RQB Celebrates Community Roots: Volunteer Appreciation and Book Launch Event Honors Local Legacy

by Lucie Roy, Community Contributor

The Riviere Qui Barre (RQB)Volunteer Appreciation and Book Launch took place at the RQB arena on Saturday, May 4. 

Attendees packed the venue for the event, which included dinner, presentations, the Wheels of Time-Volume 2 book launch, Volunteer Tree inductees and music and dance to the 642 Band.

Lac Ste. Anne-Parkland MLA Shane Getson, Sturgeon County Mayor Alanna Hnatiw, Div. 4 Councillor Neal Comeau, and Div. 5 Councillor Deanna Stang were in attendance.

Juliet Webb and John Nelson, intermediate members of the RQB Rancheros 4-H Club, were the emcees for the evening. They spoke of RQB’s history and how the community has survived the test of time thanks to the dedication of its members and the longest-standing relationships in the community—the one with the land. 

“It was the land that brought the people here and it was the land that had sustained the many Cree who were here before us,” Juliet Webb said. “RQB is on Treaty 6 territory, and the land of our community is the traditional home of Alexander First Nation and close to the former reserve lands of the Michel(Michelle) Band. It was a traditional route for them, as well as for settlers travelling North and a popular meeting place for many to gather and join as a community.”

Webb said all who visit the RQB Ag building will be able to see the land acknowledgement proudly displayed by the stairs in the front lobby.

The Book Launch covered how the idea came about from a few people, one of whom was the school librarian, Ms Stuart. Stuart had spoken to Bob Nelson about preserving some of the historical books in the library, mainly the 1967 Centennial Album. Then, in the fall of 2022, the creation of Wheels of Time Volume 2 began.  

RQB Ag Society President Shawn Flynn announced the names of the honourees added to the leaves of the tree representing the roots of RQB. Recipients are Carol and Bob Nelson, Oscar and Angeline Majeau,

Monique and Andrew Webb and the RQB History Book Committee.

The Roots of RQB is a tribute to and a way to recognize those outstanding individuals and families who have made a significant contribution to the community of RQB through the RQB Agricultural Society.

Members of the RQB History Committee and volunteers who helped make Wheels of Time Volume 2 a reality. Absent from photo Joanne Byfield.  – Lucie Roy Photo

John Nelson and Juliet Webb, emcees for the evening and seated Bob Nelson and Monique Webb with the new Wheels of Time Volume 2, Juliet also designed the cover of the book. – Lucie Roy Photo

RQB Ag Society President Shawn Flynn was showing where the names of the Inductees were located on the Volunteer Tree, The Roots of RQB. – Lucie Roy Photo

The Land Acknowledgement by Monique Webb, with contributions by Colette Arcand and a plaque provided by Steve Schwandt, is now on display by the stairs in the lobby of the RQB Arena. – Lucie Roy Photo

Sturgeon County Mayor Alanna Hnatiw, Div. 5 Councillor Deanna Stang and MLA Lac Ste Anne-Parkland Shane Getson. – Lucie Roy Photo

Eileen Vollmer with copies of the book Wheels of Time Volume 2. – Lucie Roy Photo

Anita Maurier was commenting on her relative, Grandma Ouimet, and a photo of the farmstead was on the overhead slide presentation. – Lucie Roy Photo

The Band 642 getting ready for music and dance. – Lucie Roy Photo

Some of the people listening to the presentations. – Lucie Roy Photo

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