Giv­ing back

Jam ses­sion per­form­ers, vol­un­teers hold ben­e­fit for Mead­owview Com­mu­nity Cen­tre win­ter ex­penses

Valley Journal Advertiser - - COMMUNITY - Kirk.starratt@kingscountynews.ca

It costs a lot of money and count­less vol­un­teer hours to keep com­mu­nity halls open, es­pe­cially dur­ing colder weather.

This fact isn’t lost on those who reg­u­larly make use of the Mead­owview De­vel­op­ment As­so­ci­a­tion sec­re­tary Diane Ra­fuse of Lakeville, pres­i­dent Joe Ben­jamin of Mead­owview and vice pres­i­dent Clif­ford John­stone of Lakeville helped out at a ben­e­fit show for the Mead­owview Com­mu­nity Cen­tre on Nov. 5.

Mead­owview Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, in­clud­ing reg­u­lar jam ses­sion per­form­ers. Re­cently, they put on a ben­e­fit show for the hall to raise money for win­ter ex­penses in­clud­ing heat­ing oil and up­grades to the base­ment. There was also a bake sale, an auc­tion and re­fresh­ments avail­able at the Nov. 5 event.

Basil David­son said he and the

other reg­u­lar jam ses­sion per­form­ers wanted to put on the ben­e­fit for the com­mu­nity cen­tre to show their ap­pre­ci­a­tion to the Mead­owview De­vel­op­ment As­so­ci­a­tion. When­ever some­one in the com­mu­nity is sick or in need, the as­so­ci­a­tion al­lows the per­form­ers to use the hall free of charge to hold ben­e­fit shows. As­so­ci­a­tion mem­bers also vol­un­teer to help out in the kitchen.

“We wanted to give back for them giv­ing to us,” David­son said.

This is the sec­ond year reg­u­lar Fri­day night jam ses­sions have been held at the Mead­owview Com­mu­nity Cen­tre. David­son said this gives com­mu­nity mem­bers, es­pe­cially those who are el­derly, some­where to go on Fri­day nights “to get out and for­get their trou­bles for a while.” It costs only $2 to at­tend, he said.

Mead­owview De­vel­op­ment As- so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Joe Ben­jamin said it’s very im­por­tant to the com­mu­nity to keep the hall open and op­er­at­ing.

“If you go by any time dur­ing the week, it’s usu­ally full of cars be­cause we have dif­fer­ent func­tions,” Ben­jamin said. “The cen­tre is re­ally well used, more than it has been in the past.”

There is a Chase the Ace on Fri­day evenings at 6 p.m., lead­ing into the Fri­day night jam ses­sions that run from 7-10:30 p.m. Ladies darts are played on Sun­day evenings from 7-10:30 p.m. Ben­jamin said there are 32 play­ers and the group makes a do­na­tion to the com­mu­nity as­so­ci­a­tion at the end of the year.

There’s bingo on Wed­nes­day evenings, crib­bage on Thurs­day evenings and reg­u­lar week­end rentals for events like baby show­ers, birth­day par­ties and wed­ding re­cep­tions.

Ben­jamin said the hall has been los­ing a lot of heat through cracks in the base­ment walls. He an­tic­i­pates that up­grades to the base­ment - in­clud­ing in­su­la­tion and a ven­ti­la­tion sys­tem - could cost the as­so­ci­a­tion as much as $15,000 or $20,000.

It also costs sev­eral thou­sand dol­lars to keep the hall heated with an oil fur­nace over the win­ter. Ben­jamin an­tic­i­pates that the as­so­ci­a­tion will have to hold other fundrais­ing events to cover the ex­penses. There are also plans to add a deck to the cen­tre once the base­ment is re­paired.

He said there’s a lot of work in­volved when it comes to keep­ing a com­mu­nity hall op­er­at­ing and it’s get­ting harder to re­cruit vol­un­teers. Many of their vol­un­teers are get­ting older but Ben­jamin said they do what they can. Those who are un­able to vol­un­teer at func­tions help out in other ways, such as do­nat­ing baked goods or auc­tion items.

KirK sTarraTT pho­Tos

Mead­owview Com­mu­nity Cen­tre jam ses­sion per­form­ers gave back to the hall in the form of a ben­e­fit show for win­ter ex­penses on Nov. 5.

Mead­owview De­vel­op­ment As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Joe Ben­jamin and as­so­ci­a­tion mem­ber Josie Jus­ta­son of Mead­owview show some of the baked goods for sale at a ben­e­fit for the Mead­owview Com­mu­nity Cen­tre on Nov. 5.

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