Family Day/Louis Riel Day/Heritage Day/Islander Day

National and public holidays in Canada Regional Holidays in Canada


A provincial statutory holiday observed on the third Monday in February in most provinces.

Family Day is celebrated on the second Monday in February in British Columbia.

A modern holiday that is growing in popularity across Canada. Its timing is said to have be selected to coincide with the American holiday of Presidents' Day.

The day may have different names in the Provinces in which it is observed:

Province Name 2016 date 2017 Date 2018 Date
Alberta Family Day 15 February 20 February 19 February
British Columbia Family Day 8 February 13 February 12 February
Manitoba Louis Riel Day 15 February 20 February 19 February
New Brunswick Family Day - - 19 February
Nova Scotia Nova Scotia Heritage Day 15 February 20 February 19 February
Ontario Family Day 15 February 20 February 19 February
Prince Edward Island Islander Day 15 February 20 February 19 February
Saskatchewan Family Day 15 February 20 February 19 February

As the holiday is a provincial holiday, federal employees may not have the day off. The post will be operating and banks and restaurants are allowed to open. Some businesses may stay closed as opening on a holiday means they have to pay employees extra to work on a holiday.

Family Day

Observed in the Canadian provinces of Alberta, New Brunswick, Ontario and Saskatchewan. This holiday celebrates the importance of families and family life to people and their communities.

In Ontario, Family Day isn’t recognised as a holiday by the federal government, therefore federal civil servants do not have the day off.

Announced in April 2017, New Brunswick will observe Family day on the third Monday in February from 2018. This brings New Brunswick up to the national average of eight paid public holidays a year.

British Columbia has celebrated Family Day since 2013. Premier Christy Clark proposed the statutory holiday in 2011, and the date of the second Monday in February was chosen through an online poll arranged by the provincial government.

Louis Riel Day

Legislation proclaiming the third Monday in February as Louis Riel Day was passed by Manitoba's Legislative Assembly in 2007, and first celebrated on February 18, 2008. Louis Riel Day is a name that was suggested by Manitoba school students, in honour of Louis Riel, the Métis leader regarded as the Father of Manitoba.

Nova Scotia Heritage Day

Introduced in 2015, each year this holiday will honour a different person or event, chosen by Nova Scotian school children. The first subject is Viola Desmond. Other days will recognize Mi'kmaq heritage (2017), Africville, Joseph Howe, Edward Francis Arab, Nora Bernard, Carrie Best, J. Willie Comeau, Grand-Pré National Historic Site, William Hall, Rita Joe, Maud Lewis, and Mona Louise Parsons.

Islander Day

Introduced in 2009, this holiday was held on the second Monday of February in 2009, it was switched to the third Monday of February since 2010 after complaints from traders that it placed Prince Edward Island out of sync with the other provincial holidays on that date and also with Presidents day in the USA.

Other Provinces

The third Monday in February is a regular working day in British Columbia, Quebec and the territories.

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