Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Royal Visit Canada, day four

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on day four of their visit to Canada
(photo UBC Twitter)

After the rain, some sunshine. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge more than made up for the partially rained off schedule of day three with an action packed itinerary as they travelled between British Columbia and Yukon. Whistlestop all the way for William and Kate.

The day began in Kelowna, British Columbia where William and Kate headed to the UBC Okanagan where they were due to get a party started. The campus is marking its tenth anniversary and guests of honour at the celebrations were the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Of course there was a plaque which was dealt with pretty early on in the proceedings but then this was a packed out day. From the dais and speeches, not to mention cord pulling and plaque revealing, it was straight to the sports hall where the royal visitors were treated to a game of volleyball.

Kate and William might be keen on sport but they confined themselves to watching, meeting athletes and chatting to the college mascot, Scorch. Plus there was the almost obligatory presentation of sports shirts to do but in a surprise move, these ones were actually for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge who have spent most of the tour so far saying thank you for gifts being handed to them for Prince George and Princess Charlotte. The kids got teddies.

Kate has had several pregnancy rumour stories swirl around her in the past month so the chance to even step through the gate of a winery is always a welcome detraction from the tummy gazing, bump spotting photographs. The royal couple headed to Mission Hill Winery in Okanagan for their second stop of the day and a visit to the food festival, A Taste of British Columbia.

And they made sure they tasted it. William seemed particularly keen to dive into the offerings while Kate kept it genteel with a couple of discreet samplings and lots of talk. There was also a chance to meet young people learning about cooking and healthy eating through the Chefs in the Classroom programme.

Then it was time for a real departure as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge flew out of British Columbia and into Yukon for the next stage of their tour. First stop in their second province was Whitehorse where the sunshine of earlier in the day had been replaced by grey clouds and chilly temperatures and the royal sunglasses had given way to a coat and that really regal sign that things are cold, a tartan shawl.

The couple spent the evening at a showcase of local art and culture at the Kwanlin Dun Centre. The spectacle of performing arts included song and dance and afterwards William told the performers they should be 'very proud' as it was 'one of the best shows I've ever seen'.

Day five will also include engagements in Whitehorse before a move to Carcross. It will be chilly but after the rain of day three, that might just be a welcome change.

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