The Montreal Canadiens continue to take over Ontario.
Less than a week after the CN Tower did the same, Niagara Falls will be lit up on Sunday evening from 9:30 to 10 pm in the Canadiens’ traditional red, white, and blue colours.
David Adames, CEO at the Niagara Parks Commission and chair of the Niagara Falls Illumination Board said that the display is meant to showcase the landmark to a national and international audience.
“It was a request that came in from some interested fans,” Adames told Daily Hive. “We have a binational illumination board, so we do illuminations that recognise special events or special occasions.”
Despite Niagara Falls being closer to Toronto (as well as Buffalo, Detroit, and Ottawa), Adames said that the response has so far been “really positive.”
“There are so many Leafs fans in southern Ontario,” Adames said. “There’s many, many, hockey fans on both sides of the border.”
“I noticed that strong rivalry,” he added. “But now we’re wearing our — no pun intended — Canadian hat, in terms of the last team of Canada being in the playoffs. It’s more about national pride and a chance to celebrate the team that’s still in the playoffs.”
Adames said he has no hard NHL loyalties himself.
The lighting fixtures themselves were revamped in 2016 as part of a major Niagara Falls revitalization project.
“We’re able to actually respond to special requests in a much more nimble and a much more comprehensive way,” Adames said of the LED lights that power the illumination. “We can do any light in any colour in the spectrum. We’re shooting light 1,600 feet one-way through the mist.”
Adames is hoping that events like Sunday’s illumination will help bring an optimistic look to challenges people have faced during the coronavirus pandemic.
“COVID has had a devastating impact on tourism and hospitality industries,” Adames said. “What we’ve seen with experienced operators like ourselves in the Niagara region, is that we’re very resilient.”
“So we’ve had to be nimble this past year to adjust, whether it was phased reopening in 2020 or phased reopening that we’re doing this year in 2021.”