February 15 is National Flag Day of Canada 

It was 12:00 noon on February 15, 1965 when Canada’s maple leaf flag was raised for the first time. Fast forward 31 years to February 15, 1996, when Prime Minister Jean Chrétien declared this day as National Flag Day of Canada (Flag Day).

Flag Day is about celebrating the Canadian flag, yet it is about so much more! On February 15, all Canadians are united in our pride for our flag, our deep sense of privilege in calling Canada our home, – and our hope for the future as a nation.

As Canadians, we can all identify with this flag, reflecting the fabric of our great country, – geographically and historically, – and symbolizing Canadian values such as freedom, justice, peace, tolerance, compassion and respect. Our flag honours all Canadians throughout history, and up to the present day, who have contributed to building our country – as well as future Canadians – who will ensure the legacy of our forefathers and mothers will always be remembered. Our flag is a beautiful symbol of our collective Canadian identity.

Canadian Flag Prior to 1965                                                                            

The flag of the United Kingdom, called the Royal Union Flag, was used as the official flag of Canada until 1965. Between 1868 and 1965, various designs of the Canadian Red Ensign were used, although none of these were ever officially adopted by Parliament. The flag we know and love today is the result of much debate and discussion, – and was officially adopted on December 15, 1964.

When was the last time you saw the Canadian flag and felt a deep sense of personal pride in being Canadian? To mark this special day, take a selfie with the flag and share with your fellow Canadians.


Toothpick Flags to Impossible Foods Reach Two Million Units

It’s mind-boggling to think about the sheer numbers, and we know it may be hard to visualize two million of anything, so this may help:  Our sources tell us it would take over 140 uninterrupted hours (no breaks) to simply count to two million. Any way you look at it, that’s a lot of flags. Or – what we mean is – that’s a lot of toothpicks, and every last one of them is FDA approved for food contact!

Impossible Foods aims to create the world’s most delicious, nutritious, and sustainable meat and dairy foods, derived directly from plants. This socially responsible company has been around since 2011, working tirelessly to fulfill its mission “to drastically reduce humanity’s destructive impact on the global environment by completely replacing the use of animals as a food production technology.”

To take a bite out of the Impossible Burger, now available at locations across Canada and the US, and to learn more about innovation in plant-based foods, visit the Impossible Foods website at https://www.impossiblefoods.com/

Showcase your brand with our eye-catching and functional toothpick flags. See more custom products by visiting our Gallery.



Farewell to Michel Dupuis, Co-creator of the Franco-Ontarian Flag

The Flag Shop has learned that  Michel Dupuis, co-creator of the Franco-Ontarian Flag has passed away.

The Franco-Ontarian flag was created in Sudbury, Ontario in 1975, by Michel Dupuis, a first-year political science student, and Gaetan Gervais, a historian – both from Laurentian University. Dupuis was 19 years of age at the time.

The Franco-Ontarian flag was designed of two halves, one with a white fleur-de-lis on a green background, and the other with a green trillium on a white background. The colours represent the seasons: white for winter and green for summer, while the fleur-de-lis represents the Francophone population, and the trillium represents Ontario. In 2001, the flag was officially recognized as the emblem of the Franco-Ontarian community, by the Franco-Ontarian Emblem Act.

Created as a symbol of the Franco-Ontarian identity, this flag and was the second to be embraced by Fancophones outside of Quebec, following the Acadian flag, which was adopted in 1884.

In 2010, the Ontario government declared September 25 as Franco-Ontarian Day – a day to “officially recognize the contribution of Ontario’s Francophone community to the cultural, historical, social, economic and political life of the province.” This day was chosen because it was on this date in 1975 that the Franco-Ontarian flag was unfurled for the first time.

All of us at The Flag Shop Vancouver Head  Office extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Michel Dupuis.


Image Source:  sudbury.com

2018: The Year of More is Better!

We made it through 2017, and what a year it was for all Canadians! We came together and celebrated the greatest milestone in our nation’s history! We all share the privilege of living in the best country in the world. Canada is known for freedom, democracy, compassion, opportunity, innovation and peace. Since Confederation in 1867, Canada has grown and achieved so much, and so the year-long celebrations gave us plenty of opportunity to consider – and appreciate – what it means to be Canadian.

