Actor Will Arnett is pictured with his star as he is inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame during an event in Toronto on Saturday, November 23, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Actor Will Arnett is pictured with his star as he is inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame during an event in Toronto on Saturday, November 23, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Alessia Cara, Will Arnett among those honoured at Canada’s Walk of Fame

A telecast of the 2019 Canada’s Walk of Fame Awards airs Dec. 15

Alessia Cara says getting recognition at this year’s Canada’s Walk of Fame gala event ranks among the most tremendous honours she’s received in her career.

“I feel like getting acknowledged by your own country in this way is huge,” the 23-year-old performer said on the red carpet before she received the special 2019 Allan Slaight Music Impact honour on Saturday night.

“It’s one of those things where I’m going to have to see it to actually believe it.”

The Grammy and Juno award-winning pop singer was among a group of Canadians being recognized for excellence in their respective fields, which include science, sports, entertainment and business.

Eight other influential names were inducted into the Walk of Fame at the gala dinner and will be given a star in Toronto’s entertainment district. They include architect Frank Gehry, hockey player Mark Messier, investor Jim Treliving, and speed skater Cindy Klassen.

“When I look at all the inductees, these are Canadians that have made such a difference in the world,” Klassen said.

“It’s incredible to be a part of that, a very humbling experience.”

Fellow inductee Will Arnett, whose work on “Arrested Development” and “Bojack Horseman” has ushered him into the echelons of comedy fame, said he’s honoured the organizers considered him worthy — but he has a few suggestions for future ceremonies to spice up the Canadiana.

First, he’d change their name to “The Sorrys,” and then he’d redesign the evening wear.

“Instead of just a regular tuxedo, if we wore Canadian tuxedos that would be better,” he said, pitching the combo of denim jeans and jackets.

As for the red carpet, he’d like to see a Zamboni crawling across it before the big show.

“They should have an ice carpet,” said the proud Toronto Maple Leafs fan. “Had nobody thought of an ice carpet? I can’t understand why.”

ALSO READ: Shawn Mendes, Drake, Jessie Reyez pick up Grammy nominations

All joking aside, Triumph guitarist Rik Emmett said he was especially pleased when he realized the rock band’s maple leaf-styled star would be near Roy Thomson Hall, a stretch of King Street West where generations of his family worked in the now-demolished Canadian Pacific Express building.

“Not only my dad worked there, but my grandfather worked there, my great-uncles and my great-grandfather,” said Emmett, whose band played hits “Lay It on the Line” and “Magic Power.”

Presenters for the evening included 2002 inductee David Foster, who tipped his music producer hat to friend Treliving, owner of Boston Pizza and one of the stars of ”Dragons’ Den,” and Kurt Browning, who joined the Walk of Fame in 2001.

Browning said getting inducted was like “an introduction to a family” where he’s wound up playing host and presenter to gatherings numerous times since.

“I seem to be the mascot of the Walk of Fame somehow,” he said.

“I think it’s important that we feel connected and that we celebrate when someone from our Canadian family does well.”

Posthumous honours went to children’s entertainer Ernie Coombs, known by many families as TV host Mr. Dressup. His grandchilden accepted on his behalf.

A tribute to James Naismith, who invented the game of basketball, included his grandson Jim and Isiah Thomas, an NBA All-Star and former Toronto Raptors executive.

Thomas, who was instrumental in establishing the Raptors in Canada, said he wanted to pay tribute to the creator of the sport he’s invested much of his life in.

After the Raptors won the NBA championship this year, some wondered if basketball could eclipse hockey as the ultimate Canadian sport, but Thomas said he always saw room for both.

“Hockey will always be the godfather of Canadian sport,” he said. “However, we wanted to give the kids choices.”

A telecast of the 2019 Canada’s Walk of Fame Awards airs Dec. 15 on CTV and will be available to stream through Crave on Dec. 20.

David Friend, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Nurses at the Cowichan District Hospital are thanking the community for following the health protocols during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Pictured from left are nurses Jacqueline Kendall, Melissa Bustard and Heidi Ferris. (Robert Barron/Citizen)
Pandemic year like no other, Cowichan nurses say

May 10-16 is National Nursing Week

Island Health’s new Wellness and Recovery Centre at 5878 York Rd. is now planned to be open in the fall. (File photo)
Wellness and Recovery Centre now to open in the fall

Three community dialogues scheduled for May

B.C. Centre for Disease Control data showing new cases by local health area for the week of May 2-8. (BCCDC image)
Vancouver Island COVID-19 local case counts the lowest they’ve been all year

On some areas of Island, more than 60 per cent of adults have received a vaccine dose

A nurse gets a swab ready to perform a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Island’s daily COVID-19 case count drops below 10 for just the second time in 2021

Province reports 8 new COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island Wednesday

Before you take on a pet, make sure you want to have it for life. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Editorial: A pet is a lifetime commitment

Tons of people are getting pets during the pandemic, some for the first time

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

The bodies of Carlo and Erick Fryer were discovered by a local couple walking on a remote forest road in Naramata on May 10. (Submitted)
Kamloops brothers identified as pair found dead near Penticton

The bodies of Carlo and Erick Fryer were discovered by a local couple walking

Municipal governments around B.C. have emergency authority to conduct meetings online, use mail voting and spend reserve funds on operation expenses. (Penticton Western News)
Online council meetings, mail-in voting option to be extended in B.C.

Proposed law makes municipal COVID-19 exceptions permanent

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A nurse prepares a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press)
British Columbians aged 20+ can book for vaccine Saturday, those 18+ on Sunday

‘We are also actively working to to incorporate the ages 12 to 17 into our immunization program’

The AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine. (AP/Eranga Jayawardena)
2nd person in B.C. diagnosed with rare blood clotting after AstraZeneca vaccine

The man, in his 40s, is currently receiving care at a hospital in the Fraser Health region

Canada’s demo Hornet soars over the Strait of Georgia near Comox. The F-18 demo team is returning to the Valley for their annual spring training. Photo by Sgt. Robert Bottrill/DND
F-18 flight demo team returning to Vancouver Island for spring training

The team will be in the Comox Valley area from May 16 to 24

Saanich police and a coroner investigated a fatal crash in the 5200-block of West Saanich Road on Feb. 4, 2021. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Police determine speed, impairment not factors in fatal Greater Victoria crash

Driver who died veered across centre line into oncoming traffic for unknown reason, police say

Ladysmith RCMP safely escorted the black bear to the woods near Ladysmith Cemetary. (Town of Ladysmith/Facebook photo)
Bow-legged bear returns to Ladysmith, has an appointment with the vet

Brown Drive Park closed as conservation officers search for her after she returned from relocation

Most Read