Each year, the Transcona BIZ hosts the Festival of Banners. This community initiative invites all schools in Transcona (part of the River East Transcona School Division) to participate. This fantastic project recognizes the artistic talent that exists in the Transcona community and strengthens the partnerships between local schools and the business community.
Each year, we select a different theme for the banners. The student artists use that theme to inspire their creations. Some themes from previous years include:
2020 The Unofficial Bird of Transcona, the Flamingo
2019 There’s No Place Like Home
2018 Park City
2017 Canada Summer Games
2016 I Found it in Transcona – Showcasing Our Hidden Gems
2015 Your Canada, Your Transcona – 50th Anniversary of the Maple Leaf Flag
2014 Transcona Memories – Hi Neighbour Festival 50th Anniversary
2013 Good Neighbours/Strong Communities
2012 Transcona Centennial
2011 Healthy Living/Active Lifestyles
Throughout the years, with the assistance of the division’s Art Consultant at RETSD, requests for banner submissions have been distributed to the schools each February. The students then create their banner designs on paper to scale, and all these are submitted to the Transcona BIZ, where a panel of community “judges” will select the winning entries to be painted as actual banners. Over an intensive 3 days, students, BIZ staff, parents and school staff work to assist the students in painting their banners. Transforming a 4 by 11-inch drawing into a 30 by 90-inch street banner is not an easy task, especially for students in elementary school! The BIZ typically receives over 1000 paper submissions.
In 2020, we had to do things a little bit differently, with students out of school for the year, we sent our contest home as homework! Students were encouraged to create their banners and drop them off or mail them into the BIZ office at 108 Bond St. The winners were chosen by the community on our Facebook page. Our Transcona BIZ Summer Students traced the submissions onto the double-sided banners and put together painting kits of heavy-duty outdoor paint and brushes. Once everything was ready families poured into our office to pick up their banners and supplies and began the painting process at home. A lot of parents noticed how much bigger the banners are when they are down from the light poles. It was great to hear how much fun the families had working on this project together.
Over the years the Festival of Banners program has been acknowledged in many ways. In 2017, it was recognized on a national scale by the Canada Summer Games Committee. Their Eyes of the Nation Launch event took place in Transcona with several of the young banner artists in attendance displaying their banners proudly.
Make sure to check out all the banners hanging throughout Transcona, along Regent Ave West between Day Street and Plessis, along Bond Street between Regent Ave and Pandora, along Pandora Street between Day Street and Plessis, and on Plessis Street from Pandora heading south under the underpass.