Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Canadians Gather in Churches, Theatres, Halls for Royal Wedding Viewing Parties

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Canadians Gather in Churches, Theatres, Halls for Royal Wedding Viewing Parties

Article excerpt

Breakfast buffet in Victoria for Royal Wedding

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BRENTWOOD BAY, B.C. - Donna Otto hasn't decided on wearing a fascinator or a new hat on Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding day, but she knows where she'll be at 4 a.m. on Saturday when the royal couple say their 'I dos.'

Otto, like most Canadians is thousands of kilometres and many time zones away from the ceremony at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, but she says she'll be up early in Victoria to toast the newlyweds.

Theatres, cathedrals, libraries, hotels and banquet halls across Canada are booked for morning wedding celebration parties, with the hearty souls on the West Coast rising before dawn for the noon-hour ceremony in Great Britain.

"I'm going to enjoy every bit of it," says Otto, a member of the Royal Commonwealth Society's Vancouver Island branch. "Embrace it. My dress is a work in progress. I'm sure I'll have either a fascinator or I'm seriously thinking of getting a brand new hat."

The Royal Commonwealth Society and the Victoria chapter of the Monarchist League of Canada have teamed up to host a royal wedding breakfast buffet bash a the city's 139-year-old Union Club.

Guests are invited to arrive at 3 a.m. They should be dressed in appropriate wedding attire, where they'll watch a live television broadcast of the wedding.

"I call it fun, frivolous and foolish," says Otto. "Why not? Sometimes life is too serious and we just need to ... interject something that's really fun to do. It's an opportunity to focus on something very positive and that part of it is wonderful because there is such negative news in the world all the time."

Wendy Hart says she's excited about the wedding, but staging a viewing party at 6 a.m. in Winnipeg wasn't generating much buzz.

Instead, the Manitoba wings of the Monarchist League, United Empire Loyalists and Royal Commonwealth Society will gather at noon Central time for a champagne luncheon to view the wedding on tape delay at the castle-like University of Winnipeg Club, she says.

"People were not that keen to get up that early in the morning," says Hart. "It's going to be so pleasant to watch it at a reasonable time of day. …

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