Pender Island Fall Fair Report The Fall Fair held on August 27th at the Community Hall was a great success this year, and a complete list of Fall Fair Trophy winners is in this issue. A complete Fall Fair report will be in the November Pender Post. There was excellent support by local businesses through sponsorships, and this made all the difference in making the Fair more economically sustainable. The September Pender Post had a list of businesses and organizations who contributed to the Fair, and we would like to add Talisman Books as a Blue Ribbon Sponsor, Island Legacy Builders as a Red Ribbon Sponsor, and Southridge Farms Country Store and Driftwood Auto and Marine General Store as Yellow Ribbon Sponsors. We would also like to recognize the Canada Summer Student Grant program which made it possible for us to hire a summer student, Natasha Bhola, part-time for administrative duties. The other aspect of this year’s fair which helped make it more economically sustainable was the generosity of fairgoers donating at the gate, and for those who donated time, talents and resources, from the entertainment, to the printing of brochures and posters. Special thanks to Carol Davis for taking on the raffle at the last minute, Patti and Bill Badcock for help with community groups and printing services, Murray Vasilev for washing dishes, Aaron Grimmer and Craig Miller for their help with the BBQ, Paul Petrie who not only won the Jaime Scott Corbett Memorial Cup for top points, along with Ashton Ross-Smith Trophy and Mackinnon Trophy, but he also took time to help set up and came back to help with a couple of extra hours volunteer time to hang signs because we were short-handed. The entertainers were a reflection of our community, and many many thanks go to the Pender Highlanders, Denny Goertz and Pender Young Violins, guitarist Bill Heintz, local favourites Pages From The Oak Tree, and local DJ Marc Lesperance. Thank you to Valentina Atton who was a big hit with her face painting, the Boland Family with their Bouncy Castle and everyone loved the parade (Thank you Nia Williams). A special feature on wool was a great success, thanks to Jodi Schamberger, Martha McMahon, Diana Kempe who spun wool as Pieter DeMooy sheared the sheep, Aaron Campbell, Pender Island Spinners and Weavers. Special thank you to Theresa Carle-Sanders for a wonderful take-down breakfast, and to the Vanilla Leaf Bakery who helped support the BBQ. There are others – Al Blake and Doug Keating who helped Gary Goodman with parking, many people who showed up to help with set up and take down, who greeted fairgoers at the gates, who made sure the raffle winners got their prizes, and more. Mark your calendar for next year – August 26th, 2017. For more information or to keep in the loop: www.pifi.ca
Pender Island Fall Report Farewell and Best Wishes to Natasha The Farmers’ Institute said goodbye to our business co-op student from UVic, Natasha Bhola, in August, as she heads to Sweden for a year at Stockholm University. Natasha was involved in organizing the Farmers’ Market and helping organize the Fall Fair this summer for her co-op program work experience. She enjoyed Pender Island and even spent a day at the Nu-to-You as a volunteer this summer, and she hopes to come back next summer as a volunteer for the Fall Fair! We wish her well in all her future endeavours. Nick Frappell, who has been helping with set up and take down of the market, will be filling in for Natasha for her Farmers’ Market duties while he attends UVic in the fall, and he also helped with fall fair set up, take down and the Kids Zone. We were fortunate to have such enthusiastic young people helping us this summer. District A Farmers’ Institute Meeting with Ministry of Agriculture Deputy Minister and Staff On June 28th five Farmers’ Institute representative from Vancouver Island, Gulf Islands and Powell River met with Ministry staff in Victoria. We discussed several key issues: Meat regulations impacts, wildlife/agriculture conflicts and predation, invasive species and their impact on agriculture, the potential for year-round covered Farmers’ Markets, and the importance of the community agriculture sector and how our sector can be most effectively represented to the Ministry. The Ministry representatives included the Deputy and Assistant Deputy Ministers of Agriculture, the Superintendent of Farmers’ Institutes, and the Operations Manager of the Meat Inspection Program in BC. The meeting was productive and ministry staff were helpful and receptive. Food Safe course – Thank to Paul Hutcheson for teaching a Food Safe course for our local community in July, and to Poet’s Cove for hosting the venue and providing refreshments.
