12 stops on the Winnipeg tour for Prince Charles, Camilla

The Royal couple, Prince Charles and Camilla, are taking an A to Z tour of Winnipeg — from aerospace to the zoo.
Prince Charles and Camilla talk with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Manitoba dignitaries at Stevenson Hangar in Winnipeg on May 21. (Catherine Dulude/CBC)

The Royal couple, Prince Charles and Camilla, are taking an A to Z tour of Winnipeg — from aerospace to the zoo.

They arrived in Manitoba’s capital city Tuesday evening after spending two days in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

It's the final day of the Canadian tour and it will be a full-packed day.

1. Aerospace and Aviation in Manitoba Day (Stevenson Hangar)

Since 2007, approximately 650 Grade 6 students have taken part in the annual Aerospace and Aviation in Manitoba (AAIM) Day event.

The day’s events are designed to introduce students to the concepts they are learning about in school as part of the science module on flight, as well as to the city’s thriving aerospace and aviation industries. This mini‑symposium lets students participate in hands-on activities that focus on four major aspects of the aerospace and aviation sectors: repair/overhaul, manufacturing/composites, space, and flight.

The Royal couple will be joined by the Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife, Laureen. 

2. Winnie the Pooh gallery at Assiniboine Park Pavilion Gallery Museum

The Pooh Gallery, located on the second floor of the Pavilion Gallery Museum, houses a permanent collection of Winnie the Pooh artefacts and memorabilia donated by the MacFarlane family, including pop-up books, toys and figurines. On the feature wall is the famous painting Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Pot by Ernest H. Shepard, the original illustrator of A. A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh books. An original signed copy of the 1927 book Now We Are Six by A. A. Milne is also part of the collection.

A true story, the book ‘Winnie the Bear’, written by Winnipegger Mary Anne Appleby, is the biography of a Canadian black bear named after the city of Winnipeg and adopted by Lt. Harry Colebourn, a veterinarian who was en route overseas at the beginning of the First World War. Colebourn nurtured the young cub at training camps in Valcartier, Quebec, and on the Salisbury Plains in England. Appleby takes readers through Winnie and Colebourn’s journey and through the story of her research, all the more fascinating for her family's connection to Colebourn. Appleby’s insights into the remarkable chain of events in Winnie the Bear’s life reveal the bear’s truly inspirational role in the creation of A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh books.

3. Journey to Churchill exhibit at Assiniboine Park Zoo

Journey to Churchill is the most comprehensive project ever undertaken in Canada aimed at issues related to climate change, polar bears and other northern species. This fully-integrated initiative combines elements focused on research, conservation, education and public display to provide a venue that will bring the North to mainstream Canadians while bridging the gap between field research, the conservation world and the general public.

Journey to Churchill, when completed this summer, will house polar bears — as well as other species — in three distinctive zones along a 10‑acre route. In each zone, visitors experience a variety of landscapes and animal viewing areas. Interactive displays and audio-visual components reinforce the key messages of biodiversity, climate change and conservation.

Journey to Churchill is scheduled to open to the public in July 2014 as the flagship component of the redeveloped Assiniboine Park Zoo.

4. Camilla visits Royal Winnipeg Ballet (RWB)

A leading cultural institution, Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet has earned a national and international recognition for its impassioned artistry and technical virtuosity and has received widespread critical acclaim for extraordinary performances of a diverse classical and contemporary repertoire.

Founded in 1939, the RWB holds the distinction of being the only ballet in North America to hold the “Royal” designation and is also one of the oldest ballet companies on the continent. In 1953, the RWB received its royal title, the first granted under the reign of Her Royal Highness, Queen Elizabeth II.

Under artistic director André Lewis, the RWB has expanded its programming to include bold, innovative new works that embody creative excellence and engage audiences in an ongoing commitment to the vitality of this unique art form. The energy and exuberance of its versatile dances remain the enduring signature of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet as it celebrates 75 years.

5. Prince Charles visits Place Bernadette Poirier (Sara Riel Inc.)

Sara Riel Inc., established by the Grey Nuns of Manitoba in 1977, is a charitable organization offering services for individuals with serious and persistent mental illness. Its community program provides integrated affordable housing, life-skills development and access to medical, social and spiritual supports. Its employment program supports adults who have mental‑health problems as they try to re-enter the workforce and/or sustain employment. As administrators of the provincial portable housing benefit, Sara Riel also offers housing subsidy opportunities for individuals on employment income assistance who have mental‑health issues and who are homeless or at risk of being homeless. Sara Riel offers many workshops designed to meet the needs of the individuals it supports, including housing, spirituality, communication, recovery, nutrition, medication management and change.

