The volunteer board of the St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage is eager to present its outstanding 2013-14 season.
“This is the first year that we have been able to have our entire concert year planned from the outset,” said board member Derek Hunter. “The financial support we gained this year has allowed us to set up and publicize the full series of 10 performances.”
“I think people are going to leap to their feet cheering for the line-up at the Stage this year,” added board member, Bill Carriere.
The St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage is now an officially registered charity (able to issue tax receipts). Board members are both excited and grateful to have earned the on-going financial support of the municipality of South Dundas, as well as two years funding from Heritage Canada. “Fingers crossed, we should hear any day now from the provincial funding people as well,” said board member Sandra Whitworth. “We have also been utterly flabbergasted at the financial response we have had from our local business community. The sponsorship of area businesses has been priceless.”
In the 2012-13 concert season, the board saw a dramatic turn around in audience attendance after December. Audiences built to around 65-70 per cent capacity for each show, “very good news for us and for our funders, and for the future,” board members said.
Audiences are coming from the broader SD&G region, as well as from Cornwall, Ottawa and even from as far away as southern Ontario. Family groups are putting the Stage on their schedules: once introduced to the quality of the performers at the Stage, many young people are returning to other concerts, a trend the board is pleased to see. “We have an incredible mixture of shows scheduled, shows which will appeal to a wide range of tastes and ages,” said Whitworth. “The St. Lawrence Stage is for everyone.”
“I think there is a confidence in us now,” Carriere said, “a confidence from the public that we are going to put on good shows. We have a predictability in the level of talent we present: the performers are outstanding. People really know that they will be attending first class shows.”
There can be little doubt that a first class line up of artists is coming to the Stage.
Opening the season on September 14, is the phenomenal Shane Koyczan, who literally electrified all of North America and the world with his stunning piece in the opening ceremonies of the Vancouver Winter Olympics. “We have funding from the Eric Baker Family Foundation to thank for our ability to bring Shane here to Morrisburg,” Whitworth said.
Singer/songwriters Ian Sherwood and Coco Love Alcorn are bringing their exciting show to the Stage in October. “They play multiple instruments, including horns,” said Carriere. “They have a great, great sound!”
Artist Garnet Rogers will light up the stage in November. Rogers is regarded as one of the major folk talents of our time. He will be joined later in November by the big blues sound of the 24th Street Wailers, an explosive force on the North American festival scene, and recently featured, August 2, in the Ottawa Citizen’s Arts & Life section. In January look for the outstanding fingerstyle guitarist, Antoine Dufour, the Juno Award winning banjo playing of Old Man Luedecke in February and Chic Gamine out of Manitoba in March. With their Motown sound, and incredible four part harmonies, Chic Gamine was among the closing acts of the Vancouver Olympics. In April the band, Digging Roots, will bring the joyful energy of their hip hop, folk, reggae and blues sound to the Stage.
In keeping with their philosophy of giving up-and-coming artists a professional venue in which to perform, the St. Lawrence Stage will also present two Intimate Acoustics concerts in December and May, featuring future stars.
As they continue to bring extraordinary music and talent to South Dundas, the board is going through a bit of a re-orientation itself. Whitworth, Hunter, Carriere and Tony McCadden have been in conference with Peter MacDonald, manager of Chamberfest in Ottawa, “who worked with us on thinking through issues and ideas to ensure that we continue to exist and to grow. Even though we remain made up of volunteers, we are putting together a more professional approach to the Stage. We hope to attract more people to the board who may have different kinds of expertise.”
Currently, the sale of season’s passes for the St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage’s 2013-14 season has been extended to August 17. Check at www.st-lawrencestage.com to learn of exciting ticket options, and to book concert passes.
It will be a great series.
What does South Dundas need to achieve in the next 10 years?
The Township of South Dundas has embarked on an exciting journey to develop a Community Strategic Plan to chart the municipality’s future for the next 10 years.
The Community Strategic Plan is designed to bring together a range of interests and priorities in an integrated and balanced strategy.
Local residents, groups, and businesses are encouraged to articulate a vision that is meaningful and originates from within. Through this process, citizens will shape the long-term direction of the community.
The Township is hosting a round of community cafés in four locations across South Dundas on March 21 and March 22 to gain community feedback and advice in the creation of a Community Strategic Plan.
To assist with organizing for this event, advance registration is suggested and can be submitted by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 613-535-2673.
The four cafés are:
•March 21st from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Matilda Hall, 4241 County Road 16, Dixon’s Corners
•March 21st from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Morrisburg Meeting Centre, 12580 County Road 2, Morrisburg
•March 22nd from 2 p.m to 4 p.m. at the Iroquois Civic Centre, 1 Dundas Street, Iroquois
•March 22nd from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Williamsburg Oddfellows Hall, 12389 County Road 18, Williamsburg
If citizens are not able to attend the consultation cafés, they are encouraged to join the discussion on-line by participating in the survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/DL7QZWF.
Citizens are also encouraged to contribute to an on-line photo journal by e-mailing pictures with descriptions to email@example.com.
Please visit www.southdundas.com and click on the “Community Strategic Plan” tab for more information.
Synagri is investing $5 million in a new, state-of-th-art fertilizer pant in Chesterville.
Synagri and North Dundas officials held a press conference last week in Chesterville regarding the project that will see the company hire 10 new employees.
Construction began in late September 2014 in Chesterville, and the new site will be fully operational by the spring 2015.
“An investment of more than $5 million was needed to address the needs of our current and future clients in Eastern Ontario,” said Sylvain Lavoie, general manager of Synagri in a media release.
The new facilities will handle all products sold by Synagri; fertilizers, seed and crop protection products. “Benefiting from the railway system nearby, we will reduce our cost of product manufacturing, storage and transfer to benefit our clients.”
New systems, and increased warehousing space are marquees of this major project. Involved in the agricultural crop inputs for nearly 50 years, Synagri’s team includes 160 full time employees and 400 workers in peak periods across the Synagri network, which includes 30 service outlets in Ontario and Quebec, including one in South Dundas, near Iroquois.