Windsor

Windsor residents show huge Canada Day spirit

There was an overwhelming amount of pride today in Windsor for Canada`s 150th birthday. Events all around the city showed off the enthusiasm local residents had for the country.

Citizenship ceremony, newborn babies, parades and more

Windsor residents watch as the Canada Day parade strolls down Wyandotte Street East. (Meg Roberts/CBC News)

There was an overwhelming amount of pride today in Windsor for Canada`s 150th birthday. Events all around the city showed off the enthusiasm local residents had for the country.

The day started out with special citizenship ceremony. Forty people from 13 different countries were sworn in as Canadian citizens on Canada's 150th.

The Dewan family was part of today's ceremony. They purposely picked Canada's 150th to become official citizens. The family came to Canada five years ago from India to provide a better life for their young girls. They said this will be a day they will never forget.

"We are really proud to be here attending such an important ceremony in one of the most important days in Canada's history," said Naveet Dewan. "We are proud to be Canadian."

The Dewan family celebrates becoming Canadian citizens during a special citizenship ceremony at the Windsor International Aquatic Centre. (Meg Roberts/ CBC News)

Their oldest daughter was all smiles as she received her citizenship document and shook the hand of the presiding official for the ceremony.

"I've always wanted to change the world...Now I feel more like I can do it," said Ashiya.

Naveet Dewan's in-laws came all the way from India to see their children and grandchildren become citizens. They were also looking forward to attending other Canada Day events.

The hospital was also in the Canada Day spirit. It was giving out tiny red and white knitted hats to newborns to mark the country's birth date.

Daniel and Veronica Boiciuc's baby was the first one born in Windsor on this special day. 

Daniel and Veronica Boiciuc gave birth to the first baby born in Windsor on Canada Day. (Meg Roberts/CBC News)

The little girl was born at 4:11 a.m and weighed 7 pounds 13 ounces. Mom and Dad say she will be welcomed into the family with six other brothers and sisters.

"She was due on July 2 but for good reasons I guess she decided to come out a little earlier and make Canada happy," said an excited but tired dad. "We are happy to have her and raise her in Canada, this great nation."

Just a few roads over from the hospital the streets were filled with red and white as thousands of people lined the sides of Wyandotte St. East. People were decked out in their Canadian gear, waving, smiling and yelling as colourful floats and entertaining acts went by. 

Alice Aliu couldn't help but to get up and dance when the Caribbean float passed by her playing loud music. Aliu was wearing a traditional African dress with little red maple leafs embroidered on it.

Alice Aliu (left) gets in the Canadian spirit by wearing a white and red dress made in Nigeria. (Meg Roberts/CBC News)

Aliu says she likes celebrating her home roots but today was all about being Canadian.

"It means a lot, it means freedom, nice weather, nice people, friendly, good country to live in," said Aliu.

Jessica Charron was part of a float in the parade. The group performed a number of multicultural dances. She says today is about celebrating the wonderful country she was born in.

"We love Canada and everything that it has to offer… I think overall we are just an amazing country," said Charron.

Many of those parade goers walked on down to the Riverfront Festival Plaza where hundreds of people sang the national anthem in unison.

Choirs from all over the region gathered on the stage to belt out 'Oh Canada'.

Choirs from all over the region join together to sing the national anthem on the stage at Riverfront Festival Plaza. (Meg Roberts/CBC Windsor)