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Flags and Symbols

 

All flags are symbols of honour and pride. Flags at City sites are displayed in a respectful way. The City follows accepted guidelines for displaying flags. The City's flag guidelines align with the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada.

View the current year's flag raising and half-mast list​.

Flag raisings

The City will fly flags on a temporary basis to mark special occasions. The flags will be raised on the courtesy flagpole on the Municipal Complex Plaza from sunrise to sunset.

Flags of nations, recognizing Calgary's ethnic and cultural diversity, may be raised on its national day, one time per year.

Flags of charitable or non-profit groups may be raised to celebrate a special event.

Flag raising criteria and application.

Half-masts

The half-masting of flags is a well-known procedure to honour or express a collective sense of remembrance or sorrow.

In accordance with the Flag Policy, The City will lower flags for annual occasions and to mark significant events.

The annual occasions, as set by the Government of Canada are as follows:

​Date ​Occasion
Date: ​April 9 Occasion: ​National Day of Remembrance of the Battle of Vimy Ridge
Date: ​April 28 Occasion: ​Day of Mourning for Persons Killed or Injured in the Workplace (also known as National Day of Mourning)
Date: ​June 23 Occasion: ​ National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Terrorism
Date: ​Second Sunday in September 
Occasion: Firefighter’s National Memorial Day
Date: ​Last Sunday in September Occasion: ​​Police and Peace Officers' National Memorial Day​
Date: ​November 11 Occasion: ​Remembrance Day
Date: ​December 6  Occasion: ​National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women​

The City will also lower flags for the following significant events:

  • The day of the funeral or memorial for a dignitary.
  • The day of the funeral or memorial for a City employee who dies in the line of duty.
  • The day of the funeral or memorial for a Canadian Armed Forces member killed in active service who was born in Alberta, or whose current posting is Alberta.
  • Solemn occasions, in consultation with the Office of the Mayor.

Flag Policy CP2016-07

Calgary's official flag: etiquette and protocol

The Calgary flag symbolizes harmony between Calgary and the hospitality and spirit of her people. Cowboy hats have been worn with pride by Calgarians. The white Stetson is an iconic symbol of the city. The letter "C" represents Calgary, but also signifies the character, change, culture and charm that has become synonymous with the Calgary community. The colours red and white represent the vibrancy of Calgary's growth.

To buy a Calgary flag, please contact a flag vendor in your community. The City does not have flags available for sale.

Displaying the Calgary flag: the most common method is to use a flagpole. The Calgary flag may be displayed on its own. If the flag is displayed with other flags, refer to the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada​ for the order of precedence for displaying flags.

Disposal of flags and folding flags: visit the Government of Canada.

Flags on display in Council Chamber
Flags in front of Calgary Municipal Complex​

The City of Calgary Crest

The City of Calgary’s official crest was chosen through a contest sponsored by the Calgary Herald newspaper and officially adopted by City Council in March 1902.

The upper third of the crest displays a setting sun above a mural crown (a symbol of loyalty).

The top of the shield is another sun, this one setting behind the majestic Rocky Mountains.

The lower two-thirds of the shield bears the cross of St. George (the patron saint of England) and the Canadian maple leaf, which is inset by a bull buffalo (the former master of our region).

The shield is supported on either side by a horse and a steer, representing the city’s roots in agriculture.

Below the shield are the leek of Wales, the shamrock of Ireland, the rose of England and the thistle of Scotland. All reference the ancestry of the majority of early settlers to the region.

The crest includes our motto, Onward, and the dates of Calgary’s incorporation as a town (1884) and as a city (1894).

Under the scroll the Union Jack, signifying our relationship with the British Commonwealth, and the Red Ensign, Canada’s flag until 1965.

A simplified version of the crest is part of The City of Calgary corporate logo.

The Calgary Tartan

Designed by Donna Buie of Cochrane, Alberta, the St. Andrew-Caledonian Society of Calgary​  presented Calgary with its own tartan which was approved by City Council on July 14, 2003.

The colours:

Red – a Calgary colour from the North West Mounted Police.

Blue – for Calgary’s rivers, the Bow and Elbow.

Yellow – for the prairie and wheat fields that are found to the east.

Grey – for the Rocky Mountains to the west.

