The first-ever poppy dates back 100 years ago to 1921, marking 2021 the 100th anniversary of the poppy, with the annual poppy campaign running until November 11th on Remembrance Day. Madame Anna Guérin, later christened “The Poppy Lady from France,” inspired by John McCrae’s poem “In Flanders Fields,” had an idea: to adopt the distribution of the Poppy on Armistice Day as a way to raise money for Veterans’ needs and to remember those who had given their lives during the First World War.
Remembrance Day ceremonies this year are taking place at cenotaphs in communities across Smiths Falls and Lanark County, with a few areas offering their public ceremony in a virtual format as an alternative for those who wish to observe ceremonies from home. Ceremonies will be held in the following communities:
In Smiths Falls, the ceremony will take place beginning at 10 a.m. beside the Senators Rink at the Smiths Falls Memorial Community Centre, at the cenotaph beside the Afghanistan mission LAV III (Light Armored Vehicle). Legion members will lay wreaths at the cenotaph at the Smiths Falls Public Library. A veterans’ dinner will be held at the legion at 6 p.m., members of the public are welcome to attend, with tickets at $20.
The town of Perth will offer a full public ceremony at 10:50 a.m. at the cenotaph on the front lawn of the Great War Memorial hospital site of the Perth and Smiths Falls District Hospital.
The town of Almonte is encouraging people to observe its Remembrance Day ceremony from home this year. They will be livestreaming the ceremony, that takes place on Bridge Street, at 11:00 a.m. via the Almonte Legion Facebook page www.facebook.com/branch240
In Carleton Place, Remembrance Day ceremonies will begin with the local Legion Branch Colour Party forming up at the corner of Veterans Way and Judson Street and marching to the Cenotaph at 10:45 a.m. The Colour Party will be led by Piper Cameron Ellis, Sgt-At-Arms Mark Bissonette and Parade Commander Peter Schaffer, President of Branch 192. The Captain A. Roy Brown Branch 192 will be live streaming the Ceremony through Facebook for students, and anyone who wishes to participate from home, as well.
A ceremony for Remembrance Day will also be held at 1:00 p.m. on November 11 at Beckwith Park located at 1319 9th Line, Beckwith.
Covid protocols may vary within each community for in-person gatherings.
The Royal Canadian Legion encourages all Canadians to wear a Poppy and observe two minutes of silence on November 11, to mark the sacrifices of the many who have fallen in the service of their country, and to acknowledge the courage of those who still serve.
Lest we forget.