued.  

Commemorative Book Launch

Donald Luxton and the Victoria Civic Heritage Trust launched an exciting new publication, TEST OF TIME: The Enduring Legacy of Victoria City Hall.  The launch included a lecture from 4pm - 5:30pm at the City Hall Ante Chamber, followed by a book signing. Admission was free. 

Produced by the Victoria Civic Heritage Trust in honour of the City's 150th anniversary, this beautiful hard-cover book chronicles the contentious beginnings, decline and remarkable rebirth of this venerable structure, the first civic building in Western Canada, and designated as a national historic site. The book also includes the DVD, A Townscape Re-Discovered: Construction of Centennial Square, 1966, which tells the fascinating story of the building of Centennial Square.

Funding Partners and Sponsors

The City of Victoria gratefully acknowledges the financial support of its funding partners who have made Victoria 150 celebrations possible: Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage Community Anniversaries grant, the Province of British Columbia, the Canada -- British Columbia Cooperation Agreement on Official Languages, and the Greater Victoria Spirit Committee Society. The 150Forward Community Celebration was presented by the City of Victoria in partnership with the following community partners and sponsors: