Brightening the day
Face painter Amanda Brown brought balloons to life at her booth during the craft show benefitting artists with disabilities. Brown holds a balloon giraffe and also offered face painting to the lucky visitors of Saturday’s show. Sawyer Helmer photo
Kalynn Sawyer Helmer
LONG SAULT – The 3rd annual Hobbies, Collectibles, Art and Crafts show was held in Long Sault on Sat., March 24. The fundraiser event “for special needs people artistically inclined of all ages living in our surrounding areas,” is part of the Parade of Nations’ annual projects. Marie Morrell is the driving force behind the Parade of Nations organization and manages to organize and execute such events with only handful of volunteers. “It isn’t work for me,” said Morrell. “I do it just to be able to see a smile on someone’s face.” It is with the help of Rhénald Savard, owner of Seaway Slot Car Racing and Parade of Nations’ vice president that Morrell can achieve the successful events. Savard, as Morrell said it, puts on the show and donates a lot to the charity.
The craft show takes roughly a year to plan but that hard work made for a bustling Town Hall on Saturday. Lost Villages Lions Club provided the lunch and six volunteers helped Morrell get things up and running. While the show is her way of helping artists show their work and make some sales, it is also a fundraiser with money raised from the admission and silent auction going towards artistic persons with disabilities – a passion that was sparked after making a promise to her father to help artists with disabilities. Last year the fundraiser brought in $1,500. This year has been another success and funds raised have been confirmed at a total of $1,560.
Morrell also wanted to thank Lucy Hart for her help in getting Parade of Nations a spot selling cards at the Cornwall Bingo hall. “Without her, that would not have happened,” she said. The money that the charity raises there makes a huge difference.
This year, the craft show featured nearly 40 vendors and had miniature model car and train displays for visitors to enjoy. While Morrell said she still finds it difficult to find volunteers, the show went off without a hitch. “This is my family,” she said gesturing at the community members. Her passion and pride was clear in the care taken to organize the day.
Upcoming fundraisers include the Seaway Train Show at the Long Sault Arena on July 21 and 22, followed by the Parade, Art and Multicultural Festival at the Arena on Aug. 18 and 19.