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That sword, the mace, the crown shall sleep so soundly as the wretched slave.

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The Front Page is published monthly from Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

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"That sword, the mace, the crown imperial shall sleep so soundly as the wretched slave."

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Dominion Day 2000

06 Apr 2002

Even though the offices of The Front Page were closed for the Dominion Day week-end, the regional staff continued to file stories of local import. Here is one from County Waterloo.

I arrived at the Templehof (Kitchener) District Air Field some time in the late afternoon, fully three hours later than I had intended due in part to motorway construction, and in part to my having made very merry the night before. According to organizers, approximately 14,000 people were in attendance as part of the region's Dominion Day celebration. They said that the pair of 20 metre high flag standards which flanked the approach to the field (each flying Red Ensign banners) could be seen as far away as Galt.

Judging from the crowds, many people came to see the ethnic displays in the "Arms Across The Globe" tents. Especially popular was the Indian pavilion where you could partake of heavily spiced food, coarse peasant dancing, and a ride atop an elephant draped with brightly coloured carpets. Thankfully, coolies were on hand to ensure that drinks were kept topped up, and so despite the sweltering heat, one was able to spend a passable moment or two under the canvas.

A member of Parliament, Mr. Preston Manning was attending the festivities as part of his tour through Southern Ontario to drum up support for his leadership bid for the Canadian Alliance party. While he did not address the crowd en masse, he did engage in a number of freewheeling discussions with individuals. A series of frank and open debates ran long into the evening, not stopping even for the free corn roast dinner.

The highlight of the outing had to be the appearance of a prototype CargoLifter rigid airship, on display as part of a technology showcase for the Cambridge (Ontario) firm that manufactures some of its flight controls. Just before sunset, the airship floated overhead, announced only by its unexpected shadow and the gasps of surprised onlookers. The craft was titanic -- km in length -- and beautiful to see. Its hull was covered in silver fabric which reflected the setting sun's colour as if on fire. The crew boasted that it could easily lift the elephant from the Indian pavilion, plus a number of his fellows! This surely is the transport of the future.

Click here to listen to an eyewitness account of a Zeppelin (you'll need RealAudio)

At about 9:30, the crowd was treated to a display of fireworks. Showers of red and white sparks careered across the sky as the band took up the strains of "The Maple Leaf Forever". And then it was time to go home. As the beams of a hundred of car headlights probed the darkness, my hope was that all citizens of our mighty Empire have had as pleasant a day as I.

Long live the Queen!

Related Sites

Ministry of Transportation, District Ontario
Ministry of Tourism, India
Canadian Alliance Party
CargoLifter (Airship manufacturer)
The Maple Leaf Forever