More than 300 residents and community group members joined Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua and Members of Council to celebrate the City of Vaughan’s seventh annual Peace Tree Day celebration at North Thornhill Community Centre on June 24.
The City of Vaughan has celebrated Peace Tree Day since 2005 and is proud to promote an event that inspires young people and their families to take pride in their heritage and share it with others. As a multicultural City, Vaughan is home to 99 languages and to many different cultural and religious groups.
Inspired by the award-winning film The Peace Tree by Mitra Sen, Peace Tree Day is an annual festival for youth and families of every culture and faith to share and celebrate peace and diversity through the arts. This year, music by the Rock this Way band kicked off the event followed by the official welcome from the Mayor and Members of Council. The ceremony was emceed by Naomi Parness of CTV and included traditional dance performances by the Bharatanatyam Dancers and Lao Association of Ontario, as well performances by Yakudo Traditional Japanese Drummers, the Philippine Heritage Band and singer Errol Lee. Children enjoyed arts and crafts, cooking workshops, story time with Vaughan Public Library, henna and face paintings as well as dance lessons.
In addition, the 2nd annual Peace Tree Ambassador Award was presented to two sisters, Marim and FarqdBarghash.
“The message of the Peace Tree is about sharing and embracing the many different cultures and faiths within our society. This celebration allows families of all backgrounds to unite and experience the vibrant traditions of every culture and faith in order to create greater understanding and respect among all people,” said Ward 4 Councillor Sandra Yeung Racco, Chair of the Peace Tree Day Committee. “I am delighted that Council has proclaimed the entire month of June as Peace Tree Month, and through this effort, we can encourage everyone in our community to celebrate the differences that make us all unique and be grateful to live in a city that welcomes and supports a multicultural community.”