Activity Ideas

Red, White and Engaging: Canada Day & Independence Day Activities

May 30, 2024

As Canada Day and Independence Day draw near, senior living communities across North America are gearing up for a celebration like no other! From patriotic dining experiences to exciting outings, there's something for everyone to enjoy. Whether your residents are waving the Maple Leaf or the Stars and Stripes, let's dive into eight holiday activity ideas that will ignite the patriotic spirit and create lasting memories for your community!

Dominion Day Dining

Start the holiday off right by hosting an authentic American breakfast with bacon and eggs, or a Canadian breakfast with maple leaf-shaped pancakes with real maple syrup and peameal bacon! Encourage your residents to wear their patriotic colors. Adorn your tables with little flags that residents can wave and hand out flag pins for them to wear. Create a playlist of favorite patriotic songs that they can listen to while dining or better yet, get an entertainer to come in and play those songs live!

Maple Leaf Pancakes
Image via The Food Network

Host an Online Exhibition Program

If the holiday has poor weather, both The Smithsonian and The Canadian Museum of History offer several online exhibitions you can explore with your residents in the comfort of your own community! You can learn about all sorts of things from trusted sources without traveling to the capital.

Museum of History, Ottawa
Image via The Canadian Museum of History

Patriotic Craft Workshop

Gather residents for a fun and creative craft workshop where they can make patriotic-themed decorations to adorn their living spaces or communal areas. Provide supplies such as red, white, and blue paper, craft glue, markers, and stickers, along with templates for making flags, stars (or maple leaves!), and other patriotic symbols. Residents can enjoy the process of crafting together while reminiscing about past holiday celebrations. Display their creations proudly throughout the community to enhance the festive atmosphere.

Schedule a local wine tour

You may be thinking, how is wine a holiday activity? Wine is always a hit and a way to support local. If your community is close to one of the many amazing wine-growing regions in North America, it might be a great time to schedule a bus outing to a local winery or two and taste some wine made right here. Experts there will share how they have worked with the local climate and soil conditions to produce amazing wine and tell great stories!

Local Wine Tour and Outdoor Dining
Image via Wine Country Ontario

Host a fireworks and sparkler display for residents & their loved ones

If your community is lucky enough to have outdoor space, it would be so fun to throw a BBQ and have a fireworks display. Get those hot dogs and hamburgers on the grill, whip up some potato salad, and decorate the outdoors with American or Canadian flags. Before the fireworks, you could do karaoke or a sing-along of Canadian or American classics, such as “Patio Lanterns”, “America the Beautiful” or “This Land is Your Land”. Make sure to grab those sparklers and fireworks for the big BBQ finale!

Image via Popular Mechanics

Attend a baseball game

For the ultimate summer holiday activity, get those baseball gloves and peanuts ready and head over to your local baseball field for one of America’s beloved sports: baseball! It’s a great way to get your residents on an outing and engaged in their community as they cheer on a local baseball team. Foam fingers, hot dogs, cheers — what’s not to love about this sport? Take me out to the ballgame!

Image via S&S Blog

Outdoor Picnic and Parade

Organize an outdoor picnic and parade for residents to enjoy the summer weather and celebrate the holiday in style. Set up picnic tables and blankets in a shaded area of your community's outdoor space and serve classic picnic fare like hot dogs, hamburgers, potato salad, and watermelon. Encourage residents to dress in their most festive red, white, and blue attire and decorate mobility aids like wheelchairs and walkers with patriotic ribbons and flags. After the picnic, lead a festive parade around the community, complete with patriotic music, flag-waving, and plenty of smiles. It's a wonderful opportunity for residents to socialize, enjoy the outdoors, and feel a sense of community spirit.

Suggested Soundtracks

For the Canadians: Patio Lanterns by Kim Mitchell or Summer of 69 by Bryan Adams

For the Americans: Born in the USA by Springsteen or Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd

Geography Trivia Challenge

Schedule a friendly competitive trivia challenge for your residents where they can test their knowledge of national geography. Divide your residents into two teams and put their skills and memory to the test! From questions about capitals and landmarks, to where celebrities and leaders are from, let’s see what your residents got! Truly, this is a holiday activity for July 1 or 4 or anytime!

Image via Far and Wide

Looking for more ideas? Sign in to our Program Portal for over 500 free ideas for July and beyond!

Katie Stewart

Katie is a member of Welbi’s Customer Experience team! She has a background in communications and recreation and is passionate about older adults, exercise, coffee and people.

Holly Mathias

Holly is a member of Welbi’s Marketing team! She has a background in communications and marketing, and is a compassionate individual who loves team work, story telling, and wellness.

Wendy Riopelle

Wendy is a student in the Honours BA in English program at the University of Ottawa, where she has won numerous awards for her writing.

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