More than 700 cadets will march on to Dieppe Square in Vernon Thursday evening to mark the end of six weeks of intense training in leadership, citizenship and fitness at the North Okanagan facility, which has been training cadets since 1949.
Friends, family and visitors are invited to watch the pomp and ceremony of the final parade and sunset ceremony, which begins at 6:15 p.m. with music by the centre’s school of music.
The bugle will sound at 6:38 p.m. and the parade markers will march on to the square, followed by the officers and cadets at 6:50 p.m.
The reviewing officer Brig.-Gen. (retired) Ray Romses, the Colonel Commandant of the Royal Canadian Army Cadets, will arrive at 7:05 p.m. His distinguished military career began as a cadet in 1966 and he spent two summers at Vernon.
Cadets on parade Thursday will have finished either three-week basic courses: Leadership, Drill & Ceremonial, Fitness and Sports, Marksmanship, Musicianship and Expedition and six-week instructor courses: Musicianship, Drill & Ceremonial, Air Rifle Marksmanship and Expedition.
After the inspection, march past and awards, the cadets in the guard will perform a Feu de Joie, a ceremonial firing of blank rounds in rapid sequence.
The parade ends at sunset with the traditional playing of Amazing Grace before the cadets march off the square for the last time this summer and then prepare to return to their homes across western Canada.
The graduation parade for basic courses will take place today at 8:30 a.m.
The graduation parade for instructor courses will take place Thursday at 8:30 a.m. and the graduation parade for the third intake of general training cadets will take place Friday morning at 8 a.m.
During the summer, more than 1,150 sea, army, and air cadets from western Canada will have spent up to seven weeks in the Vernon Cadet Training Centre, expanding the training they receive at their home units, developing new skills and forming new friendships, one of the most popular reasons cadets give for returning to VCTC year after year.