There’s no other time in the year for reflection and introspection like December 31. All around the world,
people come together to celebrate this day, whether in joy or in contemplation, often full of promise and
For La Finale, Montrealers’ voices will come together, like a single heartbeat, as they share a meal, kick up
their heels or meet up for the countdown to midnight.
On this symbolic day, looking back on some key moments of the past will allow us to cherish the present
before we move forward to a bright new future.
Montréal has an incredible story to tell. Let’s take a moment to reflect on and relive some New Year’s Eves
of the past, pivotal moments that have taken us to December 31, 2017.
December 31, 1642
there were around 50 French colonists living at Fort Ville-Marie. What kinds of conversations
did Jeanne Mance and De Maisonneuve have around the table? The winter looks like it will be harsh
and December’s heavy rains threaten to flood the budding colony. De Maisonneuve prays with all his soul
to ask for divine intervention in order to stop the deluge and he even promises to erect a cross atop Mount
Royal if the settlement is spared.
December 31, 1700
Governor de Callière dreams of a peace treaty with the First Nations. Will he manage
to rally all parties here in Montreal to negotiate this Great peace?
December 31, 1845
The huge influx of Irish who come to escape the Great Famine. Is the promise of a
better future what draws them here? For some, yes; for others, no. Montréal is the capital of a united Canada
and getting ready to enter the industrial era.
December 31, 1945
War is finally over. Life gradually returns to normal, people can dream big! Camillien
Houde returns as mayor and democracy prevails. Women have entered the workplace. The Montréal Canadiens
have had an excellent season… We’ve got our eyes on the Stanley Cup!
December 31, 1966
The Révolution tranquille is in full swing, everything seems possible. Montréal is experiencing
an economic, cultural and building boom—it even has its own subway! The city is getting ready
to welcome the world at Expo 67.
December 31, 2017
When something ends, something invariably begins. As we wrap up Montréal’s 375th
anniversary, the future beckons with promise. Montréal has the wind in its sails. The city is reinvigorated,
charged, alive, joyous, ambitious. It has donned its finest to bid farewell to this historic year and usher in
bright new beginnings.
This was a year for building bridges between all of us. Among them, the Jacques Cartier Bridge has become
symbolic of Montréal’s dynamism; reflecting the pulse of Montrealers together from now on. It will continue
to move to the beat of our moods and illuminate the city.