Get Out!

Packed with good music and named after a temperature-related ailment; Sunstroke carries all the features of a respectable Whitehorse music festival. The Pack A.D. bring a refreshing wave of garage rock, almost like the rebellious love child of the White Stripes and the Black Keys.


Get Stroked

Packed with good music and named after a temperature-related ailment; Sunstroke carries all the features of a respectable Whitehorse music festival.

The Pack A.D. bring a refreshing wave of garage rock, almost like the rebellious love child of the White Stripes and the Black Keys.

The Whiskeydicks, bring their beer-soaked Irish rock back to the Yukon stage.

The finest local musicians will be well-featured, including one of the last performances by Franco-rockers Soir de Semaine.

Friday from noon to midnight at Shipyards Park.

All proceeds benefit the Mae Bachur Animal Shelter. Kids 12 and under are free.

You had me at “inflatable castle”

A multicultural theme blankets Saturday’s proceedings at Shipyards Park.

The festival standards of face painting, food and handicraft stands will be keenly featured.

Steady games of petanque—the French equivalent to bocce ball—will be underway.

And, of course, there’s an inflatable jump castle.

At night, catch performances from Franco-Ontarian musician Damien Robitaille, New Orleans-style Zydecoists Johhny Cajun and Whitehorse-based Furia Nova.

Saturday from 11 a.m. to midnight at Shipyards Park.

Kimonos and saris, together at last

The Whitehorse Heritage Festival is presenting its annual Fashion Show.

Saturday, 4 p.m. at the Yukon Arts Centre

Heritagin’ on a Sunday afternoon

Sunday, the Whitehorse Heritage Festival wraps up the weekend with a leisurely string of “family themed” entertainment.

Sales of food and crafts will be plentiful, whilst multicultural dances and performances will swirl across the Shipyards Park stage.

At 7, multi-cultural minstrels JouTou cap off the weekend.

Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Shipyards Park.

Non-sheep reason to drive to Faro

BBQs, bingo, open houses, live music and a giant lead-zinc mine—Faro is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

One of Canada’s youngest towns is pulling out all the stops. Family golf tournaments, a midnight swim and the always-exciting spectacle of an emergency vehicle display.

Don’t miss a chance to take a tour of the Faro minesite.

Once the largest open pit lead-zinc mine in the world, the toxin-laced pit has now become one of the most expensive mine remediation projects in Canadian history.

After 500 years of constant maintenance, officials expect the highly contaminated site to finally be rendered harmless.

Highlights of the tour include the giant (270 million tonnes) pile of waste rock, and the equally giant hole, from which the waste rock was extracted.

“It is quite spectacular,” Faro community development co-ordinator Daniel Steiner told a Canadian Press reporter.

“It’s as if you’re walking on the moon.”

July 1 to 5 in Faro.

Maple Leaf Rag

After two days of no-music-festival interlude, Shipyards Park will once again explode with mirth to celebrate Canada’s birthday.

A citizenship ceremony caps the celebration.

Local musicians will dominate the catalogue, but stay tuned for out-of-towners Michael Red and Max Ulis, and Proverbial (direct from Richmond, Virginia).

Punk to metal to good old-fashioned rockabilly—all musical tastes will be appealed to by the Canada Day concert.

At 10 p.m. catch a reunion performance by ‘80s tribute band Pegasus Wing, still Whitehorse’s favourite hype-mongers.

The price is right: it’s free.

Wednesday, noon to midnight at Shipyards Park.

Beer gardens, operated by the Legion, run from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.


Long Walk to C.C.

During the gold rush, Canyon City was a favoured stopping point for Klondike-bound river travellers.

Once the railroad was completed, the entire town was either shipped to Whitehorse or pushed into the river.

All summer long, the Yukon Conservation Society is leading twice-daily free tours of the area.

Mix in a bit of history and a bit of ecology, and middens of old cans suddenly become an attractive place to spend an afternoon.

Every day until August 22. Hikes depart at 10 a.m and 2 p.m.

“No lights allowed”

With darkness in short demand these days, it’s about time we had a 24-hour mountain bike relay.

