Fair time

Stanstead Journal - - STANSTEAD JOURNAL - Ma­gog

Days pass and the rhythm of the sea­sons is now show­ing. Trac­tors in the fields bail­ing hay, the now round bale dot­ting the fields. And soon the sounds of the fair.

The run­ning joke at the Stanstead Jour­nal is that founder LeRoy Robin­son, hav­ing wit­nessed the suc­cess of the first Ayer’s Cliff Fair a cou­ple of weeks be­fore the launch of the pa­per in 1845, de­cided that pub­lish­ing a pa­per here would be a suc­cess. Af­ter all, year af­ter year, he would pub­lish the pro­gram and get rich as a re­sult.

Well, this pa­per and the fair have sur­vived and both are on­go­ing busi­nesses, with more highs and lows than a mod­ern roller coaster, but al­ways an in­ter­est­ing ride. Both have wit­nessed other fairs and pa­pers com­ing and go­ing; both still mod­ern and stuck in time.

But back to what the sea­son means. It’s har­vest time, so you have to sell what you have har­vested and get the best price pos­si­ble for your ef­fort. Now, if you have been judged as the best grower, breeder, in your re­gion, you will get a bet­ter price. Sim­ple ba­sic eco­nomic prin­ci­ple. Good for you if you are the grand prize win­ner and, if you are at the bot­tom, you now know what buy­ers are look­ing for and you may have got­ten a cou­ple of tips along the way.

We must re­al­ize that go­ing to the fair was quite an af­fair in the old days. It was not a fif­teen minute ride but a real fam­ily out­ing in your Sun­day’s best. It was also a time for dat­ing with­out hav­ing a chap­er­one watch­ing your ev­ery step. Boys show­ing what they could do and girls show­ing what they had. Girls were look­ing for boys that were win­ners and good look­ing. Par­ents were dis­cussing the off­spring choices, lead­ing to pro­pos­als at Christ­mas and wed­dings the next sum­mer. Tame by to­day’s stan­dards; quite risqué then.

The lo­cal im­ple­ment man­u­fac­turer would also be there. They would be lo­cal be­cause long dis­tance ship­ping had not been in­vented yet. Rail­roads were in their in­fancy and it would take al­most a cen­tury to have driv­able roads year long. There is a rea­son why Joseph Ar­mand Bom­bardier in­vented the snow-mo­bile: roads were im­prac­ti­ca­ble dur­ing the win­ter. So ev­ery­thing was lo­cally made if pos­si­ble, any­thing made out­side the im­me­di­ate re­gion be­ing pro­hib­i­tive to im­port. So the fair was the best oc­ca­sion to show your wares to your only real prospec­tive cus­tomers. All of our ma­jor vil­lages were lo­cated near wa­ter for a good rea­son: this was the cheap­est way to trans­port goods. Rock Is­land is named be­cause a canal was dug here to cross the wa­ter­fall.

Glob­al­iza­tion is not some­thing new as you can see. Rock Is­land’s canal is un­seen, not a sin­gle lo­cal politi­cian able to see its tourism po­ten­tial, most dream­ing of the glory of the But­ter­field’s com­ing back.

Yet it is at these fairs that to­mor­row’s busi­nesses are seen, some­one show­ing what seems like a far-fetched idea, yet some will see po­ten­tial in it. Maybe a Bom­bardier try­ing to ex­plain why their con­trap­tion will work and help close the sea­sons di­vide.

So fair sea­son is not only fun, it’s a les­son in his­tory. Seen here at the an­nounce­ment of the re­cy­cled art con­test fi­nal­ists were (l. to r.): co­me­dian Res­sourcerie Direc­tor Res­sourcerie Board pres­i­dent po­lit­i­cal at­tachée to Min­is­ter Bibeau, and Res­sourcerie Direc­tor

On Mon­day, the Res­sourcerie des Fron­tieres an­nounced the win­ners in its Con­cours D’Artistes Re­cu­per­a­teurs. More than ninety Que­be­cers from across the prov­ince reg­is­tered for the con­test to cre­ate a work of art out of re­cy­cled ma­te­ri­als. A jury se­lected these six­teen fi­nal­ists from the 53 works that were sub­mit­ted: cat­e­gory pub­lic, Louise Roy, Marie-Eve Gagnon, Monique Trudeau, Philippe De­sormeaux and Serge Mo­rache; cat­e­gory pro­fes­sional, Ca­role Me­lan­con, David Bernier, Ida Ri­vard, Koni Mar­coux and Nor­man Brooke; cat­e­gory young artist, Lau­rence Dubé and Oceane Lachance; cat­e­gory group work, Cen­tre Com­mu­nau­taire Hat­ley, La Frontal­iere, Emily and Heidi Buzzell and Li­ette Cou­ture and Linda Madaraz.

The works will be on ex­hibit from Au­gust 26th to Oc­to­ber 25th at the fol­low­ing sites: In­ter­pre­ta­tion Cen­tre Riviere des Cerises, The Res­sourcerie des Fron­tieres in Coat­i­cook, The Res­sourcerie des Fron­tieres store in Ma­gog, and in Place JR Le­feb­vre in Coat­i­cook. Peo­ple are wel­come to go and see the art and vote on their favourites to get the chance to win a $100 prize. The artists in the dif­fer­ent cat­e­gories who re­ceive the most votes will get a prize of $750.

The win­ners will be an­nounced at a spe­cial din­ner held at the Frontal­iere high school, in Coat­i­cook, on Oc­to­ber 29th, which will fea­ture a show by co­me­dian Daniel Gre­nier. Min­is­ter and Comp­ton-Stanstead MP Marie-Claude Bibeau will be the honorary pres­i­dent of the evening. Prof­its from the evening will go to­wards the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s mis­sion of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, ed­u­ca­tion and and sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment. If your busi­ness would like to sup­port this event, con­tact the Res­sourcerie des Fron­tieres.

Karine Cantin; Jacqueline Bel­leau; Julie Gre­nier; Jean Des Rosiers. Daniel Gre­nier;

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