Attendance at Remembrance Day ceremonies in Vernon and Coldstream will be by invitation only in 2020 due to COVID-19 rules.
The Vernon event, which usually draws thousands to Kal Tire Place every Nov. 11, is going back outdoors this year.
“It will be at the Vernon Cenotaph and the public is not invited. It will be invitation-only,” said Sandra Patterson, poppy chairperson of Vernon’s Royal Canadian Legion branch.
The Vernon Legion will live-stream the Remembrance Day Ceremony at the cenotaph on its Facebook page on Nov. 11.
Patterson said poppy sales are also being scaled back.
The Legion will not be using air cadets, sea cadets, Girl Guides, Brownies or Scouts and Cubs to help with the sales due to COVID-19. Poppy stands will be set up at various businesses throughout the North Okanagan which you can purchase and make donations into a tin. In Vernon, HSBC and London Drugs will also accept tap donations with that money staying in Vernon.
Coldstream is also closing its Remembrance Day ceremony to the public.
“Due to this unprecedented situation that is impacting us all, and to comply with the provincial health orders for the health and safety of our community members and employees, the Remembrance Day ceremony at the Coldstream Cenotaph will be closed to the public for 2020,” chief administrative officer Trevor Seibel said in a release.
The district asks that those groups wishing to have a wreath placed at the Cenotaph contact the municipal office and bring in a wreath by Nov. 6. The wreaths will be placed on the morning of Nov. 11 by District staff, and a list of those that have dropped off wreaths will be posted at districtofcoldstream.ca.
The district is asking people to stay home for everybody’s safety but urge Coldstream residents to take a moment at 11 a.m. on Nov. 11 to remember those who fought for our country. The usual post-ceremony gathering at the Coldstream Fire Hall is also cancelled this year due to health and safety reasons.