More About National Discovery Day
Where many parts of Canada celebrate Civic Holiday on the first Monday of August, Discovery Day is celebrated in Yukon on the third Monday of August. The origin of Yukon’s Discovery Day dates back to August 17, 1896, when George Washington Carmack discovered gold at Yukon’s Bonanza Creek. His discovery led to a gold rush, with traders and miners flocking to the region to dig for gold. Over the next two years, more than 100,000 prospectors rushed to the Klondike region, constructing the narrow-gage railway in Yukon and establishing Dawson. The race for unseen wealth continued till 1899 when the bubble burst and gold discoveries in other regions drew miners away. After the gold rush, the Yukon Order of Pioneers convinced Yukon’s Territorial Council to celebrate Discovery Day as a public holiday in 1911. The following year, the holiday was celebrated with parades, sports events, speeches, dances, refreshments, and more. Mining is still an important economic activity in Yukon, and Discovery Day is celebrated with zeal. Miners may not have struck gold, but the gold rush led to the establishment of Yukon as an independent territory. Discovery Day in Yukon is not the same as the Discovery Day celebrated in Newfoundland in June.
Date & Time
August 15, 2023
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