National Flag of Canada Day


Source: Public Works and Government Services Canada

A brief history of the flag

  • The year was 1964 and Canada’s centennial was fast approaching. Parliament voted to adopt a new design for the Canadian flag and issued a call for submissions. Almost 4,000 designs were submitted in many different colour combinations and motifs by Canadians from all walks of life, including A. Y. Jackson of the Group of Seven.
  • Submissions came in all shapes and sizes and on a variety of materials: wrapping paper, tissue paper, wallpaper, cardboard, bristol board, mat board, pieces of cloth, etc. Some people used pictures out of magazines, the labels off commercial products or postcards or included petitions in support of their design.
  • The final design was announced on December 15, 1964, and the official ceremony inaugurating the new Canadian flag was held on February 15, 1965.

Elements of the flag

  • Red and white were designated Canada’s colours by King George V on November 21, 1921, in the proclamation of the Royal Arms of Canada – Canada’s coat of arms.
  • The maple leaf as found on the national flag is a traditional emblem of Canada. It was for many years the symbol of the Canadian Armed Forces and was used to identify Canadian contingents in the two world wars.

Did you know…

  • The flag on Parliament Hill’s Peace Tower is 4.6 metres (or 15′) wide and 2.3 metres (or 7′ 6”) tall. That’s taller than the average Canadian (1.7 metres or 5′ 6”)!
  • A Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) employee changes the Peace Tower flag every working day, except during unsafe weather conditions.
  • Flags flown on Parliament Hill never serve another official purpose, regardless of the time spent on the pole.
  • PWGSC started a wait list for requesting flags flown on Parliament Hill in the mid-1990s and began changing the Peace Tower flag daily in 1998 to keep up with the demand.
  • The current wait time for a Peace Tower flag has increased to over 40 years!


Register to Attend CANIMUN 2014

CANIMUN 2014 Poster - January

Registration for CANIMUN is open until February 15!

Register today at to secure your opportunity to engage with Canadian experts, foreign dignitaries and your fellow peers on the Post-2015 Development Agenda and pressing international issues in the nation’s capital!

The United Nations Association in Canada is pleased to present our annual Canadian International Model United Nations (CANIMUN) taking place March 6-9, 2014 at the Ottawa Marriott Hotel in Ottawa, Ontario.

CANIMUN is one of Canada’s foremost empathy-based learning programs, offering university, college and CEGEP students the opportunity to simulate the activities of the United Nations and develop skills in research, writing, negotiation, debate, solution-seeking and diplomacy.  If you’re interested in learning more about international affairs and the work of the UN, all while having fun, this is the conference for you!

What makes CANIMUN 2014 a must-attend conference?

  • The Opening Ceremonies will feature a panel of high-level experts on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, including Corinne Woods, Director of the UN Millennium Campaign and Canadian decision-makers from the public and private sector.
  • Subject matter experts from all sectors will brief delegates on the topics at hand, as well as the skilled use of diplomacy in international relations. In 2013 our experts included: Rafal Rohozinski, CEO of The SecDev Group; Guillermo Rishchynski, Canada’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UN; and Helen Clark, Under Secretary-General and Administrator of the UN Development Programme.
  • Five committees and the International Press Forum reflecting the international community’s focus in 2014: the Post-2015 Development Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals.
  •  As an initiative of UNA-Canada, CANIMUN offers international expertise and opportunity above and beyond other Model UNs.
  •  As the organization leading the Canadian consultations on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, UNA-Canada will be delighted to share the outcomes of CANIMUN, as well as the perspectives and insights of its participants, with the United Nations and our international partners.

Visit our website at for more information and to register.


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