MANITOULIN— Labour Day came as late as it can this year, extending the summer holidays for children in school until this past Monday, September 7.
That means that we are already well on our way to the next major holiday celebration, Thanksgiving weekend, October 10 to 12: just a month from now.
And this is a critical month for everyone and every community who is interested in the annual Harvest Glory Days fall-theme community decorating contest.
To refresh everyone’s memory, this is an event organized by The Expositor Office to encourage fall/harvest theme decorating in every Island community and the paper has made this into a friendly inter-community rivalry to help the process along.
These are two categories: large communities (Gore Bay, Mindemoya, Manitowaning, Wikwemikong, Little Current) and small communities (basically this means all other Island communities).
The overall “best decorated” community is awarded a large roadside 5’ x 8’ metal roadside sign as a testament to local community spirit.
These attractive signs are produced by Beacon Images in Tehkummah, as the sign shop partners with The Expositor in this way.
In the large community category, Manitowaning has gone all-out for two successive years and goes into the 2015 event as the defending champion. Their sign indicates they were the winner in 2013 and again in 2014.
In the small community category, Silver Water is the 2014 defending champion, and their sign is proudly on display near the fire hall on Highway 540 at the town’s easterly entrance.
Spring Bay was the 2013 winner and their sign is on Highway 542 adjacent to the Spring Bay Community Hall.
There have, of course, also been honourable mentions: Aundeck Omni Kaning in 2013 and Gore Bay in 2014.
There is a full-page advertisement on the outside back page (12A) of the second section of this paper that gives full details, plus a clip-out registration form.
The idea is for people in their communities to decorate in such a way that the entire place is attractively themed so this would include homes, businesses, institutions (community halls, municipal/board offices, churches, parks, etc.).
It is the overall effect the judges will be looking for again this year.
It’s important to contact The Expositor Office to register the particular address that will be decorated. This is both for judges’ use and so that the paper can produce a map that will be included as a part of the Thanksgiving week paper so that Manitoulin people and visitors as well can go and see for themselves the clever ways people decorate.
The Northeast Town has already been heard from: Museum curator Heidi Ferguson has registered that the town will be participating and that some public places will be theme-decorated.
Thank you Heidi. This means that you are acting as a community champion, just as others have done in Manitowaning, Spring Bay and Silver Water, to name a few obvious places.
It does take local champions to motivate their friends and neighbours to make this work.
At last spring’s Manitoulin Trade Fair, The Expositor Office booth gave away 500 packets of pumpkin seeds and 500 packets of corn seeds to encourage people to grow their own Harvest Glory Days decorations.
To register online, please go to www.manitoulin.ca
Deadline for registrations is before midnight on Sunday, October 4.