Pender Island Fall Fair Report At the time of this writing the Fall Fair is a week away and we are finally getting a hot stretch of weather. We would like to thank the community volunteers who make the fair happen, in particular those who enter their hand-made items or home grown produce, bring their chickens or lambs, or volunteer, whether it be for the day or for the year. A special thanks goes out to Natasha Bhola , a UVic Co-op student who did a lot of work behind the scenes which took a lot of time and effort; to the Convenors who also put a lot of time in behind the scenes and often don’t even have a chance to see the fair, section organizers like Gary Goodman, who set up the parking field well in advance, Karl Hamson who mowed the field and helped Jodi with the livestock pens, David Howe and the Green Angel wood choppers who like to help out, Dorothy Murdoch, who with the help of Maria Hanson and Josh Jones organized a beef barbecue with vegetarian chili and baked potatoes, all for 500 people, Joyce Steeves who organized the beer garden as a Hall fundraiser, Ina Timmer and Pearl Nowak who came forward to help with Treasurer duties, Brent Marsden who had to be away but made sure to come out and show us how to put up the big circus type tents, mainstays like Heather and John Rumble and their team on registration, Trinette Prior who organizes the trophies, Donna Kilby and Wendy McDonald who man the Information booth selling BBQ tickets and paying out prize monies, and the set up and take down crews that put it together. Entire families volunteered at the fair; Denny Goertz played violin, his son Owen hosted the Berry Pie contest for Brent, and Nia organized the parade. Last but not least, there was Yoko Kikuchi who produced the artwork for the posters and catalogue, Bruce McConchie who was the MC for the event, and Ellen Willingham who was our guest of honour. There is not enough space to mention all the highlights or people involved, and I am sure each one of you has something that you liked best of all. Let us know what you liked about the fair, and soon we will have a meeting to organize next year’s fair. If you are interested in playing a key role, we want to talk to you!! Email email@example.com and we will be in touch.
August 2016 Pender Post The Pender Islands Fall Fair has been an annual event on Pender Island since 1932 (with a break around WWII and re-started a few years later), with origins as an agricultural harvest event where farmers and their families would gather and enter their home and farm products in competitive events which would provide educational and marketing opportunities, prize monies and recognition for their skills and creativity, and provide much needed socializing after the long working days of summer become the shorter, cooler days of fall. The Fair has evolved into an event that still has the competitive exhibits as its core. Vegetables, fruit and flowers are entered in the fair by beginners and old timers, as are their preserved products. Baked goods, wines and beer, eggs and dairy products complete the foods entered in the competition. Outside the Hall, poultry are judged, and livestock and wool are now part of a showcase display that is meant to educate the public and bring together livestock producers. Upstairs in the Hall the creative talents are showcased – needle work, felting, weaving, fine arts, photography and crafts from all skill levels and ages. Young people receive a special place in the fair, from pre-school on up, from Young People’s Agriculture to Arts, Crafts and more. Recycling and the Nu-To-You also have their own special places, to encourage people of all ages to create new items from old. At the same time, the Fair provides ample opportunity to learn about the community we live in, socialize with our neighbours and friends, meet new people and share a meal. We hope that this traditional event will continue into the future. To highlight the theme of “Celebrating Local Food” and in remembrance of Fred Smith of Welcome Bay Farm, “Bounty of the Penders” will be showcased with the Fred Smith Trophy. As we work on our preparations for the fall fair, we want to encourage all the islands’ growers to bring it up a notch and make your preparations to enter “Bounty of the Penders”, a special category of most artistic display of vegetables, fruit, flowers, home baking, preserves and crafts which contains at least one element from at least 5 of the following 9 sections: floral, fruit, vegetables, wine and beer, dairy and poultry, food preservation, baking, needlecraft and fibre art, applied arts and crafts. Fred passed away this year at 89, a long -time resident of Pender. Fred embodied the rural skills and creativity that this award recognizes. It would be really special to see a good representation of entries in this category. The Pender Islands Fall Fair is a member of the BC Association of Agricultural Fairs & Exhibitions (“BC Fairs”). The BC Fairs website www.bcfairs.ca has resources such as judging standards and tips for fairs. Our website www.pifi.ca has our catalogue section by section, or in a complete pdf format, as well as entry forms and judging standards for fair exhibitors. Catalogues were not printed this year, but for those without printers or computers we would be happy to provide you with one (available at Farmers’ Market or contact firstname.lastname@example.org ) Thank you in advance for those volunteering your time and skills at the 2016 Fair. It is greatly appreciated, and without you we would not have a Fair.