Joint Actions for Hiroshima and Nagasaki Commemorations Across Canada

Following is an up-dated summary of forthcoming peace actions for Hiroshima and Nagasaki Day commemorations. Please make corrections and up-dates. The list is not complete and some cities may still be missing. Please send corrections and event information up-dates to Anton Wagner, Toronto Hiroshima Day Coalition, 416-863 1209; fax: 416-863 9973;

The suggestion has been made that groups across-Canada organizing commemorations issue a joint call asking Parliament to take a lead on negotiating an international nuclear weapons abolition convention and to re-establish Canada’s former international role in peacebuilding by establishing a Department of Peace.

Peace actions that we are aware of so far include:

August 2:

Press conference by Halifax Peace Coalition. Contact: Tamara Lorincz

Saturday, August 4:

Vancouver: David Laskey from Veterans Against Nuclear Arms has arranged to have Mayor Sam Sullivan declare August 6 as Hiroshima Day in the City of Vancouver and for the Mayor to read his Proclamation on Saturday August 4th at the opening ceremonies of the Powell Street Festival, an annual event that celebrates the Japanese Canadian contribution to Canadian life.


VSA9, Vancouver Save Article 9, a group organizing to stop the Japanese government from changing Article 9 of the Japanese constitution that prohibits warmaking, hold an A-bomb and Humanity exhibition August 4 and 5 in conjunction with the Powell Street Festival.

Contact: Eiichiro Ochiai

Sunday, August 5:

Montreal: Hiroshima is Montreal’s twin city and in 1998 donated a Peace Bell to the Montreal Botanical Garden as a symbol of peace and eternal friendship between the two cities. An annual peace ceremony has been organized by the Japanese Pavillion of the Botanical Garden with the support of the City of Montreal since then. Often the mayor or a representive and the Consul General of Japan are present. The ceremony is held in the evening, August 5, at 7 pm to correspond with the commemorative ceremony taking place in the Peace Park in Hiroshima, on August 6. The Peace Bell in the Japanese Garden will ring 62 times throughout the day of August 6. Everyone is invited to come to the August 5 Japanese Garden commemoration starting at 7 pm to remind us of the importance of world peace.

Contact: General information, Montreal Botanical Garden,

514-872 1400 or Karine Jalbert, Communications Coordinator, 514-872 1453,

Midland-Penetang, Ontario: Peaceworks commemorates Hiroshima Day at the Penetang Peace Garden on Rotary Trail. Potluck picnic at 5.30; commemorative ceremony at 7.00pm with a presentation by James Bacque, “A Modest Proposal: Eliminate War By Privatizing It,” music and the Orillia Raging Grannies. Learn to make an origami crane. Contact: Elizabeth O’Connor

Monday, August 6:

Halifax: The third annual Peace Day takes place from 3 to 4:30 pm in the World Peace Pavilion at the Dartmouth Waterfront Park near Alderney Landing. (In the event of rain the event will be inside the terminal building of the passenger ferry from Halifax to Dartmouth). The program includes a youth performance of the play “One Thousand Cranes,” speakers including MP Alexa McDonough, and the Raging Grannies. Organized by Physicians for Global Survival, Voice of Women for Peace and the Halifax Peace Coalition.

Contact: Tamara Lorincz or

Ottawa: A commemoration of the 61st Year Since the Nuclear Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki will be held at 7 pm at the Friends Meeting House.

Includes a power point presentation “Sixty years of Struggles by Canadians to Ban Nuclear Weapons,” a general discussion of initiatives being taken today for this purpose and what individuals can do towards banning the bonb, community singing and a walk to the pond by the Canal to float handmade lanterns.

Sponsored by the Ottawa Monthly Meeting of Friends (Quakers) in collaboration with Physicians for Global Survival and the Ottawa branches of Project Ploughshares and Religions for Peace.

Contact: Murray Thomson, Debbie Grisdale, Jordan Bishop,

Toronto: The Toronto Hiroshima Day Coalition organizes the annual Hiroshima Day Commemoration at the Toronto City Hall Peace Garden from 6:30 to 9 pm with Veterans Against Nuclear Arms. This year’s commemoration, entitled “Paths to Hope” to emphasize concrete steps that can be taken to achieve the elimination of nuclear weapons, is MC’ed by Phyllis Creighton from Science for Peace.

Councillor Raymond Cho will read Mayor David Miller’s Toronto Hiroshima Day Proclamation. Prayers for peace from Father Damian MacPherson, President of the Toronto Area Interfaith Council, Imam Abdul Hai Patel from the Council of Imams of Canada, and representatives from the Toronto Buddhist Church and the Bahai Community will be presented. Physicians for Global Survival will present the Toronto launch of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.

Hiroshima survivor Setsuko Thurlow will read peace poems by Kurihara Sadako.

