OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 15, 2011) - Each year, on February 15, we recall this day in 1965 when the Canadian Maple Leaf flag flew for the first time on Parliament Hill.

Whether sewn onto a backpack or worn by one of our elite athletes, painted on a child's cheek or saluted by a veteran, our Canadian flag is seen by the world as a symbol of freedom and democracy, while here at home, it reflects the pride we feel for our country and for everything that we, as Canadians, stand for and hold dear.

Today, on National Flag of Canada Day, Canadians of all ages and backgrounds have an opportunity to honour those who proudly carried our national flag and represent our great nation on the world stage.

On behalf of Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Government of Canada, I invite all Canadians to highlight this day's unique character and to make the most of it by learning more about the history of our flag and what is represents. By taking the time to celebrate it, we become aware of how privileged we are to live in a country as wonderful as Canada.

Contact Information: Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
and Official Languages
Codie Taylor - Press Secretary