For 1,440 minutes cyclists will repeatedly navigate the course’s 14.5-kilometre track—located in the woods at the Mount McIntyre Recreation Centre.

“More than 50 per cent singletrack!”

The mountains may have elevation on their side, but the riders will be amply fortified with cheap, hearty beer.

Saturday and Sunday, 12 p.m. to 12 p.m.

Death walk

Sometimes, the best way to feel truly alive is to marvel at the deaths of others.

For more than 100 years, downtown Whitehorse’s pioneer cemetery has provided a ready supply of local dead people.

However, the cemetery is in rough shape.

No consecutive records of burials were ever kept, and in the early 1980s, someone thought it was a good idea to remove all the wooden grave markers.

Luckily, summer tour guides are back to give you the skinny on Whitehorse’s most mysterious burial ground.

Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 3:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. Meet at the Old Log Church Museum.


2,467,265,690 acres of snow

In 1864, high-level representatives from across British North America consumed $13,000 worth of champagne at a conference in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

By the end of the week, they had decided to found a country.

Within three years, Queen Victoria agreed, and gave her approval to the new country of Canada.

Canada’s first prime minister, John A. MacDonald, received the Queen’s assent while still recovering from severe burns.

Weeks earlier, the father of Confederation had accidentally lit his London hotel room bed on fire.

On July 1st, 1867, amid fireworks, cascading champagne corks, brass bands and military displays, the new Dominion of Canada was inaugurated.

After 142 years, numerous territorial expansions, waves upon waves of new immigration and hundreds of patriotic beer commercials, the Dominion is still going strong.

“Canada is the best country in the world!” is the common exultation of the Canada Day reveller.

(Note: residents of Finland, Norway, France, Germany, Ireland, Australia, UK and the United States also refer to their country as the “best in the world.”)


Splash Mountie

Mounties may stand on guard for thee, but for years, they were at a loss to stand on guard for their own image.

For years, the red-serged, wide-brimmed, yellow-panted image of Canada’s RCMP was un-copyrighted, leaving it open to unauthorized use by everyone from kitsch manufacturers to porn stars.

On June 27, 1995, in a controversial decision, the RCMP awarded all licensing rights to the Walt Disney Company.

Disney suits immediately took the boots to unauthorized Mountie merchandising—and began collecting royalties on the RCMP’s behalf.

The agreement expired in 2000. Copyright is now managed by the RCMP foundation.

The Mounties now have enough knowledge and experience with commercial licensing to protect the image on their own, said RCMP representatives.

Finders keepers

Using only a plaque and a highly motivated civil servant, Canada laid claim to its entire Arctic archipelago 100 years ago this Wednesday.

“This memorial is erected today to commemorate the taking possession for the Dominion of Canada of the whole Arctic Archipelago.”

So reads the plaque erected on Canada’s Melville Island by Quebec-born mariner and low-level government employee Joseph-Elzear Bernier

In one fell swoop, Bernier seized tens of thousands of hectares of Northern territory without a fight.

After firing a 20-shot salute to the plaque, Bernier immediately started informing nearby Inuit that they were Canadian.

Just to sweeten the claim, Bernier’s crew also sailed to other Arctic islands and put up some Union Jacks.

In August of 2007, Russia asserted its claims to the High Arctic by planting a Russian flag at the North Pole.

“You can’t go around the world and just plant flags and say, ‘We’re claiming this territory,’” said Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay.

Saving paper

The life expectancy of a dollar-bill is only nine months. Coins, on the other hand, last 20 years.

So went the doctrine underlying the federal government’s decision to start minting Canada’s mass-use $1 coin.

Strangely, the unfortunately named loonie was never actually supposed to contain the image of a loon.

Designers originally planned to update the image of two voyageurs in a canoe, which was already in use on Canada’s silver dollar.

The refurbished die was struck in Ottawa, and scheduled to be shipped to Winnipeg for manufacturing.

Breaching security protocol, Canadian mint officials shipped the die with a low-priced courier and didn’t even bother to ask for identification before handing off the package.

The courier—and the dies—were never seen again.

Sheepish mint officials quickly threw together the bird-themed design, shipped it appropriately, and a Canadian icon was soon born.

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