The sweltering heat isn’t putting a damper on Canada Day celebrations in the Forest City.
This year’s festivities will be going strong all day long at Harris Park, with several new features.
“We have a much bigger kid’s zone. We have a few more vendors than we normally would. The Beer Garden is also new and we’re bringing in some bands that are a little bit bigger this year,” said Rhaili Champaigne, manager of events for the city.
Although the event is taking place outdoors, Champaigne says they have plenty of ways to help you stay cool.
“There’s a lot of shade in the park from the trees. We also have some cool treats that are going to be on-site, such as ice cream vendors and what-not. We’re also telling everyone to make sure they bring water,” she said.
Fireworks will get underway at 10 p.m.
The London Majors play at 6 p.m. and fans are welcome to stay and watch the fireworks.
Meanwhile, the East London Optimists are running events starting at 1 p.m. at Argyle Arena, with fireworks at dusk, while the Optimists Club of Byron event at Byron Optimist Sports Complex on Boler Road will start its fireworks at 10 p.m.
At the Western Fair District, country music artists will take to the stage for Trackside Music Festival Saturday and Sunday.
If you plan to set-off your own fireworks, the London Fire Department has a few tips and warnings to share.
“Make sure you’re doing so on your own property. You can’t discharge fireworks on a roadway or inside a public park,” said deputy fire chief Jack Burt.
“Only light one firework at a time and only on the ground. Never try to hold on in your hand,” he said.
“If you do have a firework that doesn’t light, it could be a dud. Make sure you stay away from that firework for about 30 minutes then dunk it in a bucket of water to make sure it’s disposed of properly.”
Burt also said to be respectful of neighbours, appoint a sober person to be in charge, don’t discharge fireworks near combustible materials like buildings, trees and tall grass and make sure people are a safe distance away and upwind from the fireworks being discharged.
Be sure to read the instructions on the fireworks package and keep a water hose or pail of water close by to douse the empty firework, he added.
Burt says there are a lot of safety measure you should be taking for your own displays, so why not go to a professional one instead?
“There are a number of fireworks that are happening in the London area over Canada Day weekend and we would encourage you to go out and see one of those displays.”