34th Town­ship­pers’ Day Shines

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS - Town­ship­pers" As­so­ci­a­tion Sher­brooke, Len­noxville

De­spite the rainy morn­ing and crisp tem­per­a­tures Town­ship­pers’ Day, the big­gest cul­tural and her­itage cel­e­bra­tion for the Eastern Town­ships English-speak­ing com­mu­nity, was a smash­ing suc­cess with lo­cal res­i­dents and vis­i­tors en­joy­ing an ex­cit­ing day of events and en­ter­tain­ment on Satur­day, Septem­ber 14.

The 34th Town­ship­pers’ Day, af­fec­tion­ately dubbed T-Day, which took place at Bishop’s Col­lege School (BCS), an in­de­pen­dent board­ing and day school in the Bor­ough of Len­noxville, brought to­gether vis­i­tors of all ages and lin­guis­tic back­grounds, in mu­tual cel­e­bra­tion of the vi­tal­ity and cre­ativ­ity of the English-speak­ing com­mu­nity of the Eastern Town­ships.

Or­ga­niz­ers quickly re­sponded to the fes­ti­val site’s soggy weather con­di­tions by re­duc­ing the dis­tance be­tween a ma­jor­ity of the tents and events to al­low an es­ti­mated 2,500 vis­i­tors to en­joy ac­tiv­i­ties and flavours that show­case the English­s­peak­ing com­mu­nity.

The day’s Open­ing Cer­e­monies were hosted by CBC Ra­dio One host Su­san Camp­bell and An­drew Chang of CBC News: Mon­treal, paving the way for the pre­sen­ta­tion of the 2013 Out­stand­ing Town­ship­pers (OT) and Young Town­ships Leader (YTLA) awards.

The OT award, a peer-nom­i­nated award which rec­og­nizes com­mu­nity mem­bers who work pas­sion­ately, and col­lab­o­ra­tively to make the Eastern Town­ships a bet­ter place to live, work and raise a fam­ily, was pre­sented to Gar­net and San­dra Mor­ri­son of Bury, Everette Tay­lor for his work in Rich­mond, and Emma Stevens for her work in Knowl­ton. Six­teen year old Melbourne na­tive An­drew Bo­ersen ac­cepted the 2013 YTLA, which draws at­ten­tion to youth dy­namism and in­volve­ment by cel­e­brat­ing young peo­ple from the re­gion who serve as role mod­els to other youth as well as to adults.

With the site of­fi­cially open, vis­i­tors were able to ex­plore the fes­ti­val site, en­com­passed within BCS’s beau­ti­ful quad and me­mo­rial rink, one of the old­est in the coun­try. In the rink vis­i­tors dis­cov­ered over 60 her­itage, com­mu­nity, gov­ern­men­tal and ed­u­ca­tional ser­vices, groups and or­ga­ni­za­tions serv­ing this com­mu­nity – in­clud­ing the Town­ship­pers’ As­so­ci­a­tion’s var­i­ous part­ners.

With well over 110 items up for grabs, the silent auc­tion was an ac­tive site in the rink. Other busy ar­eas in­cluded Town­ships Ex­pres­sions which fea­tured works cre­ated by lo­cal artists and hosted a read­ing with com­i­cal colum­nist Ross Mur­ray author of You’re Not Go­ing to Eat That, Are You? and Don’t Ev­ery­one

Jump at Once, and the launch of two books; Lan­guage Mat­ters edited by En­dre Farkas and Carolyn Marie Souaid and Tor­rent’s Gate: Thomas Wolfe Vis­its Que­bec by Steve Lux­ton.

Through­out the day fes­ti­val­go­ers en­joyed an ar­ray of fas­ci­nat­ing per­for­mances that in­cluded lo­cal dance troupes pre­sent­ing mod­ern coun­try, tra­di­tional Ir­ish step and old-fash­ioned square. Au­di­ences were spellbound and charmed by Ry Guy Magic, en­gaged and fas­ci­nated by the mu­si­cal mas­tery of Amos Joan­nides and left in stiches by renowned com­edy tag team Bowser & Blue.

Or­gan­is­ers were de­lighted by the num­ber of smil­ing vis­i­tors and even more thrilled that the fes­ti­vals com­mit­ment to min­i­mize its en­vi­ron­men­tal foot­print was main­tained with only one bag of garbage to show for the whole day.

Rachel Hunt­ing, Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor of Town­ship­pers’ As­so­ci­a­tion, said; “Even though the grey skies brought pe­ri­ods of rain, T-Day shined through. It was tremen­dous. There was a won­der­ful mix of peo­ple who en­joyed the day and we had quite a lot of pos­i­tive feed­back from vis­i­tors. We can’t wait for the 35th Town­ship­pers’ Day next year.”

Town­ship­pers’ Day is one of the big­gest an­nual events for Town­ship­pers’ As­so­ci­a­tion, a non-par­ti­san, non-profit com­mu­nity or­ga­ni­za­tion serv­ing the Eastern Town­ships English-speak­ing com­mu­nity. Bishop’s Col­lege School was a gra­cious host for the 2013 edi­tion.

This year’s T-Day ac­tiv­i­ties were made pos­si­ble thanks to the gen­eros­ity of a va­ri­ety of sup­port­ing part­ners, in­clud­ing CBC; Cana­dian Her­itage;Ville de Sher­brooke (Bor­ough of Len­noxville); Bishop’s Univer­sity; BRP; Global Ex­cel, McDon­ald’s (Mario Ian­nuzzi); Stansted Jour­nal; Ser­vices Postale De L’estrie; The Sher­brooke Record; Jean Coutu Len­noxville (Ph Lapointe Lussier La­je­unesse); Caisse Des­jardins De L’est De Sher­brooke; Min­istry Of In­ter­na­tional Re­la­tions, La Fran­co­phonie and Ex­ter­nal Trade For The Govern­ment Of Québec. Town­ship­pers’ As­so­ci­a­tion wishes to sin­cerely thank th­ese part­ners, as well as the nu­mer­ous other con­trib­u­tors whose do­na­tions – both fi­nan­cial and in-kind – went a long way to­wards mak­ing such a won­der­ful, com­mu­nity event pos­si­ble.

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