Bon anniversaire, Québec!

That's the phrase that'll be heard at the Calgary Stampede and elsewhere across Canada today - Québec City's official 400th anniversary.

Today, July 11, is the official 400th anniversary of the founding of Québec City. Celebrations are taking place across Canada, with more than one version of explorer Samuel de Champlain extending and accepting felicitations.

The Calgary Stampede, for example, is devoting the entire day to celebrating the anniversary, distributing 25,000 anniversary flags, 40,000 hatbands, 30,000 effigies of Carnival and 5,000 ‘Québec 2008′ scarves, plus 4,000 portions of ice cream to honour the Québec Winter Carnival.

As well, a special grandstand performance is showcasing the anniversary with performances from such Québec stars as La Bottine Souriante, Mathieu Provencal, Cirque du Soleil and Cirque Nouvel-Air. There’s even a contest to win a family trip to the 2009 Québec Winter Carnival on WestJet airlines.

Marketers who’ve been particularly exuberant about celebrating Québec City’s big day include: Desjardins, Bell, SAQ/Vins de France, CBC/Radio-Canada, Hydro-Québec, Brasserie Unibroue, IGA and McDonald’s Restaurants, while official partners are Bombardier, Alex Coulombe ltée (Pepsi), Cascades, Le Soleil, Air Canada, Ultramar and Laurier.