The Queen and Prince Philip's Golden Jubilee visit thrilled the crowds who turned out in unseasonably chilly weather Tuesday evening for just a glimpse of the Royal couple.

The pair were entertained by a variety of performers during a walkabout at the Forks market, including school children from Churchill who sang O Canada in Cree and Inuktitut.

Prince Philip charmed the crowd by lifting a barrier to let some children come close to the Queen. The Royal couple often lingered to chat, leaving them a few minutes behind their tightly scripted schedule.

The Forks visit had one glitch; a river taxi transporting the Queen across the Red River broke down and had to be towed ashore. The Queen reportedly told taxi owner Gordon Cartwright that the experience was "interesting."

Also not on the official itinerary was a rally and march by about 200 First Nations people, held both to honour the Queen and to remind her of the conditions aboriginal peoples live under.

The march came to a peaceful end at the Manitoba legislature, where a crowd of several thousand people watched and listened as performers including the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, and Royal Winnipeg Ballet and singer Loreena McKennit performed for the Queen.

Then, with the flick of a switch, the Queen set off a dazzling fireworks display above the Manitoba legislative building. When the smoke cleared, it revealed the gleaming Golden Boy statue, which had spent months undergoing repair and receiving a new coat of gold.

The Queen's public appearance in Winnipeg ended with last night's legislature dinner. However, Prince Philip will spend part of this morning touring the new downtown campus of Red River College.

The Royal couple are scheduled to leave for Toronto this afternoon.

Links related to this story:

  • INDEPTH: The Queen's Golden Jubilee