Celebrate Quebec's Fête Nationale with free events

June 24 is Quebec's official holiday - la Fête Nationale - and there are free parties right across the province to celebrate what was traditionally known as St-Jean-Baptiste Day.

Biggest St-Jean-Baptiste parties set for Montreal's Place des Festivals, Plains of Abraham in Quebec City

The Fête Nationale parade in Montreal starts at 1 p.m. at Ste-Catherine and Guy streets. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press)

June 24 is Quebec's official holiday - la Fête Nationale - and there are free parties right across the province to celebrate what was traditionally known as St-Jean-Baptiste Day.

There are public events planned in most municipalities right across the province June 23 and 24.

Le Grand Spectacle

June 23 at 8 p.m. at the Place des Festivals, QW4RTZ will be on stage for Le Grand Spectacle de Montréal. Then at 9 p.m., Éric Lapointe, Yann Perreau, Brigitte Boisjoli, Les soeurs Boulay and more will keep the party going.

After the show, the party continues on St-Denis Street with a number of bars and restaurants hosting special activities.

Parade on Friday 

Friday's parade is called le Défilé and starts at Ste-Catherine and Guy streets at 1 p.m. It continues east on Ste. Catherine Street to de Bleury Street near Place des Festivals.

Other events around Montreal

  • Concerts are planned for La Fontaine Park June 23 starting at 1 p.m. and on June 24, clowns, drummers and musical acts take over the park starting at noon.
  • Tonnes of family-friendly activities are planned for Dollard-des-Ormeaux Park starting at 5 p.m. June 23, including face-painting, folk music and fireworks.
  • Starting at 6 p.m. June 23 in Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, there will be a treasure hunt, bands and a giant cake.
  • On June 24 at Benny Park in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, there will be a barbecue and family picnic, along with other activities, starting at 1 p.m. 
  • Laurier Park in the Plateau-Mont-Royal is playing host to musicians and marionettes starting at noon June 24.
  • In Beaconsfield, activities are planned for Centennial Park (288 Beaconsfield blvd) starting at noon which include educational activities and a circus show. 

Quebec City 

In honour of the Fête nationale du Québec a number of cultural institutions are opening their doors June 23 and 24 to be part of the Parcours du solstice.

Visitors are invited to explore Quebec's art and architecture at various cultural institutions while navigating a specially designed route full of themed activities.

The Plains of Abraham is the scene of the Fête Nationale concert in Quebec City on June 23. (Clement Allard/The Canadian Press)

On the evening of June 23 there will be a big concert on the Plains of Abraham featuring Jonas, Marie-Mai and other homegrown acts.

Following the show, there will be fireworks starting at 11 p.m.