The summer of 1979 marked a milestone for VACC as they celebrated the centennial of the Army Cadet Movement, which marked its beginnings in 1862 and gained official status in 1879. The camp opened its doors to 259 Maritime cadets, thus becoming a truly national cadet camp for the first time.
The first ever Freedom of the City parade for the camp was held in downtown Vernon, a remarkable event that unfolded as Mayor Neil Davidson read the proclamation in the forecourt of City Hall on August 4th, in celebration of the Army Cadet's 100th anniversary and the camps's 30th anniversary. The two one-hundred man guards then fixed bayonets and with the rest of the 1500 cadet parade behind them escorted the camp flag party as they marched through downtown Vernon, with Band Company playing. The uniform worn by cadet camp flag bearer Cadet Steve Maradi, was an original Upper Canada College Rifles uniform from the 1930's, generously loaned by the UCC school corps in Toronto for the parade.
The white water course now trained on the Thompson River between Savona and Ashcroft, challenging its demanding fast moving waters. The rock climbing course continued training at Eagle Rock, with the final one day phase at Graduation Rock on the southern boundary of the camp overlooking Kalamalka Lake.
Brigadier T.E. Snow visited the camp. He was the last war time camp commander from 1944-1945, and father to 1980-1981 camp commander D.D. Snow. The camp's 6-foot diameter "push ball" was stolen and recovered safely a few days later. A total of 1808 cadets attended VACC. As well, VACC celebrated its 30th anniversary. Band Coy performed at Noric House at the edge of the camp. Temperatures were hot that summer, forest fires were common through out the interior of BC, a forest fire burned for three days on Vernon Mountain facing the camp just five miles east across the Valley. A relatively new '74 pattern ceremonial jeep replaced the '67 pattern long used for parade inspections. Total population at camp: 2540 including all staff
Sword of Honour winner: Cadet R. Chapin, 2137 Calgary Highlanders RCACC
Commanding officer: Col. J.P. Beer, MBE, CD