Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Let's Celebrate and Give Thanks!

Canada Day is an opportunity to gather in our community and to proudly celebrate all it means to be Canadian. It is an opportunity to celebrate Canada’s heritage – which is continuously passed down to us through the works of our authors, poets, artists and performers.

Canada Day is a time to rejoice in the discoveries of our scientific researchers – from the First Airplane Flight in Canada by the Silver Dart in 1909—to the success of our entrepreneurs – like Pelham-based Accipiter Radar Technologies installing the first software-definable radars in an airport this month.

And, of course, it is a time to be thankful for our country and our Town.

We live in a beautiful Town, a bountiful Region, and a wonderful country. As you travel on our rural roads, you will see cherries on the trees and berries on the vines. Our Thursday evening farmer’s market is alive with fresh produce, flowers and plants, and healthy foods and delicious treats. Or, if you stop at one of the roadside stands, you will find similar delights.

We also live in a peaceful, safe community with good schools, and many recreation opportunities. We have clean water, wonderful libraries, and a good mix of neighbourhood and community parks.

You and I are protected by a dedicated police service, devoted volunteer firefighters, and expert emergency personnel. We have fair access to good and affordable healthcare.

True, we do have some work in these areas, but on a global scale, we are doing very well and should be thankful.

We enjoy freedoms of conscience and religion, of thought, belief, opinion and expression, of assembly, and of association. We are free from persecution and from tyranny.

As I have marvelled many times, the work and dedication of so many generous volunteers form the foundation of our vibrant community. From the Santa Clause Parade, to the Fenwick Lions Carnival, to the Fonthill Bandshell Concert Series, to the Canada Day Parade, volunteers organize and run our Town’s significant public events. From Communities in Bloom, to the Horticultural Society, to those that have “adopted a road”, volunteers work to beautify our Town. In every sport from baseball and hockey, to soccer and tennis, volunteers – like the coaches, convenors, and score keepers – ensure that our children enjoy the fun-of-the-game.

As you and your family and friends commemorate our country’s 142nd birthday, I hope you will join me in celebrating and in giving thanks for our community and our Canada.