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Lakeshore celebrates Canada Day in Stoney Point



by Garrett Fodor

The Town of Lakeshore celebrated Canada’s 152nd birthday on Monday with its annual Canada Day festivities.

  This year’s celebration was held in Stoney Point. Each year, the Town of Lakeshore rotates this festivity amongst its communities of Belle River, Stoney Point, Woodslee, and Comber.

  The festivities began with the parade, which was held in the afternoon. The celebration continued with a flag raising ceremony and continued with family-orientated events, including bubble soccer, lawnmower races, an illusionist, and live musical entertainment. The night concluded with a fireworks display, which illuminated the sky and lakefront with bright colours.

  Linda McKinlay, Ward 6 Councillor for Lakeshore, said having the festival in Stoney Point is something she looks forward to. She added the parade has an intimate feeling as it weaves through the community, giving residents an opportunity to sit on their porch or on their lawn to watch the parade go by.

  “This little town puts on the best parade in Lakeshore,” McKinlay said. “Everybody comes out in full force. I cannot get over the amount of people that came out and watched [the parade] in the heat. Everybody just comes out and has a good time. It’s a really colourful community.”

  McKinlay added that each of Lakeshore’s communities adds their own flare to the Canada Day festival they host. This year, she said having it in Stoney Point, they arranged to have live entertainment not only in English, but also in French, with acts coming in from Ottawa and Quebec. This feature was offered given the history and French culture in Stoney Point.

  This year’s edition also featured local resident Steve Ott, who just returned home after winning the Stanley Cup as an Assistant Coach with the St. Louis Blues. He made an appearance in the parade and also had a booth set up on the festival grounds to take photos and give autographs to fans.

  Ott said having an opportunity to be a part of the parade was great, adding the support and recognition he received was overwhelming. He said he remembers sitting in the lawn chairs growing up to watch the parades and collect candy.

  Ott added he has watched the parade, with his now 12-year-old daughter, for many years. His nephews have enjoyed it every year. To be in it now in a chairmen position is truly special, he said.

  “It’s pretty special the support the area has given me,” Ott said. “I’ve always wanted to comeback and bring the Stanley Cup here, to the area that made me a hockey player and gave me this opportunity.”

  “The kids got to do the St. Louis parade with over a million people and now this one is just as special. My son is four-years-old and he was wondering what this was about, and I told him, first, it is about Canada Day, and secondly, it’s about the awareness of the Stanley Cup, and luckily we got to celebrate both.”

  Ott said he hopes to celebrate with the community in the next month, when he has his day with the Stanley Cup. He said that it is something he has dreamed about doing for years and hopes to have the community involved in that celebration.

© 2020 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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