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'It's historic': Holiday open house returns to Manitoba Legislature

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A long-standing holiday tradition returned to the Manitoba Legislature Saturday.

Hundreds of people lined up outside the legislative building for the provincial government's 2023 Holiday Open House.

It was the first holiday open house since 2019. The event was suspended during the COVID-19 pandemic and cancelled last year because of construction and security concerns.

The open house offered a chance for the public to visit the historic building and meet Premier Wab Kinew, as well as other elected officials from across all party lines.

"I wanted to see the guy I voted for," said Georges Beaudry, who was dressed to celebrate his Metis heritage. "It's important because it's historic."

Beaudry said he planned to give some historic maps of Manitoba to the premier so he could know the area's history better.

Kinew greeted attendees dressed in a bright red Christmas sweater. His message to the crowd was one of unity.

"To me, this is the most wonderful time of year, because this is the time of year that we celebrate that ancient value that unites all cultures around the world: generosity," Kinew said.

The event was free of charge, and ran from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Holiday musical performances took place in the main foyer of the Legislature.

Attendees were asked to support the Christmas Cheer Board by bringing non-perishable items to donate.

A provincial spokesperson tells CTV News around 2,000 people attended the open house Saturday afternoon.

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