School memorabilia highlights annual picnic

Free event will honour French Creek Community School’s 102-year history

This photo will be among the memorabilia people can peruse at French Creek Community School on June 6 during the annual Coombs Community Picnic.

This photo will be among the memorabilia people can peruse at French Creek Community School on June 6 during the annual Coombs Community Picnic.

LISSA ALEXANDER

reporter@pqbnews.com

The annual Coombs Community Picnic on June 6 will honour the French Creek Community School, one of four elementary schools in the area slated for closure.

The event originated as a Strawberry Tea at the school back in the late 1930s and after it stopped for many years it was reactivated and made into a Community Picnic. Years later it was relocated to the Coombs Fairgrounds in order to use the kitchen and have a potluck.

This year the free event will be back at the school, honouring what the school has been over the last 102 years. From 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. people can walk through and look at memorabilia. This was compiled by volunteers Marlene Stahley and Sharon Cox-Gustavson from the Coombs Museum. From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., the Community Picnic will offer free food, live entertainment and activities.

Everyone from the surrounding communities are welcome at the event.

Anne Raffle, on the event’s organizing committee, has a long history at the school. Both her mother and father attended the school, her cousins attended (and they were one of the original families that settled in the area in 1910). Raffle was a teachers’ assistant at the school and later worked as a custodian until last November, she has a grandchild attending the school and two other grandchildren who went through the school.

“There’s quite a few others like our family around,” she said.

A number of community members, organizations and businesses have come together to help put the event on, supplying the food for the free picnic, signs, chairs, coffee, activities and much more.

Marilynn Sims, with the Arrowsmith Recreation Team, said one of the reasons so many community members have banded together for the event surrounds the closure of the school.

“This could be the last one,” she said.

From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. people can enjoy free hotdogs, popcorn and beverages while joining in on the activities which will be outside, weather dependent.

There will be live music by The Harmony Band, Gerry Barnum and Deb Ryan and the activities include pony rides, bouncy castles, button-making and face painting. There will also be a garden railway, a full-sized steam engine and free play on the field.

The 4H club will be on-site with a display, the BLT To Go bus will be in attendance, along with Arrowsmith Search and Rescue and the local Fire Department.

At 6:30 p.m., cake cutting will take place and the organizing committee will be honouring Marlene Stahley and Ingrid Tremblay, two committed community volunteers.

“They have been organizing and have really been the main organizers for this event and others for many years,” said Raffle.

 

People are welcome to bring their own picnic dinners, blankets and lawn chairs to the event.

 

 

Just Posted

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

The remains of the Mid-Island Co-op in Whiskey Creek along the Alberni Highway on Friday, June 18, after a blaze the day before devastated the gas station. (Michael Briones photo)
VIDEO: Whiskey Creek gas station destroyed by fire after camper van explosion

Nine fire departments responded to the incident, no injuries reported

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

District of Lantzville Mayor Mark Swain, left, and Snaw-Naw-As Chief Gordon Edwards sign a memorandum of understanding outside Snaw-Naw-As Market on Friday, June 18. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
Lantzville and Snaw-Naw-As sign memorandum of understanding

District and First Nation create joint working group

John Furlong told the Vancouver Board of Trade on Feb. 20, 2020 that he thinks the city could and should bid for the 2030 Winter Games. (CP photo)
A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Karl and Stephanie Ann Johanson were thrilled to spot a pair of Sandhill Cranes in the Panama Flats this month, an unusual appearance for such birds. (Photo by Stephanie Ann Johanson)
WATCH: Sandhill cranes an unusual, joyful sight in South Island parkland

These birds don’t often touch down on their way between northern B.C. and Mexico

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

(V.I. Trail/Google Maps)
Now 90% complete, Vancouver Island trail forges new funding parnership

Victoria Foundation takes on Vancouver Island Trail Association; fund valued at $40,000

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

Freighters have becomd abundant in the Trincomali Channel on the east side of Thetis Island.
Nanaimo ponders taking on waste from nearby anchored freighters

Vancouver-based Tymac petitioning the Regional District of Nanaimo to accept waste at its landfill

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Most Read