Whenever Canada wants to commemorate, celebrate or simply show its artistic side, it releases a new quarter. An Anniversary of the Confederation, the Millennium, the Olympics, Canada Day… there is a new quarter minted with a special reverse design for a ton of occasions.
The quarter is a cool coin. A lot of people here dislike the penny, some even want to get rid of it because it is expensive to keep in circulation and it makes your pocket heavy. The nickel, which also sometimes receives a special reverse, is pretty small, and so is the dime—they both usually stay in my coin purse until I finally take a few minutes to count them and get rid of them when paying. As for the fifty-cent piece… never seen one, even though it is regularly minted! All these cents are useful to provide the exact change, since in Canada, you almost end up with weird non-rounded amounts because of the HST (the sales tax levied on top of the cost of a lot of products and services). But none is as nice as the quarter.
Besides, quarters are always useful to have: you can make a phone call for two quarters, feed the meters, buy gum… Rummage through your back and search in your pockets, if you find four quarters you suddenly feel a dollar richer.
When I first came to Canada, I used to put aside the commemorative quarters I liked best. My favourite one was the 2004 Remembrance Day quarter, with its red corn poppy. It was the first coloured general circulation coin in the world!
The other day, I found all my commemorative quarters piled up in an empty film box. These are my favourites.