In-person Canada Day celebrations returned to Ottawa on Friday after a two-year absence due to COVID-19.
Tensions remain high amid a significant police presence, as thousands gathered in the streets of downtown Ottawa where residents continue to grapple with what police have acknowledged is “lingering trauma” from the convoy blockade earlier this year.
“I’m pleasantly pleased to see that it’s calm and quiet here,” said Marilyn Harvey who made the journey to Ottawa from Newfoundland.
“We just thought we’d take everything in stride,” said Rosemary Fife when asked if she was worried about protests.
In normal years, Canada Day festivities draw thousands to the streets around Parliament Hill for concerts, fireworks and parties.
This year, official celebrations are taking place at LeBreton Flats, the festival grounds that are roughly a 20-minute walk west of Parliament Hill.
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