Much of the world is working itself into a frenzy this week over the upcoming nuptials between Prince William and Kate Middleton on Friday, April 29th at Westminster Abbey. London is expecting at least 2 million visitors for the day (four times as many as any given day) and up to 2 billion television viewers are expected to watch the couple exchange vows (1/4 of the world's population). April 29th has been declared a bank holiday in the UK giving residents a short work week and plenty of opportunity to fill the streets and cheer on the happy couple. If you weren't lucky enough to be one of the 1900 invited guests then you might want to consider the options available for celebrating the event.
If you are going to be in London then you can join the throngs of locals and tourists who will be lining the procession route in hopes of catching a glimpse of the royal couple. According to www.visitlondon.com Kate will leave Buckingham Palace and travel along the Mall to Westminster Abbey by car. After the ceremony, the newlyweds will return to Buckingham Palace in a grand carriage procession. Their final public appearance of the day is expected to be on the balcony of the Palace to kiss for the cameras and the crowds.
There will be live screenings of the Royal Wedding in Hyde Park and Trafalgar Square which will be free and non-ticketed. There will also be street parties and special events to mark the occasion across the capital and throughout the United Kingdom.
On this side of the pond there are plenty of opportunities to participate as well. One of the most extensive celebrations will take place at The Fairmont Empress in Victoria, British Columbia where April has been declared "Royal Month". The hotel has the following events scheduled: (1) Rise & Shine with the Royals - live broadcast of the proceedings in the Tea Lobby, the Empress Room and the Bengal Lounge; (2) A Royal Subjects Picnic and Afternoon Tea on April 29th on the front lawn; (3) A Royal Celebration Tea on April 30th and May 1st in the hotel's historic venue, The Library; and (4) the Royal Empress Room Dinner on April 29th, 30th and May 1st where dinner will be served to a limited number of guests on the Queen's China.
From coast to coast in Canada there will be similar celebrations including a viewing and breakfast party at Le Meridien King Edward in Toronto, a Royal Wedding Breakfast at the Fairmont Chateau Laurier in Ottawa, a viewing event at Government House in Halifax and a royal breakfast, royal afternoon tea and royal-themed cocktails at the Fairmont Palliser in Calgary.
I remember very well getting up in the wee hours of the morning to watch the fairytale wedding of Lady Diana and Prince Charles, however, I won't be getting up at 3am for this one. Instead I will make good use of my PVR and watch the ceremony at a more convenient time - perhaps with a group of friends and a little wine to toast the royal couple and wish them much happiness.
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