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What is the Canadian Tulip Festival?

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Since 1953, Canada's most colourful festival celebrates the tulip, Ottawa's official flower and an international symbol of friendship and peace, through art and culture. Paying tribute to veterans and the Second World War liberation of the Netherlands by Canadian troops, millions of tulips set the stage for a celebration of authentic art, cultural, historic, culinary, garden and family tulip experiences. Every year since the war, the Netherlands has sent thousands of tulips to Ottawa, in appreciation for Canada's sacrifice of more than 7,600 soldiers, sailors and aviators who died fighting in the Netherlands and for providing safe harbour to the Dutch royal family, which lived in exile in Canada during the war. This tulip festival is considered one of the largest events of its kind in the world and typically begins on the second Friday of May and runs until Victoria Day.

There are four major venues for the tulip festival including: Landsdowne Park, Commissioners Park, Garden Promenade and the Byward Market. Over the years, the festival has established a number of local partnerships that reflect the theme of international friendship in a community setting. Beechwood Cemetery -- Canada's National Cemetery -- is among those who showcase over 35,000 tulips each spring. Shown in the photograph are China tulips interspersed with daffodils located within its main garden. According to Mr. Rabin Ramah, a Canadian and international botanical photographer of “one million tulips” for Google, he conducts an annual pilgrimage to Beechwood Cemetery to specifically photograph their tulip gardens as he regards Beechwood's tulips among the most beautiful in the world.

On this day, 21 May 2018, we celebrate Victoria Day, commemorate 73 years since the Liberation of the Netherlands during the Second World War and mark the conclusion of the 66th edition of the Canadian Tulip Festival in Ottawa, Ontario.

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