Canadian records say the Battle of Vimy Ridge is ‘where Canada was forged as a nation’, and the Dryden community will have the opportunity to honour veterans and loved ones tonight at the Legion.

Dryden’s Royal Canadian Branch #63 is hosting a night in honour of the 107th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, which will include a banquet, awards and a dinner from the Ladies of the Legion.

Legion President Cyril Ryan says everyone is invited to come out and honour members during the pin ceremony, where their 5 to 60 years of service will be honoured.

“This is one of our great days. We do our pin ceremonies. We have a lot of our dignitaries and VIPs at this dinner. The invitation is out to anyone and everyone out there,” says Ryan.

Social time begins at 5:30 p.m. with the banquet starting at 6 p.m. Tickets for tonight’s event are available at the Legion on Queen Street or at Lotto One.  

“We like to think of Canada Day as the birth of our nation, but that’s not entirely correct,” explains Poppy Chairperson for the Dryden Legion, James Ditchfield.

The French Army had lost 150,000 soldiers over two years in several failed attempts to take the ridge near Arras, across from the small French town of Vimy, by March of 1917 when Canada was given orders to capture the area.

Canadian Major General Arthur Currie led his men to capture Hill 145 by April 12, with soldiers from all four Canadian divisions across Canada fighting shoulder to shoulder for the first time in history.

3,600 people died and over 7,000 were wounded through the battle.