Expect La Belle Ville to be breathless this May 17. Partly because of the 375 candles the city has to put out for its birthday, and partly because of all the celebrations happening in its honour through to the weekend! Montréal was cofounded by Sieur de Maisonneuve and Jeanne Mance on May 17, 1642 – a fact that’s certainly worth toasting.
A day of celebrations
The May 17 events start at City Hall with an 8 a.m. Inspection of the Guard of the Régiment de Maisonneuve by the Mayor of Montréal. At 8:15 the guard will march to the Notre-Dame Basilica for the ringing of the bells, which will toll at 8:45, first at the Saint Joseph’s Oratory, and then in churches all over town, including the basilica. At 9 a.m. there will be a multi-faith mass at the basilica with representatives of Canada’s First Nations, followed by a tribute to the city’s founders at the Maisonneuve Monument at 10:30 a.m., complete with a Mohawk drum ceremony.
AVUDO honours the St. Lawrence
Starting with a sold-out public premiere at 9 p.m. on May 17, and running until September 2, you can’t miss Montréal AVUDO. The spectacular multimedia show was created for the city’s 375th anniversary to pay tribute to the St. Lawrence River. Taking place on the very water in Montréal’s Old Port, this poetic performance promises to wash over all your senses. Book your (free) spot now!
Jacques-Cartier lights the way
See the Jacques-Cartier Bridge in a whole new light when Living Connections launches on May 17 starting at 9:45 p.m. The massive lighted choreography now installed in permanence by Montréal magic makers Moment Factory in honour of the city’s 375th anniversary reacts to the city’s moods and movements. Who knew the iron giant could be even more spectacular?
The Giants celebrate big
From May 19 to 21, Montréal will become the stage for this one-of-kind encounter with giants. Montrealers and visitors will meet The Royal de Luxe Giants, colossal, exquisite living sculptures that bring together the small and the fantastically big, and the world of yesterday with the city of today. Don’t forget to look up!
Travel back in time to New France
Drop by Place Royal May 19 to 22 for a truly historic experience at Encounters in New France. This free and festive event, organized by Pointe-à-Callière, Montréal’s Archaeology and History Complex, lets you experience what daily life was like under the French regime. Stroll through the outdoor market, chat with costumed craftspeople, enjoy performances, try traditional fare at food stands and more. Even the Giants will be dropping by!
Up next:The Giants by Royal de Luxe