In 1996 February 15 was declared National Flag of Canada Day and has been observed every year since.

The maple leaf flag replaced the Canadian Red Ensign flag on Febuary 15th 1965

George Stanley, the man who would later go on to design canadas distinctive new flag wrote in a  letter to the Parliamentary Flag committee. in which he advised that a new flag  “must avoid the use of national or racial symbols that are of a divisive nature” and that it would be “clearly inadvisable” to create a flag that carried either a Union Jack or a fleur-de-lis. He submitted with his letter a rough sketch of a red leaf on a white flag.

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The Stanley proposal was  eventually was selected as one of the final three designs for consideration.

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The flag was selected and sent to  graphic artist Jacques Saint-Cyr for a touchup.

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It was officially adopted as the flag of Canada  by the House of Commons on 15 December 1964.

The flag was raised for the first time on February 15th 1964.

http://www.cbc.ca/archives/categories/politics/language-culture/the-great-canadian-flag-debate/first-official-canadian-flag-raised.html

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