National Winners and Runners-up of the Canada Day Challenge 2013
In 2013, thousands of young people aged 8 to 18, submitted poster designs, digital photographs and pieces of creative writing for an opportunity to celebrate Canada Day 2013 on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa.
We are proud to present the nine finalists of the 2013 Canada Day Challenge...
…. and share the unforgettable journey of our three national winners, Kanika Lawton (Draw it!), MacKenzie Bingle (Snap it!) and Sara Tressa Marrè (Write it!), who won a once-in-a-lifetime 4-day adventure to visit the National Capital Region and experience Canada Day 2013 on Parliament Hill.
During their trip, they were given VIP access to exciting places and they got to meet some of Canada's most exciting and inspiring personalities. On Canada Day, they were front and centre in VIP seating, along with the Prime Minister and other dignitaries, to experience the Noon Show. They also attended the Evening Show followed by the fireworks.
At the close of their trip, our national winners took home many happy memories.
Photos of the trip
On the first day, our three national winners were invited to Laurier House, a Parks Canada historic site, for a special welcome reception, dinner and prize presentation.
Kanika Lawton, national winner in the category Draw it!, posing with her winning entry in the company of her brother and two officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
"When we were greeted by Staff and Royal Canadian Mounted Police, it was truly as sense of WOW!" - The Bingles
MacKenzie Bingle, national winner in the category Snap it!, posing with his winning entry and two officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Sara Tressa Marrè, national winner in the category Write it!, posing with her winning entry and two officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
A very busy day but a very interesting one was planned for our winners on their second day. First a guided tour to Rideau Hall where they had the privilege to meet Their Excellencies the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, and Mrs. Sharon Johnston.
©Office of the Secretary to the Governor General (2013)
"Meeting with Governor General, celebrating Canada Day and the other events I took part in will remain with me for a very long time, and I am thankful I was able to take part in this challenge." - Kanika Lawton
Our three national winners posing with Their Excellencies the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, and Mrs. Sharon Johnston, during their visit to Rideau Hall.
Next, they visited the Royal Canadian Mint where they were treated to a private tour, and they received a commemorative coin. They finished the day by visiting the stables of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and by attending their iconic Sunset Ceremony for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Musical Ride that consists of the execution of a variety of intricate figures and cavalry drill choreographed to music.
Kanika Lawton and Sara Tressa Marrè took the opportunity to pet Royal Canadian Mounted Police horses.
Our three national winners on the grandstand at the Sunset Ceremony of the RCMP Musical Ride.
"My trip to the nation's capital with the other Canada Day Challenge winners was indescribable." - Kanika Lawton
Riders in position during the Musical Ride Sunset Ceremony.
The day before the Canada Day big show on Parliament Hill, the winners were treated to a private guided tour of the Parliament building.
Our three winners during their visit in the House of Commons.
And then, they were invited to a backstage tour of the Canada Day noon show where they met, among entertainers, the artist Marie-Mai and astronaut Chris Hadfield.
Our three national winners on Parliament Hill during their backstage tour of the Canada Day Noon Show.
Our three national winners posing proudly with the artist Marie-Mai.
Astronaut Chris Hadfield performing on Canada Day.
"The museums, festivities, tours and excursions were very well planned and very interesting." - Sara Tressa Marrè
Our three winners on the stage at the same place where the artists gave their performance.
In the afternoon, they visited the Children's Museum of the Canadian Museum of Civilization to see the display of their entries.
And finally, on July 1, 2013, they celebrated Canada Day on Parliament Hill. They participated in several activities from morning until night and attended the great Canada Day Shows as guests of honour.
Sara Tressa Marrè and her family on Canada Day.
Kanika Lawton and her family on Canada Day.
MacKenzie Bingle and his parents on Canada Day.
"Actually it was VIP at everything - Musical Ride, Parliament Hill receptions and displays, Royal Canadian Mint, etc." - The Bingles
MacKenzie Bingle, Kanika Lawton and their families sitting in the VIP section of the Canada Day Noon Show on Parliament Hill on July 1, 2013.
Our national winners have lived unforgettable moments in 2013, an experience they will not soon forget. Will you join us in 2014?
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