Place Bernadette Poirier (PBP), built and run by Sara Riel, combines permanent housing with on-site clinical social workers and life-skills coaches. Residents receive assistance with daily tasks as simple as cleaning their apartment or as complex as doing online banking and managing their mental health. Staff ensure appointments are kept and social connectedness is maintained—all steps that help residents live a healthy and successful life on their own in the community.

Half of the 28 units in the $8.9‑million apartment complex are reserved for people with mental‑health issues and the rest of the apartments are available to the general public. The mixed community is an important step to helping people with mental‑health challenges integrate back into the community. It also provides an opportunity for members of the public to learn more about living with people with mental illness—a condition all too often hidden and stigmatized, although it affects one in five Canadians.

PBP is a partnership between the Province of Manitoba, Manitoba Housing, the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, the Catholic Health Corporation of Manitoba, Sara Riel and the Sara Riel Foundation.

6. Camilla visits Assiniboine Credit Union (ACU)

In 1943, a 23-year-old electrical worker in Winnipeg created Assiniboine Credit Union. Ed McCaffrey, just a few years out of high school, was working for the Winnipeg Electric Company as a trolley driver and didn't like that so many of his workmates were having to use payday money lenders to get by.  Banks were uninterested in helping hard-working families who found themselves in a financial bind – poor working people simply didn’t have the collateral that banks demanded before they would grant a loan.

McCaffrey and three of his colleagues started ACU to help his workmates and 71 years later, at 93, he still takes pride in owning his passbook that boasts ‘Member Number One’, although he now lives in Texas.

Today, his credit union has 24 branches with 110,000 members, over 500 employees and $3.6 billion in assets. It is the largest credit union in Manitoba by membership and branches, and the second largest by assets

The North End branch at Mountain and McGregor was opened in January 2012; ironically the building used to be a bank.  It was abandoned decades ago in a mass exodus when 10 banks abandoned the North End of Winnipeg between 1996 and 2009. By 2010, there wasn’t one full-service bank in the area.

In 2011, when the ACU board and management announced they wanted to open a branch in the North End to serve the underserved, they set a target to raise $6 million in new deposits to establish a branch.  An impressive lineup of community leaders, organizations and individuals came forward swiftly with $16 million in deposits and the branch was instantly financially sustainable.

7. Prince Charles visits AssentWorks – Innovation Alley

AssentWorks is a non-profit workshop dedicated to providing hands-on access to fabrication and prototyping equipment, knowledge, and a community of support for entrepreneurs, inventors, tinkerers, artists and innovators.

It is 100 per cent volunteer-operated, and its passion is to help entrepreneurs, inventors and makers get their ideas off the ground and grow their businesses.

AssentWorks provides 24 /7 access to fabrication tools and prototyping equipment, along with a knowledgeable and enthusiastic community. It has great equipment and educational services for rapid prototyping, 3‑D printing, electronics, woodworking, metalworking, vinyl cutting, laser etching, plastics forming and many other creative disciplines. Combining passions and expertise often sparks opportunities for collaborative projects, mentorship and skills transfer.

An important aspect of AssentWorks, developed by Chris Johnson and Dustin Refvik over the past year, is Ramp Up Manitoba (RUM). RUM is a community of support, providing opportunities for entrepreneurs, developers and designers, focused on increasing the number of technology start‑ups in Manitoba. Its goal is to connect marketable ideas with the talent needed to launch them. Ramp Up Manitoba also holds events, such as Ramp Up Weekends and the CEO Start-Up Crawl. Ramp Up Weekends pull together developers, designers, makers and entrepreneurs to build minimum viable products (MVPs) in 55 hours.

8. Prince Charles attends the launch of ‘the Prince’s Canadian Responsible Business Network’ at Red River College

Prince Charles will meet business leaders who have taken part in his Prince’s Seeing is Believing initiative, as well as to those who have benefited from it.

