Head down to Ottawa City Hall on Saturday, September 16 at 9 a.m. to witness the first full joint exercising of Freedom of the City in Ottawa. Mayor Jim Watson has invited all 18 military and three cadet units that have previously been granted Freedom of the City to return and exercise their right.
The event is being held to thank the military for its contributions toward keeping Ottawa and Canada safe during the last 150 years.
The granting of Freedom of the City by a municipality is one of the most esteemed honours to bestow on a military unit. This symbolic designation allows the unit to, “march through the street with drums beating, colours flying and bayonets fixed.”
Units participating in the parade will march, in uniform, in front of Ottawa City Hall. The spectacle will include the Governor General’s Foot Guards Band and the Central Band of the Canadian Armed Forces.
The event takes place at City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West, in front of the Heritage Building on Elgin Street.
You’ll want to bring your camera! But, maybe not your car.
Due to the ceremony, there will be some traffic impacts downtown including:
- Queen Elizabeth Drive at Somerset Street to the National Arts Centre will be closed to traffic from 8 to 11:30 a.m.
- The north and southbound lanes of Elgin Street, from Lisgar Street to Laurier Avenue, will be closed by Ottawa Police from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.
- There will be rolling street closures as the parade marches off. The route will run along Elgin Street from Lisgar Street to Cooper Street, Cooper Street to Cartier Street, Cartier Street to Lisgar Street and then back onto Elgin Street and the eastbound lane of Laurier Avenue West