Now that the holiday season has come and gone, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the past year. Many people use January as a time for reflection—a look back on the year that has come to a close—, and we at the PEI MFRC can say that had an incredible year. It was our first official year, and, boy, was it a busy one!
Let’s take a look at how 2014 was for us!
Grand Opening: April 1 (HMCS Queen Charlotte, Charlottetown)
Even though Mother Nature played a cruel joke in the form of a giant snowstorm, we hosted our grand opening event anyway. We had military members and families join in the celebrations, and we held an official ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Wear Red Road Race: April 12 (Charlottetown)
Even with the last little bit of winter hanging on, it was a pretty good day for our Wear Red Road Race. We had a great turnout, and it was so amazing and inspiring to see all that red in support of PEI’s military community. A huge thank you to all the volunteers, the Running Room, PEIR, Billy MacDonald, HMCS Queen Charlotte, Mayor Clifford Lee of Charlottetown, Mayor David Dunphy of Stratford, CSM David Ling, CO Todd Bannister, 148 Army Cadets, PEI Department of Transportation and Infrastructure, City of Charlottetown Police Department, the Board of Directors, the Centre staff . . . and of course all the runners. See you again in a few months!
BBQs: June 7 (Summerside) & June 9 HMCS Queen Charlotte (Charlottetown)
What better way to ring in summer than with a good ol’ fashioned BBQ!
AGM: June 9 (HMCS Queen Charlotte, Charlottetown)
We had our first AGM with our fabulous Board of Directors—all hard-working volunteers!
Coffee morning: June 20 (HMCS Queen Charlotte, Charlottetown)
We held our first coffee social a couple of months after we opened. Now, we look forward to our monthly drop-in coffee social time. It’s a great chance to bring together members of our PEI military community—military members, family members, staff, and volunteers.
Tip to Tip Tour: Summer (Island-wide)
Our staff had a busy, but incredible summer travelling to events all over the Island. We enjoyed meeting many new faces, hearing Islanders’ connections to the military, and letting Islanders know about the PEI MFRC. Highlights of the tour included:
- June 28: Atlanticade (Summerside)
- July 1: Canada Day (Cardigan)
- July 12: Montague Summer Days
- July 14: Summerside Lobster Festival
- July 19: Potato Blossom Festival (O’Leary)
- July 26: Prince County Exhibition (Alberton)
- August 8: Downeast Mall (Montague)
- August 9: Old Home Week (Charlottetown)
- August 15: Charlottetown Mall
- August 16: Harvest Festival (Kensington)
- August 23: River Days (Stanley Bridge)
Unit Briefings 36 Sigs & PEIR: September 6 (Charlottetown)
It’s been great chatting with all the PEI units letting them know who we are and how we can help them and their families. We’ll continue to talk to the specific units throughout 2015.
Afghanistan Memorial Wall: October 9 (Charlottetown)
We had the honor of attending the Afghanistan Memorial Vigil. Donna Earl, our executive director, accepted a Canadian flag—flown in 2011 in Afghanistan—that was presented to the PEI MFRC for their continued support to the Military Families on PEI.
Glow Bowling: October 18 (Charlottetown)
What fun we had glow bowling with our PEI military families!
Satellite Office Grand Opening: October 22 (Cardigan)
One of our major accomplishments in 2014 was opening satellite offices in Cardigan, Summerside, and Alberton. In October, we celebrated the grand opening in Cardigan.
Forces Comedy Tour/ Volunteer Recognition Night: October 24 (Charlottetown)
The military community sure gets its fill of serious—we were grateful to have a few laughs when the Forces Comedy Tour came to town. The same evening saw us recognize our hard-working volunteers and celebrate their contributions.
Veteran’s Tribute: October 26 (Charlottetown)
The City of Charlottetown honoured the following eight people for their military service during the 2014 Veterans Recognition Awards:
- Major T. Kent MacRae
- Chief Warrant Officer Douglas B. MacDonald
- Warrant Officer Shane D. Flanagan
- Sergeant Benjamin E. Miller
- Master Corporal Peter Simpson
- Master Corporal Nigel MacDonald
- Warrant Officer Robert G. Schnarr
- Mr. Clayton MacLeod
Those eligible for the Veterans Recognition Awards include men and women who served in the Armed Forces of Canada during the Second World War, the Korean War or in a Special Duty Area, which is generally referred to as a peacekeeping mission.
Remembrance Day Cenotaph Ceremony & Daniel J MacDonald Open House: November 11 (Charlottetown)
We were honoured to participate in the annual cenotaph ceremony at the Charlottetown War Memorial. Donna Earl laid a wreath on behalf of the PEI MFRC.
Morale Mail Campaign: December 3 (Charottetown)
PEI MFRC staff and volunteers spread some Christmas cheer by preparing Christmas parcels for PEI military working overseas. What a great way to show Christmas cheer!
Festive Family Fun Day: December 6 (HMCS Queen Charlotte, Charlottetown)
PEI MFRC staff and volunteers enjoyed celebrating the holiday season with PEI military members and their families. It was a fabulous afternoon full of face painting, balloon twisting, musical entertainment, inflatables, and, of course, a visit from the big guy in red!
. . . No wonder our staff was looking a bit tired before the holidays! What a fantastic year. We are enthusiastic about what 2015 has in store for us, and we have many ideas about how we’ll be interacting with the PEI military community.