Veterans Affairs Canada helps fund Canadian Tulip Festival

From: Veterans Affairs Canada

Organized by the Canadian Tulip Legacy, the Festival will run from May 14 to May 24 2021 with both in-person and virtual elements. Thanks in part to this funding, the Festival will feature a virtual initiative entitled Towns of Liberation, focusing both on the stories of the Canadian heroes who served and the towns they liberated. The online program will also feature a social media campaign and a multimedia educational tool kit for students, exploring the special meaning of the tulips.

The funding will be provided through Veterans Affairs Canada’s Commemorative Partnership Program.


“Canada played a major role in the liberation of the Netherlands during the Second World War. Every year, the Canadian Tulip Festival commemorates the sacrifices of Canadian soldiers and symbolizes the unique friendship between the peoples of Canada and the Netherlands. It is also a very important event to Ottawa’s tourism industry and economy. Today’s announcement of up to $135,000 in federal funding for the Canadian Tulip Legacy will allow the Festival to go on safely and virtually. Looking forward to the start of the Festival on May 14 and the beautiful tulips!”

The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Member of Parliament for Ottawa Centre and, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities on behalf of the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence

“The original gift of tulips was given in gratitude to all Canadians by the Dutch People and the Royal Family of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Our mission is to ensure the Canadian Tulip Festival remains free to the public, never forgetting the pivotal role Canadians played in the liberation of the Netherlands, the value of freedom, and the importance of international friendship symbolized by the tulip. The generous support of Veterans Affairs Canada allows the Canadian Tulip Festival to fulfill our mandate while working towards the goal of establishing the Tulip as a springtime celebratory counterpart to the autumnal commemorative Poppy.”

Jo Riding, Executive Director, Canadian Tulip Festival

Quick facts

  • Through the Commemorative Partnership Program, Veterans Affairs Canada supports projects that are designed to honour the contributions and sacrifice of those who have served.

  • The Canadian Tulip Festival was established in 1953 to celebrate the historic Royal gift of tulips from the Dutch to Canadians immediately following the Second World War as a symbol of international friendship.

  • The festival preserves the important role of Canadian troops in the liberation of the Netherlands and Europe, and commemorates the birth of Dutch Princess Margriet in Ottawa during the Second World War.

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