We have so many memories of supporting Canada 150 celebrations and events throughout the entire year. As if that weren’t enough, our memories of 2017 don’t stop at Canada 150. We worked with co-ops, municipalities, the entertainment industry, community outreach organizations, and, on relief projects, to name just a few.

It was an amazing year because we were able to fulfill our purpose to connect, make a positive difference and bring meaning to the events and projects of our clients and customers. We loved serving our community!

As we look ahead to 2018, we know it will be all about “more is better!” More connecting, more laughter, more change, more wine, more new ideas, more fun, more sleep, more courage, more friendships, and more dreams realized!

Cheers to 2018 – a year to do and be more!


Home for the Holidays – Celebrating Bodhi Day

If you follow our blog, you probably know we’re in the midst of a special series, “Home for the Holidays”, paying tribute to holiday traditions in December. Carrying that theme, our story today is about Bodhi Day.

On Dec. 8 Buddhists celebrated Bodhi Day. This day is significant to Buddhists around the world because it’s the day Siddhartha Gautama, reached a state of enlightenment, when he saw the morning star at dawn, while under the Bodhi Tree. He became the Buddha, known also as the “Awakened One.”

Bodhi Day is recognized through quiet reflection on the same day the Buddha became enlightened 2,500 years ago. Bodhi Day gives Buddhists opportunities to acknowledge values of compassion, wisdom, compassion and kindness, which represent the Buddhist view of the world.

Many Buddhists decorate a ficus tree for Bodhi Day, which is symbolic the Bodhi Tree. Trees are often decorated with the colored lights symbolizing enlightenment, and strung beads. Three ornaments are an important part of the tree decorations, representing the “Three Jewels” of the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha. A statue under the tree signifies the Buddha sitting under the tree of enlightenment.

Check out our blog to learn more about December celebrations, as our series continues to the end of the year.

Happy Holidays!

Friends of the Canadian Club of Vancouver


The Flag Shop proudly sponsors The Canadian Club of Vancouver, which had its beginnings over 110 years ago, in 1906.

The Board of Directors, together with Raymond Greenwood, President, support the work of the club to promote the Canadian identity and foster patriotic sentiment in a diverse and multicultural nation. While advancing  knowledge of Canada’s own history, the club honours talent in the arts, sciences, business and public affairs, through its events and initiatives held throughout the year.

In the 1920s, the club was a leader in a local initiative to erect a cenotaph in Victory Square, honouring Canadian war veterans. Actively pursuing its goals to foster fellowship among people, and encouraging the celebration of the Canadian identity, while creating dialogue around matters of national significance, the Canadian Club of Vancouver continues to be a community leader today. The club hosts meaningful events featuring guest speakers who share knowledge, insights and personal pride in Canadian pursuits. The club is also involved in important citizenship ceremonies for new Canadians, as well as in hosting the BC-Resident Order of Canada event.

Past guest speakers include: Peter Mansbridge, OC, former Chief Correspondent of CBC News; Santa J. Ono, President, UBC; The Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, Chief Justice of Canada, and The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship. Plan to attend the next event in January, as the club welcomes Warren Roy, CEO & Founder, Global Relay.

For a full roster of upcoming events in 2018, or for membership information, please visit https://www.canadianclubvancouver.com/

Local Citizen with a Heart for Puerto Rico Leads Successful Fundraiser

It’s been over two months since Hurricane Maria ravaged the island of Puerto Rico. As the worst natural disaster to hit the region in nearly 100 years, the hurricane destroyed homes, and knocked out all electricity, affecting the 3.4 million people who live there. Still today, only 46.6% of Puerto Rico has electrical power and it could take months to fully restore electricity to the territory.

A loyal customer of The Flag Shop, Jose Rivera decided to do something to help. As a champion of this important cause, Jose led a fundraising event, which took place last month. With a sister and many personal connections in Puerto Rico, he first saw the plight of the people when he visited in January. Of this experience, he said, “This is a poor island country with very few resources, and the US government does not do enough to help.” He adds, “Even before Hurricane Maria, the country had many struggles, which are now magnified in the wake of the hurricane.”

