Garden party deemed a successBy Gisele McKnight
Prayers for a sunny day were answered for the annual garden party at Farraline Place on Aug. 13. More than 120 people attended the summer celebration on Queen Street in Fredericton.
The party is a much-anticipated event for residents, said administrator Judy O’Donnell.
"It's a way for residents to say thank you to their family and friends, and for us to say thank you as well," she said. "They really look forward to it, as you can tell."
On Thursday, the yard was decorated in the style of the 1950s and 60s, and filled with chairs and tables. A photo booth allowed people to pose with old-time props, and volunteers and staff were busy making root beer floats for guests. Volunteer Ron Henry, whose mother once lived at Farraline Place, manned the barbecue.
The special guest for the afternoon was Elvis impersonator Dave Korotkov, by day a psychology professor at St. Thomas University. He did an excellent job of transporting his audience back 50 years to the heyday of rock n'roll.
Bishop David Edwards, asked to say the blessing, also impressed the crowd with a verse of Heartbreak Hotel. Not to be outdone, Mayor Brad Woodside crooned Fly Me To The Moon.
MLA David Coon, when he rose to speak, promised not to sing. He brought greetings from the province. He is the MLA for Fredericton South, in which the home is located.
MP Keith Ashfield also spoke, taking time from his campaign schedule to make an appearance.
"Keith Ashfield has been a supporter of this home in many ways," said Judy.
She's finding the same level of support from Mr. Coon, she said.
Fredericton city councillor Mike O’Brien also attended.
It was in 1988 that the ACW of New Brunswick, at the request of Bishop Harold Nutter, took over Farraline Place. It has been a home for the elderly since 1907 when J.N. Pauletta Fraser, wife of the lieutenant-governor, left it to be used as a home for elderly ladies. The house was built in 1809 and enjoys a phenomenal location next to the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick.
Since 1988, ACWs throughout the province have supported the home in many ways. "It's a good partnership," said Judy. "They are a great support to us — financially, with prayers and whatever we need."
There were many ACW members at the garden party, including ACW provincial president Rosemarie Kingston, who spoke. She referenced a lesson at a vacation Bible school which asked 'What would Jesus do?' "He’d have ACWs do this!" she said, noting the successful partnership of her group and the home.
The garden party has a lengthy history at Farraline Place. "It was going on when I came here in '02 so it's been going on for a long time," said Judy.