Huge crowd helps United Way cam­paign

Standard-Freeholder (Cornwall) - - FRONT PAGE - TODD HAMBLETON

It’s a fundrais­ing cam­paign that goes on all year and never re­ally ends.

But the hol­i­day sea­son is a big part of it, for the United Way/ Cen­traide of SD&G, which re­cently had its sig­na­ture event – the sixth-an­nual Hol­i­day Wine and Gourmet Tast­ings event.

“(It’s this time of year) when we have our sig­na­ture event and ma­jor push,” said Mea­gan Bin­g­ley, the United Way/Cen­traide of SD&G di­rec­tor of op­er­a­tions.

Bin­g­ley said the wine tast­ings night drew a gath­er­ing of 550, the most ever.

“We had record-break­ing at­ten­dance at our wine event, it was the most suc­cess­ful sig­na­ture event to date,” she said. “It was nice to see the room full – we used two rooms (in­clud­ing an over­flow room). . . we’re truly blown away with the con­tin­ued sup­port (of the United Way).”

The event, sponsored by Xplor­net Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Inc., held at NAV Cen­tre, had guests en­joy­ing tast­ings from chef Luc McCabe from the NAV kitchen, wines sponsored by CMG In­no­va­tions, as well as cider and sig­na­ture cock­tails.

Guests were able to bid on silent and live auc­tion items and win prizes that in­cluded di­a­mond ear­rings cour­tesy of Pom­mier Jewellers, and de­signer wal­lets with $1,000 in cash tucked in­side from Welch LLP.

There was a Wine for a Year prize, which in­cluded 52 bot­tles from around the world, and sponsored by Ol­son­fab Metal Fab­ri­ca­tion.

Live en­ter­tain­ment in­cluded David Jans tour­ing the room and daz­zling guests with his magic, soft jazz by Robert Cote and a per­for­mance from the Du­el­ing Pi­anos.

The chairs of the event, Karen and Ray Brunet, were thrilled with all as­pects of the night.

“The room was elec­tric,” Karen brunet said. “over the past five years we’ve had a part of or­ga­niz­ing this night, and I think we hit it out of the park this year. The tast­ings and wine were ex­cel­lent, the room was alive with ex­cite­ment and the re­sponse af­ter the event has been very pos­i­tive.”

said bin­g­ley: “This event is about kick­ing off the hol­i­day sea­son, bring­ing the com­mu­nity to­gether and rais­ing aware­ness for the united way.

“all the money that we fundraise stays lo­cal (in sd&G). . . ev­ery do­na­tion, spon­sor­ship and in­vest­ment that you make is help­ing our com­mu­nity. It’s not about the (dol­lar amount), it’s about the num­ber of lives that we’re chang­ing in sd&G.”

For the sec­ond straight year, at the launch of the 2018-19 united way fundrais­ing com­mu­nity cam­paign back in septem­ber, no dol­lar goal was an­nounced.

bin­g­ley ac­knowl­edged it’s a “tough de­ci­sion to go that route” and not an­nounce a fundrais­ing goal, but that it’s more im­por­tant for the united way and the com­mu­nity to fo­cus “on the 14 agen­cies that we sup­port, (on the) lives that we’re chang­ing. That some­times gets lost (when a dol­lar amount is an­nounced).”

The united way’s in­ter­nal num­bers, bin­g­ley noted, point to a cur­rent cam­paign that is go­ing well.

“we’re def­i­nitely on track (in re­la­tion to where) we were last year,” she said. “For the to­tal cam­paign, if it broke $1 mil­lion, there’d still be more that we need to do, so we’re not fo­cus­ing on the num­ber.” an­other big event is com­ing up for the united way, the cel­e­bra­tion sleigh raf­fle, with the grand prize draw at noon on dec. 14 at cana­dian Tire.

The sleigh con­tin­ues to be on dis­play at bax­trom’s your In­de­pen­dent Gro­cer, but a union­ized worker’s strike at the store has led to some changes.

“we’ve re­lo­cated our vol­un­teers to cana­dian Tire,” bin­g­ley said, not­ing the fi­nal weekly draw of $200 in gift cards will be this Fri­day.

cel­e­bra­tion sleigh raf­fle tick­ets are for sale at ti­tle spon­sor bmo bank of mon­treal, the bax­trom’s cour­tesy desk, the united way of­fice at 55 water st. (suite 240) and this week­end at cana­dian Tire when united way vol­un­teers are present.


Event spon­sors, gath­ered at the sixth-an­nual United Way/Cen­traide of SD&G Hol­i­day Wine and Gourmet Tast­ings event, at NAV Cen­tre last month.

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