West Pub­nico rec­og­nized for com­mu­nity spirit

The Amherst News - - REGION - TRICOUNTY VAN­GUARD

It was a hugely suc­cess­ful fundraiser for the West Pub­nico le­gion that in­spired a com­mu­nity spirit award for the vil­lage. Fit­tingly, it was in the le­gion hall that the award was pre­sented.

Last year’s Chase the Ace in West Pub­nico raised al­most $650,000 for le­gion branch 66. The con­sid­er­able vol­un­teer ef­fort that went into the ini­tia­tive prompted Char­lene LeBlanc – who was in­volved in the fundraiser – to think about nom­i­nat­ing West Pub­nico for the Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor’s Com­mu­nity Spirit Award.

“We had no lack of vol­un­teers and ev­ery­body was hav­ing a great time,” LeBlanc said, re­fer­ring to the West Pub­nico le­gion’s Chase the Ace, which was held over a nine-month pe­riod in 2016. By the time it ended in late Oc­to­ber, the grand prize was over $415,000.

Nearly a year later – on Fri­day, Oct. 13 – Nova Sco­tia Lt.-Gov. Arthur LeBlanc was at the branch 66 le­gion hall to present the award.

Ad­dress­ing those at­tend­ing the noon-hour cer­e­mony, Lt.-Gov. LeBlanc praised lo­cal res­i­dents for ex­em­pli­fy­ing com­mu­nity spirit. He cited the area’s strong sense of vol­un­teerism, its ef­forts to help oth­ers, the pride it has in its Aca­dian her­itage. “Con­grat­u­la­tions to West Pub­nico,” he said. “Cel­e­brate who you are and all that your com­mu­nity rep­re­sents.”

The day’s speak­ers in­cluded Glenn Dig­gdon, one of the Chase the Ace com­mit­tee mem­bers (and a lo­cal mu­nic­i­pal coun­cil­lor), who said the vil­lage’s com­mu­nity spirit is ev­i­dent in the ren­o­va­tions to the le­gion hall, which has a more se­cure fu­ture thanks to last year’s Chase the Ace.

He spoke of “all the peo­ple who pulled up their sleeves and gladly helped out.” He added that Chase the Ace is just one of the great sto­ries one will find in West Pub­nico.

As Char­lene LeBlanc said mo­ments af­ter Fri­day’s cer­e­mony was over, “There’s noth­ing West Pub­nico can’t do, if they put their mind to it ... They work hard, they play hard, it’s a great place to live.”

ERIC BOURQUE photo

On be­half of the cit­i­zens of West Pub­nico, Char­lene LeBlanc ac­cepted the Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor’s Com­mu­nity Spirit Award from Nova Sco­tia Lt.Gov. Arthur LeBlanc dur­ing an Oct. 13 cer­e­mony at the West Pub­nico le­gion.

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