Here's how you can mark Remembrance Day 2020 in Hamilton and the surrounding area

COVID-19 means Remembrance Day will look a little different for many this year. Here's how you can participate in a service in Hamilton and surrounding areas, while protecting vulnerable veterans and other residents.

Virtual ceremonies and Lancaster flyovers will offer residents a chance to remember

Residents in Hamilton and the surrounding area are being asked to observe Remembrance Day virtually this year because of COVID-19. (Neil Cochrane/CBC)

COVID-19 means Remembrance Day will look a little different for many this year.

Here's how you can participate in a service in Hamilton and surrounding areas, while protecting vulnerable veterans and other residents.


The city will not be holding any public services for Remembrance Day.

Instead, people are invited to take in a virtual service on Wednesday from 10:30 to 11:15 a.m.

Residents can watch the ceremony on  Cable 14 or the city's YouTube channel.

Officials have also barred public wreath laying because of the virus, but say anyone who wishes to have a wreath laid on their behalf can drop it off at the Military Museum in Dundurn Park from noon to 4 p.m. up until Tuesday.

While there will be no military parades or large gatherings at any of Hamilton's cenotaphs, the Lancaster will do a flyover of the city and area to mark the day.

The Avro Lancaster is a Second World War plane, and only two in the world remain airworthy. One is at the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum in Ancaster. 

CHCH-TV is also broadcasting the annual Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum ceremony starting at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday. 


Remembrance Day in Burlington is also going virtual and residents are being asked to watch from home.

The 35-minute ceremony will include a colour guard, two minutes of silence and music performed by members of the Burlington Teen Tour Band and Flanders Fields.

People can watch via a live stream from the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 60 beginning at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

Residents are asked not to go to the city's cenotaph because of COVID-19 concerns. Officials say only those directly involved in the service will be there and will be following safety measures, including physical distancing.

"Since 1921, the poppy has stood as a symbol of peace and remembrance. It is our visual pledge never to forget our fellow Canadians who have fallen in defence of our country's values and ideals," said Bob Ankrett, a member of Royal Canadian Legion Branch 60, in a media release.

"Since gathering at our memorial during these troubled COVID days is no longer possible, let us pause at 11 a.m. on Nov. 11 and remember those who have fallen."


Residents in Brantford are being asked to remember and honour veterans safely this year.

The city has adapted its plans around COVID-19 gathering restrictions, but has supplied a list of ways people can still pay their respects.

An overnight light display at the Brant County War Memorial will be lit up from 6 p.m. Tuesday to 7 a.m. Wednesday and anyone can drive by to view it.

People can also watch the National Remembrance Day ceremony in Ottawa at 10:45 a.m. online and are invited to step outside and "Look Up and Remember" between 11:20 and 11:35 a.m. as vintage planes, including the Lancaster, fly over Brantford.

The city also has plans to upload a series of videos on its Facebook page showing clips from past Remembrance Day ceremonies and present-day officials and dignitaries laying wreaths at the cenotaph.

Brant County

In Brant County, private events are planned via the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 29 in Paris and Branch 605 in St. George.

The Paris event can be watched on YouTube, and the St. George event on Facebook and at stgeorgelegion.ca.

Branch 543 in Burford is holding a private ceremony.

Niagara Region

In Niagara Falls, the regular services at the Gale Centre and Chippawa Arena have been combined into a small, outdoor ceremony with a limited number of pre-screened participants.

Anyone who wishes to follow along remotely can watch a live stream beginning at 10:45 a.m.

St. Catharines is also organizing a small gathering of Legion members at Merritt Park.

The ceremony is by invitation only in order to maintain physical distancing, according to the city.

No parade will be held and residents are asked to watch the ceremony at 11 a.m. on the city's Facebook page or Instagram.

Grimsby's Remembrance Day ceremony will also be a smaller-than-usual affair because of the pandemic.

People can watch a live stream on the town's Facebook page starting at 10:45 a.m. and are encouraged to step outside at 11 a.m. to share two minutes of silence.


Norfolk is doing something new this year in honour of Remembrance Day.

Starting at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, the war memorial in Simcoe will be lit up with the names, ages and pictures of the 406 people from the county who died in in the First World War, Second World War and Afghanistan.

The service will be broadcast online on the  Norfolk County Heritage and Culture Facebook and YouTube pages.

Haldimand County, meanwhile, says there will be small, private ceremonies.