Jose remembers first coming to The Flag Shop 10 years ago when he needed an El Salvador flag, to pay homage to his home county. For the fundraiser, he knew it would be important to honour the people of Puerto Rico by prominently displaying the Puerto Rico flag as a symbol of national strength, unity and pride.

The Flag Shop is so grateful to Jose for the opportunity to support the event by donating the flag rentals and supplying Canada/Puerto Rico friendship pins on a consignment basis. The special evening was attend by 160+ guests, at our neighbour’s, Andina, a craft beer brewery, which is close enough to see from our window. We heard Andina donated the event venue and, as if that were not enough, they also donated $1 for every drink and food item sold.

Additional relief and future security for the people of Puerto Rico is expected to be announced today. US Senator, Bernie Sanders will introduce a $146 billion recovery plan for Puerto Rico which is expected to provide for renewable energy, including wind and solar power, all within this decade. The bill also provides for billions of dollars in additional funding for education, transportation and health care.

Congratulations to Jose and team, and all those in the community who supported this effort, together raising $9158.20 sent through ConPRmetidos, to bring much-needed relief to the people of Puerto Rico.

National Red Mitten Day in Canada – Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Across the country, National Red Mitten Day is celebrated as a collective expression of Canadian Olympic Pride. If you want to be a part of supporting Canadian athletes who have big Olympic dreams, just put on your red mittens today. Any red mittens will do!

The Hudson’s Bay Company founded National Red Mitten Day in anticipation of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games, and since then, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the red mittens has gone directly to supporting our athletes of today, and extending to those of future generations.

Supplying flags and banners for the 2010 Winter Olympics is a major highlight in the more recent years of The Flag Shop’s 40+ year history! We all know what it feels like to cheer on the best of the best Canadian athletes who strive for gold on the world stage, and who represent the pride of all Canadians in achieving athletic excellence!

Through National Red Mitten Day which has raised over $30 million for the Canadian Olympic Foundation since it began our athletes benefit from the best coaching, state-of-the-art equipment, sports medicine, and other resources which give them world-class training opportunities.

Be a part of the tradition of wearing red mittens today. To learn more about Red Mitten Day, and how you can get involved, (or if you need red mittens), please visit:  http://bit.ly/2AkHIUW




World Kindness Day – Monday, November 13, 2017

Happy World Kindness Day!

On Monday, November 13, get involved in a global movement bringing positive change around the world. We can all do random acts of kindness, such as posting positive messages on social media, raking the leaves or clearing the snow of a senior’s front walk, writing a sweet note in your child’s lunch kit, volunteering at a community shelter,  giving up your seat on the bus, or buying coffee for a total stranger. And, don’t forget, kindness extends to animals as well.

Research about human kindness has found a positive connection between happiness and kindness. In simple terms, when you’re kind, you’re happier and the happier you are, the kinder you are.

Paying it Forward
In recognition of World Kindness Day, The Flag Shop President, Susan Braverman, has plans for her team this week. She said, “World Kindness Day is a great reminder to all of us of the power of kindness, and as someone who doesn’t believe in ‘Hallmark Holidays’ I think every day should be Kindness Day.” She adds, “The true beauty of consciously showing kindness to others is that we have no way of knowing the full impact of one simple act of kindness, or how many people we actually reach, by even one small gesture.”

The World Kindness Movement
The mission of the World Kindness Movement (WKM) is to inspire individuals and connect nations to create a kinder world. The WKM encourages and supports individuals, communities, cities and nations to establish independent kindness movements to join the World Kindness Movement to see a kinder world realized in our lifetime.

Be kind, it’s contagious!

Wearing Your Poppy to Honour Our Canadian Heroes

On Remembrance Day, we pay tribute to the more than 2.3 million Canadians who have served throughout history and the more than 118,000 who laid down their lives in the name of peace and freedom.

We wear red poppies as symbols of remembrance because of the poem, “In Flanders Fields,” written by a Canadian doctor, Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae.  This poem was written from viewpoint of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom and peace. It is their command to the living to carry on.

According to the Royal Canadian Legion, the poppy should be worn on the left lapel, which is closer to the heart. Poppies are to be worn from October 31 to November 11, and rather than being discarded on November 12, they should be placed at a cenotaph (a monument or tomb built in honour of people who died at war and are buried elsewhere).

Lest we forget.