A day to remember, indeed.
Dozens of new Canadians may now recognize July 1 for years to come as the day will bring memories of how they came to call Canada their own.
On Canada Day Friday, more than 100 people that became new Canadian citizens and have called the Tri-Cities home since 2020 gathered for a special ceremony at the Port Moody Legion Branch #119.
The occasion officially expanded the cultural landscape of the country and the city as roughly 30 nations were represented while wearing the maple leaf of their new home.
Everyone in attendance had recited Canada's oath of citizenship virtually the last two years as the COVID-19 pandemic put in-person ceremonies on hold.
"My heart swelled," said Port Moody-Coquitlam MP Bonita Zarrillo in a social media post, who acted one of the hosts for the ceremony.
She believes ceremonies like these can bring the community together with the hope of better days ahead.
"It was incredibly emotional when the spouse of a new Canadian expressed how incredible it will be to look back on this celebration 20 years from now and remembering this celebration and becoming a Canadian."
The gathering included a welcome by Chief Ed Hall to the ancestral territories of the kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem); səl̓ilwətaɁɬ təməxʷ (Tsleil-Waututh); S’ólh Téméxw (Stó:lō); xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam); and Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish) nations.
Some of the new residents also showcased their talents through music and dance of their own culture.
"Canada is a place of opportunities, cultural diversity, health and happiness. This was a special day to bring the community together to meet and build connections," adds Zarrillo.
"We can celebrate, share culture, and bring together community full of diversity and hope. These are the opportunities open to us today and every day, at every age."
The Port Moody gathering was one of many ways communities across the country celebrated Canada's 155th year of confederation this past weekend.
According to Immigration.ca, the nation saw more than 95,000 people become new Canadian citizens in the first quarter of 2022.
The organization states Canada is on pace to seeing 380,000 people recite Canada's citizenship oath by the end of the year, which would be more than double compared to 136,604 from all of 2021.
For more information on Canadian citizenship or how to become one, you can visit the Government of Canada's website.