Statement on National Fiddling Day

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Honourable senators,

I am extremely pleased to speak today in recognition of National Fiddling Day, which falls on the third Saturday in May.  It was incredibly gratifying for me when my bill to establish this special day received Royal Assent two years ago, and since then, the day has taken off.  This Saturday right across the country, fiddlers and music-lovers will be coming together to share their enthusiasm for fiddle music.

In my home province of PEI, the Prince County Fiddlers will play an evening concert.  In Ottawa, City Hall will host a giant fiddle jam session.  There will be fiddling in Yukon, on the East Coast, and out West. I encourage you to find out what events might be occurring in your own provinces and territories.

Here on Parliament Hill, the festivities occur through the week.  If you have a free moment to step outside tomorrow at noon, the Dominion Carilloneur, Dr. Andrea McCrady, will be playing a collection of tunes – including the one called “Fiddle Bill” – on the Peace Tower Carillon.

I also hope that you and your staff will stop by the National Fiddling Day reception tomorrow afternoon in the East Block Courtyard.  We will be showcasing an excellent group of fiddlers and stepdancers, including Kelli Trottier, who will play her new Canada 150 tune. You can enjoy some great entertainment and tap your toes, and feel free to dance a few steps.

Fiddling has a rich history in our country, and there is no doubt that Canadians from coast to coast to coast share a love for fiddle music.  You can find fiddles almost anywhere, from church basements to Legion halls, from nursing homes to local pubs, to right here on Parliament Hill.

When I started the journey to establish National Fiddling Day, I hoped that it would provide an opportunity for fiddlers to give back to their communities, to entertain and to share their talents.  I think it has, and I hope the festivities continue to grow in the years to come.

Thank you.


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