To celebrate Civic Holiday 2023 in Newfoundland and Labrador, participate in local parades and public gatherings, engage in traditional family activities, and explore outdoor adventures. Don’t miss out on the special events planned for 2023 and enjoy the traditional foods and drinks associated with the holiday. Also, consider giving back to the community through volunteer work or community service.

How To Celebrate Civic Holiday In Newfoundland and Labrador

Ahoy there, fellow adventurers and lovers of all things Newfoundland and Labrador! Are you ready to dive into the heart of our beloved Civic Holiday? This isn’t just any ordinary day off work, oh no! This is a day steeped in tradition, community spirit, and of course, a healthy dose of fun.

The Civic Holiday, a day when we put aside our daily grind and come together to celebrate the vibrant culture and rich history of our beautiful province. It’s a day when the air is filled with the aroma of traditional foods, the sounds of laughter, and the sight of our communities coming alive in a spectacular display of unity and festivity.

But wait! Before you start dusting off your party hats and prepping your picnic baskets, let’s take a moment to delve deeper into what makes this holiday so special. Why do we celebrate it? How did it all begin? And most importantly, how can you make the most of Civic Holiday 2023 in Newfoundland and Labrador?


  • Civic Holiday in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut is a day of unity, community, and cultural celebration.
  • Traditional celebrations include community gatherings, cultural showcases, and outdoor adventures.
  • Indigenous celebrations, feasting on traditional foods, and midnight sun celebrations are unique traditions and customs of the holiday.
  • Events in the Northwest Territories include the Mountain Portage Rapids Paddlefest and the Whooping Arts Festival.
  • Events in Nunavut include the Calm Air Town Hall in Coral Harbour and the AEM Pre-Employment Rankin Inlet program.
  • Kid-friendly activities include the Yellowknife Triathlon and the Junior Arctic Games in Iqaluit.
  • Family celebration ideas include picnics under the midnight sun, attending community events, exploring local culture, and going on nature walks.

Well, dear reader, you’re in for a treat! We’ve got all the answers and more, wrapped up in this comprehensive guide. So, buckle up and get ready for a journey through time, tradition, and tantalizing treats. Trust us, you won’t want to miss what’s coming next!

History of the Civic Holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador

Ready to hop into our time machine? Let’s journey back to the origins of the Civic Holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador. This isn’t just a day off work, it’s a day that holds a special place in the hearts of our people, a day that’s as much a part of our identity as our love for a good “scuff and scoff” (that’s a dance and a meal for you non-Newfoundlanders!).

Origin and Significance

The Civic Holiday, also known as Regatta Day in St. John’s, has roots that run deep into the soil of our history. It’s a day that celebrates community spirit, unity, and the unique culture of Newfoundland and Labrador. But it’s not all about fun and games. The Civic Holiday also serves as a reminder of our resilience, our strength, and our ability to come together in the face of adversity. It’s a testament to the indomitable spirit of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

How it has been traditionally celebrated

Traditionally, the Civic Holiday has been a day of grand celebrations. Picture this: streets buzzing with laughter and chatter, parades with vibrant floats and marching bands, families gathered in parks for picnics, and the thrilling spectacle of the Royal St. John’s Regatta. From the crack of dawn to the stroke of midnight, the province comes alive with festivities.

And let’s not forget the food! From toutons to Jiggs’ dinner, the Civic Holiday is a culinary celebration that would make any foodie’s heart sing.

So, there you have it, a peek into the past of our beloved Civic Holiday. But hold on to your hats, because we’re just getting started. There’s plenty more to discover, so stick around!

Civic Holiday Activities in Newfoundland and Labrador

Ah, the Civic Holiday, a day when Newfoundland and Labrador transforms into a playground of endless fun and excitement. But with so much to do and see, where do you start? Fear not, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a rundown of some of the top activities that will make your Civic Holiday 2023 unforgettable.

Parades and Public Gatherings

First on the agenda, parades and public gatherings. These are the heart and soul of the Civic Holiday. Imagine streets lined with spectators, all eyes on the vibrant floats and performers. The air is filled with music, laughter, and the unmistakable buzz of excitement. Whether you’re marching in the parade or cheering from the sidelines, it’s an experience that’s sure to leave you with a smile on your face and a spring in your step.

Space is the place!

The event titled “Space is the place!” is a fun-filled gathering where participants are encouraged to bring their lightsabers for an exciting battle. The event’s theme is inspired by the Star Wars universe, as indicated by the phrase “May the force be with you!” It promises an engaging and thrilling experience for all Star Wars enthusiasts and those who enjoy adventurous activities. Details

Date – Aug 6 – 12, 2023

Location – 5 Shearakin Lane Rocky Harbour, NL A0K 4N0 Canada

Family Activities

Next up, family activities. The Civic Holiday is a time for families to come together and create memories that will last a lifetime. Why not start a new family tradition? It could be a picnic in one of our beautiful parks, a friendly game of soccer, or perhaps a baking marathon to whip up some traditional Newfoundland treats. Whatever you choose, it’s the togetherness that counts.

