While the Doug Ford government is taking some heat over its decision to cancel traditional Canada Day celebrations at Queen's Park in Toronto, some residents in Sudbury will receive a July 1 bonus.
The first 500 people to show up at Science North on Canada Day will not only get to take part in the free holiday events on the science centre's grounds, they will get a full-day pass to Science North free of charge, as well.
“Thanks to the Government of Ontario, the first 500 visitors on Canada Day will receive a free Play All Day Passport to visit Science North,” says a post on their website. “The Play All Day Passport includes admission to the science centre including the BODY WORLDS Rx special exhibition, an IMAX film and a planetarium show. Free admission is valid in person on Canada Day only and is on a first come, first serve basis.”
A story in The Toronto Star on Monday said the decision to cancel the July 1 party in Toronto was made months ago and is linked to declining attendance. About 5,000 people attended the Queen's Park even in 2018, compared to 25,000 people in 2009.
Cancelling the Toronto event and offering limited free admission to places such as Science North will also save money – the event usually cost about $400,000, while the free passes will cost about $80,000, the premier's office said.
In addition to Science North, the first 500 people to show up at these attractions July 1 will also get in free: Ontario Science Centre, Cinesphere at Ontario Place, Royal Ontario Museum, McMichael Canadian Art Collection in Vaughan, Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Fort William Historical Park in Thunder Bay, Huronia Historical Parks in Midland and Penetanguishene; Butterfly Conservatory — Niagara Parks Commission and the St. Lawrence Parks Commission.
Science North's free family events begin at noon Canada Day, and include concerts in the evening, and other kid-friendly events during the day, including science demonstrations, hot air balloon rides, face painting and pony rides.
Fireworks, weather permitting, are scheduled to begin at 10:15 p.m.