A number of Lloydminster residents have helped to fundraise for the Canadian Cancer Society.
Donations were collected from the generous attendees of the charity viewing party event for the Tragically Hip’s live concert broadcast by the CBC, last month.
The iconic Canadian band played the final tour stop of their Man Machine Poem Tour in their hometown of Kingston, Ontario on Saturday, August 20, 2016, which was available on TV and via online stream from the CBC.
The show was likely the last show with frontman, Gord Downie, who received a tragic diagnosis of terminal brain cancer several months ago.
The ‘That Night in Lloydminster’ viewing party event took place downtown beside the Root: Community Emporium on 49 Street and brought in $1,128 for the Society.
“It went awesome. The turnout, I would say, was more than I could have ever expected, so that was great. And I think everything went relatively smoothly, and everyone had a lot of fun,” says event organizer, Tonia Robinson.
“I heard a lot of people say that it was something different to do. It was cool for everyone to come together like that and to be hanging out and socializing in the street, as opposed to maybe sitting in like a restaurant or a bar or something, watching the show.”
Despite one glaring hiccup, Robinson says she felt good about the event; the projection of the live feed onto the screen was essentially invisible for half the show, as the show was scheduled for 8:00 p.m. ET, while in Lloydminster at 6:00 p.m. the sun is still far from setting. Even so, most of the attendees stayed and listened to the music, chatted, and got snacks and drinks from the variety of local vendors that were invited to park their food trucks or set up booths on the closed-off street. At one point, a group got up and danced, and when the screen was visible, the majority of viewers were evidently content.
Robinson took on the project on her own, stepping up and volunteering her time, solely out of her love of the band, and wanting to put on an event for the community.
She was able to secure several community partners to keep the event entirely free of charge, and merely asking kindly for donations. Particularly, All About Bouncing supplied the inflatable projector screen, the Root joined on to provide the licensed establishment, the City allowed for the street closure, and Oasis Hot Yoga Studio provided the WiFi. As a result, 100 per cent of the proceeds will be going to charity.
According to Robinson, her idea for doing the viewing party came from a similar event being organized by a radio station near her hometown. She says she’s not sure if she’d take on organizing something like this again, but is pleased with how it turned out and the funds raised.
“I guess if the right opportunity came up and something kind of like this presented itself again, I would consider it. I don’t think I’m going to make a career out of it by any means.”
The funds were collected by volunteers on Synergy Credit Union’s corporate Relay for Life team, who will be participating in the 2017 event here in town (traditionally held the first weekend in June at Bud Miller All Seasons Park), and donating the funds to the Society at that time.