Cole Hughson shares his musical talents for the community’s good

LITTLE CURRENT—Sixteen-year-old Cole Hughson of Little Current is well-known for his many talents. He’s an accomplished painter and creates impressive landscapes, but he’s also a skillful guitarist and singer who lends his talents for a worthy cause.

Cole, who’s a Grade 10 student, wished to learn the guitar and had taken lessons, but it wasn’t until meeting Little Current musician George Williamson during a community Christmas dinner organized by grandmother Norma Hughson that caused the young man to pick up the instrument again in earnest. That meeting with Mr. Williamson set off an intergenerational friendship that continues to this day.

Cole has always been a singer, sharing his voice at talent shows and school events, so when he was invited to perform at the weekly coffee house held at the Little Current United Church hall, before the pandemic, alongside Mr. Williamson, he jumped at the chance.

“When COVID happened, we moved to online coffee nights,” Cole explains, noting that it gave people a little bit of light in those often-lonely times. “And I’ve been doing it ever since.”

Last summer, fans of the Williamson-Hughson duo could catch them live at Soldier Park in downtown Little Current on Friday nights where open guitar cases sought donations for the Manitoulin Food Bank.

“We raised over $2,000 for the Food Bank last summer,” Cole says proudly. “It feels good to help out the community and give to those who need it.”

Cole says he’s got the volunteering bug and doesn’t plan on stopping community service.

“I just do it because it makes you feel good,” the teen adds.

Music lovers can catch Cole and Mr. Williamson at Soldier Park again this summer where they will continue to raise funds for the Food Bank. The pair have been working on new material all winter long, practicing weekly.