Luncheon gives seniors afternoon of memories

Mayor Lloyd Bertschi and 99-year-old Thalia Fischbach cut the centennial cake at the Royal Canadian Legion Saturday.

By Stephen Dafoe

Morinville – Local seniors were transported back in time to 1911, the year Morinville was incorporated as a town, Saturday afternoon. Approximately 75 seniors from Aspen House, Heritage Lodge and Chateau Sturgeon as well as from throughout Morinville gathered at the Morinville Legion for a luncheon thrown in their honour.

The area seniors were surrounded with the sights and sounds of 1911, including music, newspapers, catalogue advertisement, illustrations and other artefacts from the era of the community’s incorporation as a town. But one area senior who shares a birthday in common with Morinville got to take one of those artefacts home. Thalia Fischbach, who moved to Morinville from the Bon Accord area six months ago and who celebrates her one hundredth birthday May 30, was presented with a rare 1911 coin and a fresh, crisp $100 bill.

Mrs. Fischbach said she was delighted with the day. “I think they’re doing a very good job,” she said of the organizer’s efforts in putting on the event. “To tell you the truth, a lot of it was unexpected.”

As she had during morinville’s Family day festivities, Mrs. Fischbach was called upon to cut the centennial cake and once again she got a big laugh by sampling a little of the icing before doing so.

But Morinville’s most senior of seniors was not the only one to walk away with something to remember the day by. Eight area seniors who celebrate birthdays this month were presented with a coin set and a $50 bill. Additionally, area businesses supported the event with a number of prizes, enough that each of the 75 attendees got to take something home. Each senior was also given a parchment certificate with their name on it, recognizing their contributions to Alberta’s legacy.
But perhaps the highlight of the day was a dance performance by four Morinville children: Sarah and Leah Kirsop, Kellar Greff and Rylee Reid, a performance that united Morinville past and present with the community’s future.

Event co-organizer Phyllis Duffy said she was pleased with the turnout and with how things went.

“I know a lot of seniors remember things that have happened in the past and talk about their family members that lived here back then,” she said. “I’m just so happy to have done something where all these seniors could get together and share those memories.”

The seniors’ luncheon is one of a number of centennial events planned for this year and one that was made possible in part by a $2,500 grant from a $100,000 grant fund the Town of Morinville has made available to community groups looking to host centennial events.

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