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.

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

Public input sought on proposed cannabis retail store in Coombs

Application to be reviewed by Regional District of Nanaimo

Two nature-inspired artists display oil paintings at Qualicum gallery

Judy Maxwell and Lloyd Major depict scenes of wildlife, landscapes and the west coast

Parksville seniors getting stronger with age

Weightlifting couple qualify to compete at Worlds Masters in Montreal in August

Five highlights in the 2019 federal budget

Latest budget includes a sprinkling of money for voters across a wide spectrum

‘That’s a load of crap’: Dog poop conspiracy spreads in White Rock

Allegation picked up steam through a Facebook page run by a city councillor

Explosives unit brought in after suspicious boxes left at B.C. RCMP detachment

Nanaimo RCMP issues all clear after packages were found on lawn earlier in the day

2019 BUDGET: As deficit grows, feds spend on job retraining, home incentives

Stronger economy last year delivered unexpected revenue bump of an extra $27.8 billion over six years

Newfoundland man caught after posting photo of himself drinking and driving

The 19-year-old took a photo of himself holding a beer bottle and cigarette while at the wheel

Carfentanil found in 15% of overdose deaths in January: B.C. coroner

Carfentanil is 100 times more powerful than illicit fentanyl and used to tranquilize elephants

Kids found playing darts with syringes in Vancouver Island park

Saanich police is urging people to throw out their syringes properly and safely

Disappearance of Merritt cowboy now deemed suspicious: police

Ben Tyner was reported missing when his riderless horse was discovered on a logging road

RCMP divers find Volkswagen Beetle in B.C. river, two teens still missing

A woman, 18, and boy, 15, remain missing after plunging into Pend d’Oreille River

Most Read