Black – for the oil and gas industry which has made Calgary prosper.

White – represents Calgary’s pride in, and the symbolism of, the White Hat.

The tartan is an official and registered symbol of Calgary that any person can wear any way they choose, whenever they like and wherever they like.

Calgary’s Flower

Calgary’s floral emblem is the Anemone Pulsatilla Rubra, more commonly known as the Red Pasque Flower. It was selected as the result of a city-wide survey conducted by the Calgary Horticultural Society and was officially adopted by City Council on July 2, 1991.

A fitting symbol for Calgary, the Red Pasque Flower closely resembles the native Prairie Crocus that grows wild throughout the Calgary area. But unlike the Prairie Crocus, the Red Pasque Flower has been hybridized to our region.

The Red Pasque Flower is a perennial that begins to bloom in early spring, typically around mid-April. This colourful plant requires full-sun to part-shade and thrives best in well-drained soil. Its low profile makes it ideal for growing in rock gardens and perennial borders.​

Calgary’s Mayoral Chain of Office

Commissioned by the Calgary Chamber of Commerce, with assistance from Petro-Canada, to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Calgary’s incorporation, it was created by Henry Birks & Sons Ltd. and presented to Mayor Ralph Klein on January 12, 1985.

The Chain is entirely hand engraved on sterling silver. Mounted on a supporting collar of dark blue gros-grain ribbon and made up of ten medallions which support the City crest pendant at the front.

Four paired medallions refer to:

Pipes – a traditional plains design representing the indigenous tribes who first inhabited the area. The pipes also represent the idea of meeting with the Mayor and Council.

Pumper and Derrick – representing the oil and gas which form the foundation of Calgary’s economy.

Wheat Stalks and Brands – representing the grain and ranching which were cornerstones of Calgary’s initial prosperity. The brands are those of the “Big Four” and the Calgary Stampede.

Buffalo Head – representing the prairie and foothills upon which Calgary grew. The Buffalo Head is also the central element in the Coat of Arms of the Mounted Police who founded Fort Calgary in 1875.

The individual medallions are:

The Provincial Coat of Arms - acknowledging the Province of Alberta as grantor of authority to the Mayor and to the Corporation.

The Olympic Rings - signifying Calgary’s status as an Olympic City and host to the 1988 Winter Olympic Games.

The medallions are supported and spaced by connectors representing Canada’s maple leaf and the Alberta wild rose, floral emblem of the province.

The Chain marks the wearer as the first citizen and a person of some importance. It does not function as a legislative “mace” and, in fact, has no legislative status whatsoever.

The Chain should only be worn by the current Mayor for formal, ceremonial occasions (greeting dignitaries, opening or dedicating facilities and swearing-in ceremonies), all formal portraits, individually or in a group, and any formal, non-political occasion.

Our Song

Following a national contest held in 1986, City Council approved an original tune composed and written by Barry Bowman and Tom Loney. Neighbours of the World is the official song of Calgary. 

To listen to a recording of the song, please click below:

Neighbours of the World
Neighbours of the World Instrumental​

The City of Calgary holds copyright to both versions of the song Neighbours of the World.

This, this is the time
Here, here is the place to be
Stay, and set your spirit free
Come now, now, now, now

Let everyone know
Let everyone come to see
Our dreams turn into reality
A place for us to share

For we are neighbours of the world
A shining city we call Calgary
For we are neighbours of the world
A place for you, a place for me 

A new beginning for you
Treasure all the time you spend
Calgary is your journey’s end
Come now, now, now, now

Hey, tell all the world
This, this is our finest year
You’ll find your tomorrow’s here
You’ll find it here today

For we are neighbours of the world
A shining city we call Calgary
For we are neighbours of the world
A place for you, a place for me

Reach out, let’s make a bridge
Take the hands of your brand-new friends
Share the feeling that never ends
We’re neighbours of the world

Yes we are neighbours of the world
A shining city we call Calgary
For we are neighbours of the world
A place for you, a place for me

Contact

For more information about citizen recognitions and protocol at The City, email protocol@calgary.ca or call 403-988-5588. Office hours are Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​




 


 




 


 


 


 


 


 


 



 


 


 








 


 


 




 




 




 


 


 


 


 


 

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