Some people hoping to attend the fireworks as part of this Victoria Day weekend were dismayed to find out organizers set off the pyrotechnic display almost an hour early Sunday evening because of concern over the weather and the risk of thunderstorms.  “Really disappointed in the communication of the time change,” one woman says on Twitter, “One tweet and one insta pic 6hrs ago isn't enough to let thousands of ppl know that you've changed the timing... Please do better next time.”

Jo Riding, the festival's general manager says they did their best to notify folks.  "We made the decision at 4 p.m.," she says, "It was either go early or not have it at all."  Riding says they used multiple platforms to notify people, including Twiter, Instagram and radio sponsors. 

The Tulip Festival was a resounding success, as was the 21-gun salute on Parliament Hill Victoria Monday.  That went off with a bang!  The skies parted as the cannons fired into the air.  It's a long-held tradition for Victoria Day, along with planting flowers.  It may have been loud, but it's exactly what hundreds of folks came to see on Parliament Hill this Victoria Day Monday.Ethan Trench is visiting Ottawa with his family from Barrie, “Just being here to visit was awesome,” he says, “and just adding this before we leave was incredible.”

“It was awesome,” says Paige Runolfson, “the best 21 gun salute for Victoria Day weekend ever.”

This is an important ceremonial duty for the 30th Field Regiment of the Royal Canadian Artillery.

“The 30th Field Regiment, in one form or another has been conducting salutes on Queen Victoria's birthday since it first formed in 1855,” explains Captain Gareth Newfield, “It is a tradition we've maintained for the last 2 centuries.”

New this century, however, are selfies with Queen Victoria but they will have to wait for another birthday because her statue on the Hill is obscured by construction fencing.

“This is my first time in Ottawa,” says Toronto visitor Melanie Matthews, “and it would have been cool to see all the historical stuff and get some pictures but it is what it is, I guess.”

Also obscured for much of the day was the sun though that didn't stop the crowds from enjoying this last day at the Canadian Tulip Festival.

“Compared to this last long winter, this is much better weather,” says Ottawa resident Raj Vyas, “it is warmer and beautiful.”

And some people were even adding a cold glass of lemonade as they strolled among the tulips.

“I am trying to pretend that it's nice and summer,” explains tourist Kelsy Smith, “Hopefully it'll make it come faster.”

The May long weekend is traditionally when people plant their flowers. 

“This is the big weekend,” says Huguette Lacroix with Lacroix Greenhouses out of Vars, “The weather is here today.  We didn't have the right weather yet but at least today is nice.”




Many of the farmers, like Lacroix, have been working at the stalls in the Byward Market for decades and haven't seen a spring this bad in a long time.

Christiane Gravelle, with Gravelle Garden in Navan has been bringing her goods to the market for 47 years.  She says everything is about 4 weeks behind.

“Even the greenhouse doesn't have enough sun,” she says, “so we have to put the furnace on them at night.  It's hard; it's very hard for everybody.”

And so you can understand how anxioius Karim Benahra is to start digging in his garden.

“Are you going to start planting these as soon as you get home?” he is asked? “Yes, right now,” he laughs.