GORE BAY—What an incredible weekend!
The Gore Bay Harbour Days 2016 may go down as the best yet. Great weather helped draw people out to all the activities and events, and participation and attendance at all the events was tremendous.
The weekend of activities got started last Friday with a farmers’ market on the waterfront. The town of Gore Bay celebrated the official dedication ceremony on the marina-breakwall, and the Heart and Stroke Foundation Big Bike Ride was hugely successful.
On Friday evening Gore Bay Theatre presented their production of ‘Old Love’ by Norm Foster. The Gore Bay Western Manitoulin Lions Club hosted a beer gardens at the waterfront, with live music provided by The Uppers (Peter Nelson and Jamie Mohammed).
There was literally something for everyone in the family to enjoy on Saturday. The day started early with a pancake breakfast being served by the Gore Bay Rotary Club in the morning at the Ron McQuarrie Memorial Gazebo.
The Gore Bay-Western Manitoulin Lions Club hosted their annual soap box derby at the corner of Borron Street and Meredith Street. This has to be one of the most fun events to take part in during the weekend-judging by the laughter conversation of participants and those in attendance. There were lots of prizes to be won.
In the soapbox derby races, finishing first overall was Kowan Orford with Lindsay Sheppard, Nick Purvis and Garrett Sheppard all in second place. Ben Dewar placed third overall.
Kids of all ages had the opportunity to have fun and learn about science with the Science North Presents 3! 2! 1! Blast off on an adventure of all things space.
They were able to discover gravity, constellations, planets and much more with seven hands on exhibits; such as look at the sun with a solar telescope, conduct experiments with a vacuum space and testing themselves in a space trivia game, and much, much more.
The Gore Bay Volunteer Fire Department put on the firefighters 5 km around the bay run/walk. After that the fire truck was kept on site and children had the opportunity to climb behind the wheel of the town fire truck and get a cool fire chief hat during the day.
The lineups were very long all day as ‘It’s Not a Party Without Us!’ were on site with Bouncy Castles and carnival food.
The Lions’ famous beef on a bun luncheon also drew long lineups at the Ron McQuarrie memorial Gazebo, while the same can be said of the Gore Bay recreation committee ‘Life is better with Ice Cream’ booth set up during the day.
Kite flying took place with the first 50 participants getting a free kit to fly.
The Lions Club also hosted a beer gardens from noon hour to 8 pm with live music being provided at the tent on the waterfront, by local musicians such as Greg Wilkins.
You could even have your handwriting analyzed by Constance Suite and Evelyn Cardiff at the Gore Bay Harbour Centre on Saturday.
Another very popular event was the swimming pool fishing booth set up by the Gore Bay Fish and Game Club with the help of Mike Meeker of Meeker’s Aquaculture. Kids got to not only fish with miniature fishing rods, the trout they caught they got to keep.
The waterfront parking lot was filled with an array of cars and trucks as the classic car show, sponsored by Jewell’s Collision Centre, was held. One of the close to 20 participants included a 1937 Ford Black Magic owned by Ken Fogg of Gore Bay.
What has become maybe the signature event of every Harbour Days celebration is the annual cardboard boat regatta. Not only the participation is great for this event, the crowds are huge!
In the 12 and under division, the team of Nick Purvis and Lindsay Sheppard took home first prize with their boat Five Years Running. The Steam Machine of Cody Woods and Kowan Orford placed second while the Trevor White and Ben Dewar team in their boat B&T took third place among the six teams.
In the family division, Cody Woods and Kowan Orford took first place prize with the father-son team of Travis and Grayson Orford taking second place from among the eight entries.
The open division provided the grand prize, a CYC Charter to Benjamin Islands. In this division the grand prize winner was the Trevor White and Ben Dewar team. Placing second was the Cody Woods and Kowan Orford, while the team of Lindsay Sheppard and Nick Purvis was third.
There were river tube races held with individual under 12 team races held (with Trent Bell winning) and a team competition.
Kids 12 and under enjoyed the kids’ foam party with foaming suds in an inflatable party pit, and later a teen foam party was put on by It’s Not a Party Without Us.
The Gore Bay Rotary Club reported record numbers on hand to enjoy their fish fry. Upwards of 400 or more hungry patrons enjoyed the scrumtious meal.
To close out a fantastic day, a Harbour Days dance was held at the tent at the waterfront. Live music was provided by the band, Tin Gypsy, based out of Sudbury. There was a large crowd in attendance to enjoy the dance at the event which was sponsored by the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 514 in Gore Bay.
On Sunday, the exhibition ‘Natural Progression,’ of fibre art by Lynda Noe was provided at the Gore Bay Museum as was a photography exhibit ‘Purvis Fishery’ by David Lewis.
An ecumenical church service was held under the tent at the waterfront, while a reading of handwritten letters was provided at the Gore Bay Harbour Centre.