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Hamilton targets 2023 for next Battle of Stoney Creek; ‘in-person’ events return as COVID rules ease

Participants during a recent re-enactment of the Battle of Stoney Creek. City Of Hamilton

There’s some assurance going forward, as it relates to re-enactments of the Battle of Stoney Creek.

A motion approved by Hamilton city council directs staff to plan for delivery of an in-person event in 2023 that includes re-enactment activities and portrays in a “respectful and historically-accurate manner” all communities involved and impacted, including Indigenous Peoples.

The event is traditionally held on the first weekend of June at Battlefield Park, but did not take place last weekend because of COVID uncertainty. It was also put on hold in 2020 and 2021, due to pandemic restrictions.

Ward 5 Coun. Russ Powers presented the council-approved motion on Wednesday, citing questions about the re-enactment’s future.

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“This motion is offered as clarification and direction, on a recent issue that has prompted a significant reaction by multiples of hundreds of Stoney Creek and Greater Hamilton residents,” said Powers.

Carrie Brooks-Joiner, Hamilton’s director of tourism and culture, expanded upon recent questions about the future of the re-enactments, which are a 40-year tradition at Battlefield Park.

Brooks-Joiner said they stemmed from a recent meeting designed to gather ideas for the future.

“Unfortunately those ideas were misconstrued as decisions, where in fact, decisions had not been made on the 2023 event.”

She also stressed that the city continues to expand the provision of space for “the sharing of Indigenous stories and voices,” including the Soaring Spirit Pow Wow Festival at Battlefield Park, scheduled for June 25-26 of this year.

Several festivals and events returning to Hamilton this weekend

With Ontario expiring remaining mask mandates this weekend due to improving COVID-19 indicators, a number of Hamilton events are set to resume after a two-year hiatus.

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Ancaster Heritage Days will go on Saturday despite some construction delays at the new arts centre.

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The parade along Wilson Street is set for 10 a.m. on Saturday beginning at Academy Street and ending at Todd.

Sulphur Springs Road will host the soapbox derby between Wilson and Mansfield Road from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Concession Streetfest stage will start at 10 a.m. on Saturday and is anchored with shopping, food truck, car show and other entertainment along the thoroughfare between Upper Wentworth and East 25th.

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Meanwhile, the Barton Village Festival will offer similar elements along Barton Street between Victoria Avenue and Wentworth.

Three entertainment stages, an art and children’s zones will open at 11 a.m.

Also this week, the City of Hamilton has confirmed the return of Canada Day celebrations in Bayfront Park, ending with a fireworks display this July 1.

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