Sun draws crowds to Hat­ley

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE - Vic­to­ria Vanier Hat­ley

The Hat­ley Canada Day pa­rade route was packed with peo­ple on Sunday, all seem­ing to en­joy the pa­rade which was a long one this year. So many horses showed up that or­ga­niz­ers re­ally had their hands full get­ting them lined up be­hind the Hat­ley United Church be­fore the start.

Float­mak­ers got creative with the pa­rade theme, Canada Then and

Now. A shiny, new green John Deere tow­ing a rusty brown 1929 Far­mall was a good ex­am­ple of that. “My trac­tor usu­ally starts but this morn­ing it wouldn’t!” ex­plained the Far­mall’s owner, Fran­cis Fecteau of Comp­ton. One hay wagon float fea­tur­ing farm­stead items from yes­ter­day and to­day had the per­fect fin­ish­ing touch: two young boys walked be­hind it, one dressed in to­day’s work­suit while the other was dressed in old over­alls. The floats that took home cash prizes were: the De Boer Fam­ily, CAB RH Rediker, Amanda and Joe Hamel Nurs­ery, Hat­ley United Church, Mccully Clan, Hat­ley 4H, Univer­sal­ist United Sunday School, Cole Bradley and the Jean­son Fam­ily, Shaz­am­fest, the Fire­wood Boys and the Stanstead Red­necks.

For­mer ra­dio per­son­al­ity Royal Orr and David Price, the pres­i­dent of the Bor­ough of Len­noxville, shared the em­cee­ing du­ties dur­ing the Open­ing Cer­e­mony at the Gazebo at noon, fol­low­ing the pa­rade. The Mayor of Hat­ley, Jac­ques de Le­se­leuc, was the first elected of­fi­cial to ad­dress the crowd that had gath­ered: “We wel­come all cit­i­zens, vis­i­tors, maybe some from the United States, we have a big wel­come for you. We con­grat­u­late the or­ga­niz­ers for their de­voted ef­fort in mak­ing such a suc­cess­ful event. Happy Birth­day Canada!” “As Cana­di­ans we share and en­joy a level of free­dom and tol­er­ance that is not bet­ter any­where on earth,” said Or­ford MNA Pierre Reid who spoke next.

“Isn’t it a great day? This is awe­some to see,” said NDP Comp­ton-Stanstead MP Jean Rousseau as he looked out over the crowd. “Be sure and vote. Vot­ing is some­thing pre­cious and some peo­ple have paid with their blood so you can vote,” said Mr. Rousseau who was per­haps think­ing of the pos­si­ble up­com­ing pro- vin­cial elec­tion since the next fed­eral elec­tion is a long way away.

The Open­ing Cer­e­mony re­ally got lively next as Mr. Rousseau, who is also a mu­si­cian, got ready to sing “O Canada”. “I’m go­ing to sing it the way I learnt to sing it on

Hockey Night in Canada,” joked Mr. Rousseau. He and Mr. Reid, who were also joined by Hat­ley mayor Jac­ques de Le­se­leuc and Ayer’s Cliff mayor Alex Van Zuiden, then en­thu­si­as­ti­cally sang the first half of the Na­tional An­them in French, fin­ish­ing in English.

The North Coun­try Swingers ‘pulled out all the stops’ for their square-danc­ing demon­stra­tion this year, hir­ing a pop­u­lar square dance caller from the Montreal area, Corey Low­den, to call the dances for them as they twirled around the pave­ment in front of the gazebo. There was no short­age of con­tes­tants for the Chil­dren’s Games that took place on the grass in the mid­dle of the Com­mons. Af­ter all, the first, sec­ond and third placed fin­ish­ers walk off with cash prizes that can add up. Hat­ley chil­dren seem to do quite well in the Chil­dren’s Games which in­clude foot races, three­legged races, sack races, down on all four races, and the tug-of-war. Ru­mour has it that they prac­tice dur­ing the year in prepa­ra­tion for those tra­di­tional com­pe­ti­tions that re­turn ev­ery year!

The fire­works, pro­vided by the mu­nic­i­pal­ity of Hat­ley, ended the cel­e­bra­tions in the evening.

photo Stanstead Jour­nal

The flag-wav­ing at Hat­ley’s Canada Day starts at a young age!

Wav­ing flags dur­ing the Hat­ley Canada Day Pa­rade were (l. to r.) John Maguire, from Toronto, Noah Knapp, from Stanstead, and his grand­fa­ther Barry Dead­man, from Sawyerville.

Th­ese four, MNA Pierre Reid, Ayer’s Cliff mayor Alex Van Zuiden, Hat­ley mayor Jac­ques de Le­se­leuc and NDP MP Jean Rousseau, sounded so good singing “O Canada” they could start their own four­some!

Photo Stanstead Jour­nal

The Sher­brooke Shriners are a peren­nial favourite at the Hat­ley Canada day Pa­rade.

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