WELLINGTON, Ont. — Hundreds of royal-watchers lined the streets of a picturesque, eastern Ontario village Friday to try and get a glimpse of the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall on the second day of their packed Canadian tour.
Patricia Lang, a 79-year-old from Belleville, Ont. decked out in a Canada Day outfit, waited for the couple with her friend Marge Foster.
“We are thrilled to be here,” Lang said. “They’re our heritage.”
Charles and Camilla also weaved their way into Wellington’s local farmer’s market, where Brittany Roblin and her husband were set up with a maple syrup display along with their three-month-old daughter, Adalynn. The baby was sporting a pink tutu.
“It was a really surreal moment,” Roblin said. “A really once in a lifetime opportunity … to come to a small town and see how our farm-to-table is.”
The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall began their day Friday at a soggy CFB Trenton, where they greeted members of the military and honoured soldiers who died in Afghanistan.
Charles observed a search and rescue demonstration while Camilla attended a separate event where she met with the Queen’s Own Rifles; she is Colonel-in-Chief of the regiment.
The couple then took part in a solemn commemoration service and wreath laying at the Afghanistan Repatriation Memorial located near the base.
Between 2001 and 2014, 158 members of the Canadian Armed Forces lost their lives in Afghanistan.
The couple also stopped to meet with local residents who lined a path near the memorial, where many were holding small Canadian flags in their hands.
Mackenzie Stribling came to meet the royals with her three kids.
“I don’t even think I have words for it,” she said in an interview. “It’s something I never thought I would do, especially with my children.”
Patricia Hunt presented Camilla with a bouquet of flowers including daisies, adding she wished her mother was alive to witness the moment.
“I’m very excited to be here,” she said.
Later Friday, Charles and Camilla stopped in at Norman Hardie Winery located in Prince Edward County.
Owner Norman Hardie said it was an unbelievable moment.
“It is an honour,” he said. “I said to my staff in a million years when we bought this, if you told me the royals were going to come, I’d tell you to fly a kite … It is amazing.”
Camilla also stopped to meet Edward Rose, a 92-year-old who has lived in Canada since the late 1950s and said he was a prisoner of war with her father.
“The connection is we were both in prison together … in 1944,” he said in an interview. “I was captured.”
Gov. Gen. David Johnston also announced Friday the Prince of Wales has been appointed to the extraordinary companion category of the Order of Canada in recognition of his support for Canadian charitable activities and for the men and women in the Canadian Armed Forces.
Charles is expected to receive the honour Saturday morning at Rideau Hall.
In Ottawa, the couple are to attend Canada Day celebrations Saturday on Parliament Hill to mark the 150th anniversary of Confederation; Charles is expected to deliver remarks.
They will stop in at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, Que. where they’ll meet with Canadians and cut a ribbon to mark the opening of Canadian History Hall.