The Civic Holiday is the first Monday in August through most of Canada, known by various names from place to place. Here in Ottawa it's Colonel By Day, named for the British military engineer who designed and oversaw the building of the two hundred kilometre Rideau Canal system and founder of the city. The Colonel's statue is placed in Major's Hill Park, looking down towards the Canal and the Bytown Museum, nestled between here and Parliament Hill. Colonel By is widely respected here these days, but he ended his days in Britain having had fallen from grace, as a recent news article pointed out. The Canal project went over budget, and officials in Britain chastised him for that. In fact, the original budget had been far less than the job required, and Colonel By's careful work has resulted in a system that remains in place today in much the same form as it is today. In hindsight, the man should have been knighted for his work, instead of dying feeling he'd been cast out.
I came down to the Ottawa Locks to take in some of the activities going on around the Museum. One of the eight locks here where the Canal meets the Ottawa River was occupied by boats heading up into the Canal. The Chateau Laurier is on the other side.
I give you a gratuitous beaver shot.
This was fun as I made my way down the path- this person wearing a dinosaur costume was walking around. You could see their legs, but the whole look of the costume certainly brought out smiles in onlookers.
Here are members of the 100th Regiment of Foot, a re-enactor group based here in the Ottawa area that I've featured before. They were present through the day, doing shooting demonstrations at times on the east side of the Canal.
Also on the east side is a panel beside the Celtic Cross. The memorial was placed here in memory of over 1000 people who died during the building of the Canal from 1826-1832. Many of the six thousand builders were Irish; their legacy remains in the Canal itself, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.