The City of Hiroshima Peace Proclamation will be read as well as the 50th anniversary Pugwash Conference statement. Following speakers from Veterans Against Nuclear Arms, the Toronto Disaster Relief Committee and the federal Department of Peace initiative, MP Peggy Nash will speak on the federal government and peacebuilding. The Yakudo Traditional Japanese Drummers and the Raging Grannies will perform. A lantern ceremony will conclude the event.

Sponsored by the Hiroshima Day Coalition, the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre, Veterans Against Nuclear Arms, Physicians for Global Survival, Voice of Women, and the Older Women’s Network.

Contact: Anton Wagner,


Winnipeg: The peace movement in Winnipeg has commemorated Hiroshima Day regularly for about twenty years with speakers, making cranes and lanterns and speakers talking about the reason for the commemoration before a lantern ceremony at twilight.

Contact: Darrell Rankin at the Peace Alliance Winnipeg,

Saskatoon: Veterans Against Nuclear Arms organizes a screening of the full-length documentary Veterans Against Nuclear War filmed in Canada and in Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the Broadway Theatre at 7 pm. The event is also sponsored by the Saskatoon Peace Coalition and Project Ploughshares.

Contact: Betsy and John Bury,

Grand Forks, BC: The Boundary Peace Initiative in the B.C. Southern Interior is hosting a Hiroshima Day Commemoration at 1 pm in Gyro Park (next to the Boundary Museum) with presentations on Uranium Mining and Exploration impacts along with a fundraiser for our group. The Boundary/Kootenay/Okanagan is threatened with mining of the known deposits of uranium in our areas. Our youth will do chalk silhouettes throughout the downtown on August 5th (it’s easier than the water soluble paint that caused issues with City Council a few years ago). We are a member of the B.C. Southern Interior Peace Coalition, the Canadian Peace Alliance, Abolition 2000, Lawyers Against the War, Uranium Free B.C., Uranium Free Kootenay Boundary and an affiliate of the Fellowship of Reconciliation as well as working with other local, national and international groups.

Contact: Laura Savinkoff,

Salt Spring Island, BC: Continuing an over 25-year tradition of marking Hiroshima Day, this year’s event takes place in the peace park across from Artspring, 10am-2pm (lanternmaking); 7:30 pm (gathering)

Contact: Jan Slakov

Thursday, August 9:

Fredericton commemorates Hiroshima Day with Lantern Night: A Vigil Against Nuclear Weapons, at 8:30 pm at the Peace Pole, near the Walking Bridge, south side Fredericton. (In the event of rain, the event will be held at Conserver House, 180 St. John St.) The program includes speakers from the local chapters of Project Ploughshares, Veterans Against Nuclear Arms and the Fredericton Peace Coalition, and poetry and music.

Contact: or


Hamilton: The annual Hiroshima-Nagasaki Memorial Observance takes place at 7 PM in the Hamilton City Hall Council Chamber. The Guest Speaker will be Prof. Graeme MacQueen, Founder, Centre for Peace Studies, McMaster University, speaking on “The Crisis of Civilization and the Need for Imagination.”

Presented by the Hamilton chapter of Project Ploughshares and co-sponsored by Amnesty International Group One, the Hamilton Mundialization Committee, United Nations Association in Canada, Ghandi Peace Festival, Physicians for Global Survival, Interfaith Council for Refugees and Human Rights, McMaster University Centre for Peace Studies, Hamilton Culture of Peace Network, Operation Lifeline and Food Not Bombs.

Contact: Leonor Sorger,

Powell River, BC: Powell River is organizing a traditional Hiroshima-Nagasaki Commemoration at Willingdon Beach at 7 pm with songs, a Peace Lantern Ceremony and a speech by our Mayor who joined Mayors for Peace in 2004 and has been asked to endorse the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. The ICAN campaign will be launched in Powell River at the same time and petitions circulated for signatures until the end of September.

Contact: Dr. Sylvia Keet


2 Responses to Joint Actions for Hiroshima and Nagasaki Commemorations Across Canada

  1. str8shooter says:

    Sure, sure, sure, MORE impathy for the enemy, but I really don’t hear too many of you crying for your own Canadian troops that were killed by the Japanese, or for that matter mistreated, malnourished, beaten and killed in their prisoner of war camps after the fall of Hong Kong! What about the TENS OF MILLIONS of innocent civilians the Japanese killed during their campaigns throughout the entire BCI (Burma, China, India)? Have any of you even heard of the “Rape of Nanking”, or the massacres anywhere else in China, Singapore, or the Philippines?

    What about some of their other atrocities like human experimentation on a scale that would have made Mengele shake in his boots? What about their experiments with biological and chemical weapons on their prisoners?

    Pull your heads out of your butts, learn some REAL history, and get your priorities straight! You can start by reviewing the information listed on this site
    , and when you’re done there, THEN tell me why anyone should weep for Hiroshima, Nagasaki, or any other Japanese city that we destroyed in order to END THE WAR!


  2. Foto Foto Lucu…

    […]Joint Actions for Hiroshima and Nagasaki Commemorations Across Canada « Verbena-19[…]…


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