The City of Toronto organizes seven Remembrance Day Ceremonies. Six services take place on November 11, the seventh service, located in Scarborough, takes place the Sunday before Remembrance Day (November 10). Many Royal Canadian Legion Branches and Canadian Forces units also organize ceremonies on November 11th each year.
The City of Toronto constantly updates programming so that it is more representative of all of Toronto’s communities in a more secular way and includes young people as well as members of today’s Canadian Forces. However, the form and Order of Remembrance Day and its essential elements will not change..
The City works closely with local community groups and branches of the Royal Canadian Legion to provide Remembrance Day programming that honours and respects those who have made the ultimate sacrifice protecting our rights and our freedoms in Canada as well as those who have and continue to serve.
The Toronto City Council representative bringing official remarks at each ceremony represents Toronto City Council and the people of Toronto.
Wreaths on behalf of Governments and the Canadian Forces, the Royal Canadian Legion and veterans groups as well as cadets and City of Toronto Divisions and agencies are placed in precedence based on the order established by the Legion (one wreath per organization). Following that, wreaths placed by not for profit, private sector organizations and individuals are placed. Wreaths placed by non-profit groups and citizens are not individually announced.
The City of Toronto reviews the ceremonies each year to ensure that all programs and events are as inclusive as possible and conducted for the benefit of those attending.
The Old City Hall ceremony includes representation from several communities: First Nations, Francophones, a D Day veteran as well as religious groups. Due to the traditional nature of this ceremony, only the Mayor speaks but many other groups are represented through the laying of wreaths to commemorate the dead. .
A cadet will accompany all wreath layers to the cenotaph and assist them in laying their wreath, if required.
Weather permitting, the Canadian Harvard Aircraft Association will conduct a flypast with missing man formation of the Old City Hall ceremony and the East York Civic Centre Ceremony. The Harvards are marking their 75th flying year in 2019. They were used to train members of the Royal Canadian Air Force and others providing coverage on D Day.
In 2019, large screens will be installed on site to enable more people to see the Ceremony at Old City Hall.
For those unable to attend in-person, the City hosts a livestream of the Old City Hall event on the City’s official YouTube Channel. It will feature closed captioning and be available to anyone with an internet or mobile connection.
Books of Remembrance: The City created a Great War Book of Remembrance to commemorate those who died during the First World War and were members of Toronto-based regiments. The City’s Golden Book of Remembrance pays tribute to the war dead from the Second World War. These books contain the names of service people from Toronto who paid the ultimate sacrifice. The public can view the books in the Toronto City Hall rotunda, following the Old City Hall service.
Marking the 75th year since the Normandy invasions by allied forces, a City of Toronto Flag was sent to the Juno Beach Centre in France. The flag that was flown on Juno Beach on April 9, 2019, Vimy Ridge Day, commemorates the heroism and sacrifice of Canadian Troops on
Juno Beach on D-Day. The flag was returned to the City and will fly on the Podium Roof of City Hall each year on Remembrance Day and on June 6.
Road closures will be in effect from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.: