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In 1967 when Canada turned 100 years old my parents packed up the family (four kids under the age of ten) into a 1963 Ford Fairlane and headed west.  Growing up in Ottawa, every family had some sort of Centennial project.  My parents having grown up in the west figured a road trip to Saskatchewan and Alberta visiting places they had lived and visiting distant relatives we kids had never heard of would be our family’s “Centennial Trip”.

Bear in mind that a vehicle from the early 60’s did not have air conditioning, seat belts or FM radio.  A car seat for little siblings was science fiction.  You can imagine 10-12 hours of hot summer driving across northern Ontario or the prairies with cranky, tired kids asking “are we there yet?”  We learned how to dodge my fathers “Hand of Doom” as he reached over the front bench seat with his right hand (while driving) to break up unrestrained wrestling matches or fights. We learned that the rear window ledge behind the rear seat was out of his reach.

Eventually we made it to Calgary for the 1967 Stamped Parade.  After days visiting aged relatives, various farms and every place in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan that former Prime Minister Diefenbaker touched – getting cowboy hats (with whistles) and going to a parade was great.   I remember we went to the Grandstand show too.  “Cowtown” was a big deal, so maybe that’s why a little over a decade later I ended up working and living in Calgary.

So now the question in 2017 for my family is what constitutes the family’s Canada 150 Project? (Easier than saying “Canada Sesquicentennial Project” several times).  What is your family planning for a Canada 150 project?

Pete S – Gemini Corporation

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