Feature Story Thursday June 7, 2012
Don't Rain On My Parade
Yarrow Days makes it's own sunshine for weekend festivities
It was just as much fun being in the parade as it was watching it for these youngsters last Saturday in Yarrow.
t could have been sunny and hot on Saturday for Yarrow Days, and everyone could have got to wear shorts like they did two weeks ago. But raincoats and umbrellas were no problem and that was half the fun for puddle-stompers. When it came right down to it, th weather didn't really matter to the hundreds of people lining Yarrow Central for the parade.
It was also the official opening of Yarrow Community Park's revamped playground and skate park which had $340,000 worth of improvements and Chilliwack MP Mark Strahl and City Councillor Ken Huttema were on hand for the ceremonial ribbon-cutting after the parade.
"I'm just so glad to be here on behalf of the Government of Canada and welcome you to Yarrow Days," said Strahl who also thanked volunteers for their effort. "You know I live in Greendale across the river, but thank you for sharing your community spirit and that's what makes Yarrow so great is that community spirit. We see it here today and the rain isn't going to dampen that."
Huttema offered special kudos to the City's Parks manager, Dave Snider.
"We had a Town Hall Meeting in Yarrow and Dave Snider, our manager of Parks and Recreation, became the star of that meeting as he presented new plans for the renovation of this park," he said.
"He worked very closely with a couple of volunteers that I'd like to mention particularly, Carol Bell and Jillian Geisbrecht, they a wonderful job, recommended a number of changes which City staff implemented and we came to this beautiful finish here.
"It's one thing to spend the money, it's another to make sure that it's being used and every time I come by here, it's incredible to see the amount of people who are busy in here, so kudos to Dave and the volunteers," said Huttema.
Yarrow Days organizer, Carol Bell told the Voice in an e-mail Tuesday that the entire town pitches in to make the festival happen.
"Fraser Valley Duck and Goose donates the duck sausage which we serve BBQ'd on a bun. Fountain Tire brings their state-of-the-art mobile BBQ to do the honours in the park and Wally and Julie ran that BBQ without a break all day long."
"Canadian Reformed Church across the street puts on a free pancake breakfast on the Saturday and the other three churches in town take turns to serve a full breakfast at our Community Centre on the Sunday. This year it was the Mennonite Brethren," said Bell.
The list of everyone who helps, is too long to mention them all but Bell says their assistance is "invaluable".
Yarrow school kids make posters and which are displayed in businesses' windows ahead of the big weekend. Envision Financial Credit Union, pitch in to help with every function the Yarrow Volunteer Society stages.
Bell says the local Girl Guide troupe put on the children's games in the park and that each participant received a small prize donated by local businesses.
"Our fire brigade members have set up the tents since the very first Yarrow Days - that's another big job. The pastors of Yarrow all get together and plan a special program for Church In The Park on Sunday too.
Bell says the City of Chilliwack generously supplies some of the infrastructure needed like the bleachers set up at the stage.
Even the mountains stopped being moved Saturday when Little Rock Quarries suspended gravel trucking operations for the day.
"We received the warmest, friendliest email from Little Rock confirming that they were offering to do just that — a very large donation from a good neighbour."
See more photos below.
© Copyright (c) 2012 The Valley Voice
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