Commemorating D-Day: Unveiling the 80th Anniversary Celebrations with Noteworthy Installations, Exhibitions and Grand Balls

Immerse yourself in history and celebrate the 80th anniversary of D-Day by discovering our unmissable events! From historic installations to captivating exhibitions to memorable balls, come and honor this iconic date together. Prepare yourself for an unforgettable journey through time, between emotion and commemoration.

The British giants at the Ver-sur-Mer Memorial

Imagine yourself strolling through wild grass with the Channel Sea as a backdrop. It’s here, at British Memorial at Ver-sur-Mer, that you will discover the installation “Standing site giants” imagined by Dan Barton. This work, more than a simple exhibition, covers 10,000 m² of wild meadow with 1475 metal silhouettes two meters high. These dark figures pay tribute to the Commonwealth soldiers who died in June 1944. A few hand-embroidered red wool poppies punctuate this route, adding an emotional touch to this atmosphere of contemplation.

In August, these figures weighing a total of 30 tonnes will return to England, spread across three separate locations. Don’t miss this installation which invites reflection on the sacrifice of these heroes, men and women, including two military nurses honored with larger silhouettes.

The Battle of the Hedgerows at the Normandy Victory Museum

The Manche department, often forgotten during major ceremonies, was nevertheless crucial to the success of the Landings, particularly with the capture of the port of Cherbourg on June 26, 1944. The Normandy Victory Museum in Carentan offers you an immersive dive into the Battle of the hedges through 27 hyper-realistic scenes. Mannequins in period outfits and recreated settings will take you back to the 100 days following the D-Day landings.

Activities such as parades and visits aboard vintage military vehicles are also on the program. Allow 1.5 to 3 hours for this enriching visit. Then take the opportunity to explore the surrounding green countryside, or stop at a local cider house near the beaches of Utah Beach.

Parties and balls: time for celebration

After diving into history, it’s time to party! The 80th Anniversary Celebrations Committee has approved numerous festive events. In Caen, two Liberation Balls free will take place on July 9 and 19. Come dance to the rhythm of jazz at Parc Claude Decaens on July 9 and on Avenue Guynemer on July 19. Period outfits are welcome to recreate the atmosphere of the 1940s.

In Hermanville-sur-Mer, a concert by the Prestige Orchestra, a big band of twenty musicians, will be followed by a large popular ball on the beach. The Manche department also offers a great choir for peace on June 7 in Saint-Lô, with 250 singers performing classics such as “Hymne à la joie” and “We are the World”.

Events not to be missed in Normandy

  • The main museums
  • Map of main events

For retro lovers, don’t miss it Isigny-sur-Mer swing festival June 8 and 9. Concerts, acrobatic dance demonstrations and large balls will be on the program, recreating the atmosphere of the 1940s for fans of the Andrews Sisters and a guaranteed retro atmosphere.

Whether you are a history buff or looking for a moment of conviviality, the celebrations of the 80th anniversary of D-Day in Normandy promise memorable experiences. Take advantage of these events to pay tribute to heroes of the past while celebrating peace and freedom.