Workout In The Park

“Workout In The Park” is an energizing fitness event that welcomes individuals of all ages and fitness levels. The sessions, designed to accommodate everyone’s needs and goals, follow a High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) style, ideal for improving cardiovascular fitness, building muscle, and burning fat. Details

Date & Time – Sat, Aug 5, 2023 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM NDT

Location – Bowring Park 305 Waterford Bridge Road St. John’s, NL A1E 1E7 Canada

Outdoor Adventures

For the adventurers among us, the Civic Holiday is the perfect time to explore the great outdoors. Outdoor adventures in Newfoundland and Labrador are second to none. From hiking along our breathtaking coastal trails to kayaking in our pristine waters, there’s an adventure waiting around every corner. And let’s not forget about the Royal St. John’s Regatta, a thrilling boat race that’s a highlight of the Civic Holiday.

Haunted Hike 2023

The Haunted Hike 2023 is an award-winning theatrical tour that takes participants through the historic and haunted streets of downtown St. John’s. The event features dramatic storytelling, exploring the city’s murderous history and paranormal legacy. The tour lasts for 75 minutes and is suitable for ages 8 and up, with the guides sharing their favorite stories from previous hikes. Details

Date & Time – Tue, Aug 1, 2023 9:00 PM – 10:15 PM NDT

Location – Anglican Cathedral 16 Church Hill St. John’s, NL A1C 3Z9 Canada

Cultural and Historical Sites to Visit

Last but certainly not least, the Civic Holiday is an excellent opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich culture and history of Newfoundland and Labrador. There are countless cultural and historical sites to visit. From the colourful row houses of Jellybean Row to the historic Signal Hill, there’s a story waiting to be discovered at every turn.

Where Once They Stood

The “Where Once They Stood” event is a historical walking tour that lasts approximately 85 minutes. The tour, organized by Boyle Tours, offers an incredible cultural experience through the old St. John’s, featuring storytelling and dramatic speeches to provide a real sense of the place’s history. Details

Date & Time – Tue, Aug 1, 2023 9:55 AM – 12:55 PM NDT

Location – Sheraton Hotel Newfoundland 115 Cavendish Square St. John’s, NL A1C 3K2 Canada

So there you have it, a taste of what the Civic Holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador has to offer. But remember, this is just the beginning. The real magic happens when you step out and experience it for yourself.

Special Events for Civic Holiday 2023

Just when you thought the Civic Holiday couldn’t get any better, we’re here to tell you – hold onto your party hats, because 2023 is set to be a year like no other! We’ve got a lineup of special events that will make this Civic Holiday the most memorable one yet. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the exciting world of Civic Holiday 2023 special events.

The Grand Parade

First up, we have the Grand Parade. This isn’t your average parade, folks. Picture larger-than-life floats, performers in dazzling costumes, and marching bands playing tunes that will have you dancing in the streets. The Grand Parade is a spectacle of colour, sound, and movement that’s sure to leave you spellbound. You can check further details from here.

The Royal St. John’s Regatta

Next on the list is the Royal St. John’s Regatta. This isn’t just a boat race, it’s a tradition that dates back nearly 200 years. Watch as teams battle it out on the waters of Quidi Vidi Lake, their oars slicing through the water in perfect harmony. Whether you’re a rowing enthusiast or a first-time spectator, the Regatta is a thrilling experience that’s not to be missed.

The Royal St. John’s Regatta, North America’s longest-running sporting event since 1818, takes place on the first Wednesday of August, weather permitting. This event features traditional fixed-seat rowing on Quidi Vidi Lake and attracts up to 50,000 spectators along the shore.

Official Website:

Contact No. – +1 (709) 576 8921 & +1 (709) 576 8058

E-mail – [email protected]

The Great Newfoundland Picnic

Then we have the Great Newfoundland Picnic. This is a picnic like no other. Imagine a sea of picnic blankets spread out under the summer sky, families and friends gathered around baskets of delicious food, laughter and chatter filling the air. The Great Newfoundland Picnic is a celebration of community, food, and the simple joy of being together. You can know more about it from here.

The Cultural Showcase

Last but not least, we have the Cultural Showcase. This is your chance to immerse yourself in the rich culture and history of Newfoundland and Labrador. From traditional music and dance performances to craft workshops and storytelling sessions, the Cultural Showcase is a journey into the heart of our province’s heritage.

