July 1st was Canada Day - our country's birthday. Together with our American cousins celebrating Independence Day, it is a full weekend of BBQs, parades, pancake breakfasts, fireworks and general mayhem. Our country flags fly proudly everywhere.
The long weekend started with a wonderful breakfast with good friends, Don and Melody Legere. They run a very successful B & B in Niagara on the Lake and are in the top ten
B & B's in the Niagara area. I think what makes Silken Dreams so successful are the hosting qualities of the Legeres and the incredible breakfasts created by Chef Don.
Niagara on the Lake is the centre of one of the most bountiful fresh produce areas in Canada and Don uses all of the freshest local fruits, veggies, eggs and homemade breads from some of our local growers. Icewine finds it's way into the fruit dishes, edible flowers enhance your main egg course and the muffins ..... oh my.... the muffins. Don is French Canadian ... he loves to cook because he loves food. Need I say more? He also loves his mojito ... so at happy hour, he becomes Spanish.
Everyone on Canada Day expresses their love for our great country. This is the one time that Ethel lets her Harold out of the house in this tee shirt.
Some wear more stylish attire but the colors are always red and white.
Meanwhile back at Willow Cakes & Pastries, pastry chef and owner, Catherine O'Donnell is putting the finishing touches on the town's big, bigger, biggest birthday cake ever. I was so lucky to be invited back into the kitchen to catch the final additions to the top of the cake which represents our town. The clock tower, the red double decker bus, the park and all the people were having their own celebration on top of the birthday cake.
Every year, the cake is "marched" in by the Fort George drum and fife corps. Hearts are racing and the excitement builds to a fever pitch.
"Sugar, sugar, sugar......."
The cake is so large it has to be put on the back of a pickup truck.
The cake is taken to the middle of the park where our mayor, our parliamentary representatives and other publicly paid honchos serve the masses their big slice of cake. Because we are Canadians, we wait patiently for our turn but our eyes are glazed....
"Will they run out before they get to me?"
How does your town celebrate your country's birthday?