Molly’s Rain­bows con­tin­ues to cel­e­brate the legacy of Molly MacIvor

The News (New Glasgow) - - PICTOU COUNTY - BY SAM MACDON­ALD

The mem­ory of Molly MacIvor lives on ev­ery year — not in som­bre re­mem­brance, but in an at­mos­phere of fun, fel­low­ship and com­mu­nity spirit.

This year, Sept. 16 will mark the 13th an­nual Car­ni­val of Rain­bows — an event co-or­di­nated by the Molly’s Rain­bows So­ci­ety — to com­mem­o­rate Molly MacIvor.

Molly, who lost her life in a mo­tor ve­hi­cle ac­ci­dent in 2004, has an an­nual com­mu­nity cel­e­bra­tion held in her hon­our. What started as sim­ple back­yard ac­tiv­i­ties among fam­ily and friends grew over the past 12 years, to a full-fledged car­ni­val at North Nova Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­tre.

Jodi MacIvor, Molly’s mother, said, “Molly was born on my birth­day, and I just want to cel­e­brate that day by hav­ing kids to­gether to cel­e­brate Molly’s life.”

MacIvor ex­plained she wanted a cel­e­bra­tion of Molly’s life, and “didn’t want to feel sad on one of the hap­pi­est days of my life.”

Hay­ley Fin­ley, MacIvor’s sis­ter, said that since its early days, the event has al­ways func­tioned like a car­ni­val — a time for fam­i­lies to get to­gether and have some light­hearted fun.

“I had been mourn­ing Molly, and it was time to cel­e­brate her life. I was blessed to have her in my life. Molly was a funny, very happy, easy go­ing lit­tle girl (and) I needed to cel­e­brate that,” MacIvor said. “At the first party … we planted flow­ers, painted pump­kins, had a bar­be­cue, sang happy birth­day and ate some cake. We re­mem­bered Molly and were happy.”

“Jodi didn’t want that day to be sad, and she wanted lots of kids hav­ing fun,” said Fin­ley.

Af­ter the suc­cess of the first event, the small car­ni­val grew over the years, to the point where it is now a well-known an­nual com­mu­nity event.

“It’s a fun time, and it’s grown so much just from fam­ily and friends,” said MacIvor. “It’s some­thing a lot of peo­ple look for­ward to, ev­ery year.”

Fin­ley said, “It’s a fundraiser, but it’s also a thing for fam­i­lies to come and be able to have fun with their fam­ily — it’s just a feel-good day.

“When you lose some­one, you will al­ways have a feel­ing of miss­ing them and wish­ing they were still here. It never goes away. But, if you al­low your­self to cel­e­brate and re­mem­ber what you had – not what you are miss­ing – the grief is more bear­able.”

The car­ni­val fea­tures at­trac­tions in­clud­ing a bouncy house and in­flat­able slide; kid­die zone; spin the wheel game; a fish­pond; bas­ket­ball and hockey shot games – and even bingo and board games.

Food of­fer­ings are the best in car­ni­val fare, such as hot­dogs, ham­burg­ers and cot­ton candy.

“A dona­tion at the door is all we ask for,” said Fin­ley. “We want ev­ery­one to come in and have fun. Once you come in, ev­ery­thing is free.”

The money through ad­mis­sions is do­nated to the IWK and the Aberdeen Hospi­tal. Since Molly and her mother Jodi share a birth­day, the car­ni­val is held as close to that date as pos­si­ble.

MacIvor and Fin­ley ex­pressed their grat­i­tude for the enormous com­mu­nity sup­port that the car­ni­val brings out, ev­ery year.

“It’s a lot of work to do, but we get a lot of help from fam­i­lies and the com­mu­nity. Ev­ery­one comes to­gether to help us out, and that makes it ap­peal­ing,” said Fin­ley. “It’s been a good thing for us all, and when the day comes around, and you’re there among hun­dreds of peo­ple who at­tend, you think, wow, that’s awesome, and it makes you want to keep do­ing it.”

“Life is too busy and too short. Take this time at the car­ni­val to for­get about ev­ery­thing else,” MacIvor said. “Cel­e­brate Molly, cel­e­brate your kids, your fam­ily and friends. Cel­e­brate you. Cel­e­brate life.”

Guests are en­cour­aged to do­nate mer­chan­dise and gift cards for bingo. The car­ni­val will run from 1 to 5 p.m. Any­one with ques­tions is en­cour­aged to con­tact MacIvor at 902-759-0877 or Fin­ley at 902-301-5556 – or send an email to mollysrain­bows@hot­mail.com.

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