The PSiB brings corporate leaders face to face with social and economic issues and demonstrates the impact that responsible business can have by closing the gap between the boardroom and the community. Prince’s Charities Canada has launched a series of PSiB programs in Canada, which are run in partnership with the Wellesley Institute. With PSiB, C-suite executives take a day out of their offices and gain a new perspective on social issues. With a focus in Canada on disadvantaged youth, it is breaking new ground in helping to develop training and employment opportunities for a sector of the community that is often overlooked and marginalized.

9. Prince Charles meets the Canadian development and design community and representatives from the Prince’s Foundation for Building Community, at Red River College

The Prince ’s Foundation teaches and demonstrates sustainable development, placing community engagement at the heart of its work. The environment in which people live affects the way they live. The Foundation believes that sustainably planned, built and maintained communities improve the quality of life of everyone who is part of them. They help us to live better at a local level, as well as to start dealing with the broader global challenges of urbanisation and climate change. By actively and passionately promoting traditional principles, as well as understanding the importance of building in a more sustainable way, the Foundation strives for easily achieved improvements in public health and affordable, livelier and safer streets and communities. The goal of The Prince ’s Foundation is a future in which all of us can take part in making our communities more sustainable. It works with everyone from local residents’ groups to governments to make this happen.

10. Prince Charles meets members of the Royal Winnipeg Rifles and the air reserve of Canada

The Prince of Wales is Colonel-in-Chief of seven Canadian regiments or units, two of which are based in the City of Winnipeg – Air Reserve of Canada and the Royal Winnipeg Rifles.  The links between Members of the Royal Family and their regiments go back centuries and demonstrate the deep respect that exits between the Canadian Crown and Her Majesty’s Canadian Armed Forces. 

11. Prince Charles presents long service medals to members of the RCMP

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police is the Canadian national police service and an agency of the Ministry of Public Safety Canada. The RCMP is unique in the world in that it is a national, federal, provincial and municipal policing body. It provides a total federal policing service to all Canadians and policing services under contract to the three territories, eight provinces (except Ontario and Quebec), more than 150 municipalities, more than 600 Aboriginal communities and three international airports.

12. Investiture for the Order of Manitoba followed by an official farewell ceremony, Manitoba legislative building

Established in 1999, the Order of Manitoba is the highest honour in the province of Manitoba. It recognises individuals who have demonstrated excellence and achievement in any field of endeavour and have contributed, in an outstanding manner, to the social, cultural or economic well-being of Manitoba and the nation.

Recipients are selected by an independent advisory council that evaluates all nominations received and then recommends candidates every year to the Chancellor. Appointments to the Order of Manitoba are announced every year by the Lieutenant Governor, as Chancellor, on or about May 12, the date the Manitoba Act was passed by Parliament in 1870. At a formal installation ceremony held on or about July 15—the date that Manitoba entered Confederation, in 1870—the Chancellor presents each member with the insignia of the Order of Manitoba. The advisory council can also change the date of the installation ceremony, as they did this year.

Members are presented with an attractive medal in the form of a stylized crocus, the provincial floral emblem, bearing the shield of Manitoba’s coat of arms surmounted by the Crown. They also receive a lapel pin and a certificate of appointment. Those invested in the Order remain members for life. Members are entitled to wear the insignia of the Order and to use the initials “O.M.” after their name.

Official departure ceremony

Members of the military will play a major role in the Official Departure Ceremony at the Manitoba Legislative Building. In honour of Their Royal Highnesses’ official departure from Canada, full military honours shall be accorded to His Royal Highness by the Canadian Armed Forces. The full military honours include a composite 100‑person Guard of Honour, a military band and a 21‑gun Royal Salute.

The composite Guard of Honour is composed of Regular Force and Reserve Force personnel from the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army and the Royal Canadian Air Force. Some of the service personnel comprising the Guard of Honour are members of the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, including the Guard Commander and Guard Sergeant Major, and the Air Reserve of Canada. These are two units, local to Winnipeg, are directly affiliated to His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, meaning he serves as their Colonel-in-Chief. The Guard of Honour also includes a Flag Party carrying the National Flag and the Canadian Forces Ensign.

The military band is the Royal Canadian Air Force Band, also from 17 Wing. The RCAF Band will be augmented with several additional band members from other military bands serving with Winnipeg‑based Army Reserve and Naval Reserve units. The 21‑gun Royal Salute will be fired by the 26th Field Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery.