It was on June 24th, as we were heading over to Honest Ed’s, that my friend and confidante Pamela suggested to me that perhaps we should organize a Canada Day party for the following week.
When I asked why Pamela had waited to this moment to make the suggestion, I was informed that normally in the past, Mary had been in charge, but due to her daughter Brenda’s failing health, she had left the responsibility for the event in Pamela’s hands.
Now normally, it’s just some cake and drinks that are served to the residents outside in the front, but I thought maybe I could tap some of the C.H.U. tenant budget to get hamburgers or hotdogs, and we could sell them to raise funds for the ongoing library renovations. Pamela organized the budget over the weekend and away we went.
Linda Gilbert, our C.H.U Health Promotional Officer, replied in an email telling me it was last minute (yes, I was aware of this) but was certain something could be arranged. In this case, 40 Hamburgers, some veggie burgers (ewww) and dogs, as well as a lot of condiments, all left over from the Senator Croll’s Neighbours Night Out event from the week before. She also suggested contacting some other agencies like Heritage Canada to garner some additional support, like flags, pins, etc…
A visit from our local Toronto Fire Department, Station 312 is arranged, despite them needing three weeks advance notice normally.
The office of Olivia Chow, M.P. even calls here to ask if Olivia might be able to stop by (she didn’t, but she did send her prospect for the upcoming Toronto City Council elections, Helen Kennedy for Ward 20 Trinity-Spadina (I’m still voting for Adam Vaughan though.)
It was a good day and a major success, thanks to some of the other residents in our building, like Mary and Renee, who contributed some extraordinarily tasty baked good.
Some minor setbacks, like the wind tearing across park, having us rush from one table to the next, tying things down so we wouldn’t lose anything, as well as my getting the BBQ started a little behind schedule.
We made over $70 in donations for the 250 Davenport Community Library Reno’s, and I got to meet people who I had only just passed on the way to and from the elevators.
A bit of history: The largest celebration of the day itself is held in Ottawa, the nations capitol on Parliament Hill annually, with the Governor General et Al. presiding and has been orchestrated by the Canadian Government since 1958. Since the 80’s, the Federal Government has been pushing for the days celebrations beyond the capitol, offering out grants and aid to local celebration, all to help promote the idea of Canada.