Site Accessibility Statement
Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
May 24, 2015
Canadian Excellence


This section briefly explains the most important Canadian holidays. The university may be closed on these days, and you should consult the university calendars for the exact dates of religious or civic holidays.

New Years Day - January 1.

This holiday is usually a non-religious day to welcome the New Year. The main celebrations occur the evening of December 31st when people see out the old year.The main forms of celebrating are private parties.

Heritage Day

On the third Monday of every February, Canadians across the country explore and celebrate their own personal heritage. Heritage Day is a day about Canada's national heritage.

Easter Sunday

Easter is the most important Christian Holiday. There is no fixed date for Easter since it falls on the Sunday following the first full moon, after the vernal equinox.

Good Friday

The Friday prior to Easter Sunday is an important Christian holiday marking the day Jesus Christ was crucified. Easter Sunday celebrates his resurrection. The university is closed on Good Friday. You will also find that banks and many stores and services are closed on the Monday following Easter.

Victoria Day

May 24 is the celebration of Queen Victoria’s Birthday. To make a long weekend this holiday is on the Monday closest to May 24.

Canada Day

July 1st marks the anniversary of the establishment of the Canadian Confederation in 1867.

Civic Holiday

The first Monday in August is taken as a holiday to provide a long weekend during the summer break.

Labour Day

The first Monday in September is a holiday honouring Canada’s working men and women. Labour Day weekend is regarded as the last weekend of summer. Public schools normally re-open the Tuesday after Labour Day.

Thanksgiving Day

The second Monday in October is the traditional harvest Thanksgiving.

Remembrance Day

November 11 marks the anniversary of the end of the First World War. On this day Canadians honour the fallen in both World Wars and in Korea. Ceremonies to mark this day are held at the University. The university will remain open on that day; however, government offices and banks are normally closed on Remembrance Day.


Christians and non-Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ on Christmas Day, December 25. It is a family holiday, where most families anticipate spending Christmas together. Family and friends exchange the gifts between each other. December 26 is the Boxing Day holiday.

The university is closed for the Christmas break, which also marks the break between the fall and winter terms. You might want to arrange to either travel or take time off for the Christmas break as well as other holidays since there will be minimal activity at the university.

Other events or special days

In addition to these holidays, there are numerous other Canadian festivities, which you might want to participate in:

Halloween - (October 31) where people, especially children, dress up in costumes.

Valentine’s Day -(February 14) where people exchange gifts or tokens of affection with loved ones.

Find out about these festivities and holidays from new Canadian friends, faculty or the International Student Advisor (ISA), and participate in some of the activities!