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Twitter hashtag #mybcfd gives public its say on B.C.'s Family Day

"I would tell you," Labour Minister Margaret MacDiarmid says when asked which Monday in February will be B.C.'s newest holiday, "but I would have to kill you."

The province has asked the public to have its say on Family Day. The new holiday will take effect next February, ending B.C.'s stretch between New Year's Day and Easter without a long weekend.

The only question that remains is which day – the second Monday of the month, or the third? Each has its own advantage. The third Monday would mean B.C. is off the same day as five other provinces, plus the United States (President's Day). The second Monday would mean British Columbians have a holiday all their own to enjoy local attractions.

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The public can vote through the government's website (http://blog.gov.bc.ca/bcfamilyday/). The province has also set up a Twitter hashtag at #mybcfd.

Ms. MacDiarmid held a Twitter town hall on the topic this week. Aside from a couple of near typos, she said it ran quite smoothly. As of mid-day Thursday, more than 14,500 ballots had been cast. Voting wraps up May 22.

Mum's the word on which side has the lead. "It started out more in favour of the third Monday," the minister said in an interview. "You can see that something happened a few days ago and we started getting a lot more that were about tourism in the ski industry. So it seems like it has swung."

Whistler Blackcomb chief operating officer Dave Brownlie issued a statement Thursday urging people to vote for the second Monday, saying ski hills would be less crowded.

Of course, as a quick peruse of the #mybcfd hashtag proves, not everyone agrees.

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@rochellevgraham: "#mybcfd my family lives in Alberta, I would love the same long weekend to be together."

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@tkwan23: "i vote for the 3rd monday, so it'll be closer to my bday:) #MyBCFD"

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@RadicalBeer: "I vote for the 3rd Monday. Who needs to be reminded that you're alone 2x in 1 week with Valentine's & Family Day. #mybcfd Oooh, #aloneday?"

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@Rivershore_Rob: "Government should not declare another stat. Small business can't afford it. They should work on reforming MLA's pensions!!"

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@emi_rogers: "Hoping the BC Family Day will create conversation about diverse types of families, not just the traditional nuclear "ideal" #mybcfd"

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