Home Assignment Hamiltonians celebrate Hamilton Day along the Sonic Runway

Hamiltonians celebrate Hamilton Day along the Sonic Runway

Sonic Runway sign at entrance of event.
Sonic Runway will be open from 5-10 p.m. until the end of November.

The Hamilton Chamber of Commerce kicked off Hamilton Day celebrations on Friday (Nov.8) with Sonic Runway at Pier 8. Visitors could walk through the 432-foot-long temporary art installation, which uses 25 LED-lined arches to translate sounds into light patterns.    

According to Katie Stiel, manager of strategic initiatives at the Chamber of Commerce, Hamilton Day was first celebrated in 1931 to boost morale during the Great Depression.     

“Cut to 90 years later, we’re in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic and very similar economic challenges, and low morale as well,” Stiel said. “So, we thought to take this amazing idea from the past, reinvent it for a more modern context, and see what happens.”    

Event staff photographing Pepe, the smiling Hamilton Day mascot.
Katy Stiel (r) took photos Pepe, the Hamilton Day mascot, with visitors.

Hamilton Day has been celebrated for the past three years and has expanded to a four-day celebration, including events like the Sonic Runway. Visitors to the Runway could decorate themselves with free glow sticks from staff before taking a selfie with Pepe, the smiling Hamilton Day mascot. 

“I love supporting local,” visitor Lohifa Pogoson Acker said. “I love the idea of Hamilton Day and what it means to the community: bringing us together, introducing us to new businesses, and encouraging us to support and build up the community.”    

Visitor looking at an another art installation at the Sonic Runway labelled the Butterfly Effect.
Visitors watched as the art installation, The Butterfly Effect, lit up.

After walking through the colourful, sensory-immersive tunnel, people could watch a fire spinner light up the night on the other side. Sonic Runway will be open every evening until the end of the month; for special programming, visit hamilton.ca/things-do.