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St. Pats around the Pontiac

Campbell’s Bay Legion hosts St. Patrick’s Day party

Connor Lalande
Campbell’s Bay March 17, 2023
In a celebration of Irish heritage, the Campbell’s Bay Legion sponsored a St. Patrick’s Day gathering at the Campbell’s Bay RA hall this past Friday.
Equal parts social gathering and fundraiser for the Campbell’s Bay Legion, the event drew crowds who came to revel in the festivities.
The event featured an open entertainment format where musicians were invited to bring their instruments and take the stage. With Irish and country music ringing out through the RA hall, some attendees took to the dance floor to strut their stuff while others sat in groups and mingled amongst each other.
An event with a $5 entrance fee, proceeds went towards supporting the Campbell’s Bay Legion. In addition to the entrance fee, attendees could also purchase tickets for both a 50/50 draw and the raffling off of a miniature cabin painstakingly made and kindly donated by Thomas Renouf.
Renouf, who builds meticulously crafted and thoroughly detailed miniatures in his spare time, said that the chance to support the community in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day was all the motivation he needed to get involved in the event.
“There are guys like me who like to do things for the community,” Renouf said. “Every once in a while, if an event comes up, I’ll build and donate a cabin.”
Legion volunteer and event co-organizer, Mona Woodstock, said that it was nice to see such a large turnout in support of the Campbell’s Bay Legion.
“St. Patrick’s Day is a time to celebrate,” said Woodstock enthusiastically.
According to Woodstock, event planning assistance was also provided by the Campbell’s Bay Lions Club.

Killarney’s Bar shares in St. Patrick’s Day fun

Connor Lalande
Shawville March 17, 2023
Not to be left out of the St. Patrick’s Day revelry taking place throughout the Pontiac, Shawville’s very own Killarney’s Bar held its own St. Patrick’s Day party this past Friday. Featuring the three staples of any quality gathering - good music, cold drinks and jovial company - Killarney’s drew in patrons to celebrate the arrival of a holiday commonly associated with boisterous fun.
A free of charge event, Killarney’s “Drink and be Irish” party marks the first time in years the venue has hosted a special event on the holiday. Event host and Killarney’s bartender, Tanya Greer, said that the bar was packed with patrons on last year’s St. Patrick’s day without a themed event being organized. With that being the case, Greer continued, the hope was that by planning and advertising an event beforehand, even larger crowds could be brought in to share in the festivities.
“People have fun,” Greer said, speaking about her own Irish roots. “Even if you’re not Irish, you’re Irish for a day.”

Celebrating Irish heritage in Shawville

Brett Thoms
Shawville March 18, 2023
Shawville 150 hosted an Irish Stew Supper on Saturday at the Ladies Agricultural Hall (Home Craft Building) as a part of Shawville 150 celebrations.
The supper is part of an effort by Shawville 150 organizers to host at least one event each month as part of the sesquicentennial.
“It sold out very quickly,” said Shawville Mayor Bill McCleary. “I believe we sold 112 tickets and 12 or so for takeout. So there are probably 100 people here or very close to it.”
Live music was performed at the supper by Celtic Cowboys and a presentation on Shawville’s Irish heritage was given by Shelly Hodgins Potvin and Nancy Dale Conroy during the meal.
“The first settlers were from Ireland in 1821. It wasn’t Shawville then but Clarendon Centre. It became Shawville in 1873 and I guess 100 per cent of the early settlers were right from Ireland,” McCleary said about the town’s Irish heritage.
McCleary thanked Giant Tiger, the Abbatoire, Boutique Shawville Shooz, Cartrite’s and the Pontiac Ag Society for helping put on the supper.
The next Shawviile 150 event will be an afternoon Easter tea on April 1.

La Jonction restaurant crafts unique St. Pats menu

Connor Lalande
Campbell’s bay March 17, 2023
La Jonction restaurant in Campbell’s Bay got in on the St. Patrick’s day celebrations on Friday by hosting a special Irish-inspired dinner menu and live music event. Renowned throughout the Pontiac for its food, La Jonction crafted a distinct, homestyle menu specifically for St. Patrick’s Day. Available from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., patrons could choose between Guinness onion soup or salad as a starter, Guinness beer battered fish or bangers and mash as an entree and apple pie or festive cake for dessert.
After the dinner portion of the evening concluded, live entertainment performed by the Celtic Cowboys charmed attendees with their melodic guitar and fiddle refrains. While the Celtic Cowboys indulged the crowd with their musical talents, an appetizer menu was made available for hungry attendees
La Jonction employee, Todd Chunick, said that aside from bringing in more business, hosting events on holidays like St. Patrick’s Day was an excellent way to bring people together and showcase the restaurant.
“It’s nice to get our different menus out there,” said Chunick, explaining that the event could exhib the restaurant’s high quality of food. “The kitchen does a great job.”

Traditional Fare Comes to the Little Red Wagon

Brett Thoms
Shawville March 18, 2023
Traditional Fare, a Celtic-themed band based out of the Pembroke-Petawawa, performed to a packed room at the Little Red Wagon Winery last Saturday.
With fiddles, an accordion, a guitar, the Scottish small pipes and an Irish whistle, the band plays traditional Celtic music, though its exact style is a bit more complicated
“Our sets have amalgamated through our different experiences,” said Dan Schryer, Traditional Fare member and Louis Schryer’s brother. “It comes from Ireland, it comes from Scotland, there’s some French Canadian style, there’s American style and there’s some French Style (France).”
Two band members Alastair MacDonald and Karen Steven, hail directly from Scotland and therefore bring some direct Celtic influence to the band’s sound.
“It’s really a shame, it’s a great St. Patty’s night here and they got a few Scots playing in the band,” joked MacDonald. “The music’s transported across the Atlantic back and forth. And across the Irish Sea.”
The band got together just before covid, but only started performing in earnest after things opened up.
MacDonald, who plays the accordion in the band, said the people in the area are very receptive to Celtic music, and since he’s arrived in the Valley and started experiencing the music scene, he’s been impressed with the variety of styles he’s heard at different concerts.
“There’s a strong heritage here,” MacDonald said. “People are very receptive to the subtle differences between the Ottawa Valley Music whether it be the Scottish, the Irish or the Cape Breton traditions.”
Scott Judd also joined in some of the band’s sets, playing guitar and singing vocals.
“It’s lovely to see the Little Red Wagon Winery flourishing here. Great mood, great food, great wine, great hospitality. And they’re doing a great thing to keep live music going as well,” concluded MacDonald.
“I wish I could play on St. Patrick’s Day more than once a year,” said Schryer.

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