Community Art Studio

Artists and educators Cameron Forbes, Sandra Hewitt Parsons, and Sam Osmond invite you to another exciting season of the Community Art Studio. This event promises an afternoon filled with creativity, welcoming individuals of all ages and backgrounds. You’re encouraged to let your imagination run wild and create freely with a wide array of materials. Details

Date & Time – Sat, Aug 5, 2023 1:30 PM – 3:30 PM NDT

Location – Rotary Arts Centre 5 Park Street Corner Brook, NL A2H 2W9 Canada

So there you have it, a sneak peek into the special events planned for Civic Holiday 2023. But remember, this is just a taste of what’s to come. The real magic happens when you join in the celebrations. So mark your calendars, folks, because Civic Holiday 2023 is going to be a blast!

Food and Drink

If there’s one thing we Newfoundlanders and Labradorians know how to do right, it’s food and drink. The Civic Holiday is a culinary extravaganza, a day when our traditional dishes take center stage and our local beverages flow freely. So, loosen your belt buckles and prepare your taste buds, because we’re about to embark on a delicious journey through the food and drink of the Civic Holiday.

Traditional Foods and Drinks

First up, let’s talk about traditional foods and drinks. The Civic Holiday is a time to indulge in the flavors of Newfoundland and Labrador. From the hearty Jiggs’ dinner, a boiled meal featuring salt beef and an array of vegetables, to the sweet and tart partridgeberry pie, our traditional dishes are a testament to our province’s rich culinary heritage.

And let’s not forget about the drinks! Whether it’s a pint of locally brewed beer, a glass of Screech (our famous rum), or a cup of freshly brewed tea, there’s a beverage to quench every thirst.

Where to Find Them

Now, you might be wondering, where can you find these culinary delights? Well, you’re in luck! The Civic Holiday is a time when our local restaurants, pubs, and bakeries pull out all the stops. From St. John’s to Corner Brook, you’ll find special Civic Holiday menus featuring our traditional dishes and drinks.

And for those who prefer a home-cooked meal, why not try your hand at making some of these dishes yourself? You’ll find plenty of recipes online, and who knows, you might discover a new family favorite!

So there you have it, a taste of the food and drink that makes the Civic Holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador so special. But remember, the best way to experience it is to dive in and try it for yourself. So, get ready to eat, drink, and be merry, because the Civic Holiday is a feast for the senses!

Community Service

The Civic Holiday is a day of celebration, but it’s also a day of giving back. Community service is a cornerstone of our holiday traditions, a way for us to strengthen our bonds and make a positive impact on our province. So, roll up your sleeves and prepare to make a difference, because we’re about to delve into the world of community service on the Civic Holiday.

Importance of Community Service

First, let’s talk about the importance of community service. The Civic Holiday is a celebration of our community, and what better way to celebrate than by giving back? Community service is a way for us to show our love for Newfoundland and Labrador, to contribute to its wellbeing and growth. It’s a chance to make a difference, to leave our mark, and to inspire others to do the same.

Ways to Get Involved

Now, you might be wondering, how can you get involved? Well, there are countless ways to get involved in community service on the Civic Holiday. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Join a Clean-Up Campaign: Many communities organize clean-up campaigns to keep our province beautiful. It’s a great way to spend time outdoors and make a visible difference in your community.
  • Volunteer at a Local Event: Many of the events we’ve mentioned earlier wouldn’t be possible without the help of volunteers. Whether it’s helping to set up for the Grand Parade or serving food at the Great Newfoundland Picnic, there’s a role for everyone.
  • Donate to a Local Charity: If you’re unable to volunteer your time, consider making a donation to a local charity. Every little bit helps, and it’s a great way to support the causes you care about.

So there you have it, a glimpse into the world of community service on the Civic Holiday. Remember, every act of service, no matter how small, can make a big difference.


And there you have it, folks! We’ve journeyed through the history of the Civic Holiday, explored the myriad of activities and special events, savored the traditional foods and drinks, and discovered the joy of giving back through community service.

The Civic Holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador is more than just a day off work. It’s a celebration of our community, our culture, and our shared history. It’s a day when we come together to celebrate, to remember, and to look forward to the future.

So, whether you’re a lifelong Newfoundlander, a recent transplant, or a visitor to our shores, we invite you to join in the celebrations. Participate in the parades, sample the traditional dishes, lend a hand in your community, and immerse yourself in the spirit of the Civic Holiday.

Remember, the Civic Holiday is what we make of it. So let’s make Civic Holiday 2023 the best one yet! Here’s to a day of joy, unity, and unforgettable memories. Happy Civic Holiday, everyone!


Julie R McCrea is an eLearning and Employment Project Specialist, author, and advocate for newcomers to Canada. With over 20 years in adult education, she contributes insightful Canadian Cultural articles to various platforms, including Julie’s passion for innovative learning approaches and her belief in education as the great equalizer shine through her work. She manages the EMCN Job Ready YouTube channel and is a vocal supporter of the LGBTQ2S+ community.

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