County Recognizes Exceptional Citizens of All Stripes

On Friday, May 27th, the County held its annual Recognition awards in Havelock for citizens making significant contributions to their communities.

Among the winners for Cavan Monaghan Township were John and Susan French, who were recognized for their agricultural leadership. For the past 38 years, they have raised beef cattle on their 150 acre farm in Millbrook fed on hay and corn from their fields and without the use of growth hormones. In addition to farming, John and Susan have been active members of both their community in many ways. John has been active as the Past President of the Peterborough Holsteins Club and a member of the 4H Club, the Millbrook Lions Club and St. Thomas’ Anglican Church while Susan is the Past President of the Millbrook Manor Board. Their commitment to the agricultural industry is demonstrated by the fact that while approaching retirement, they continue to have a presence at the Millbrook Farmers’ Market and maintain their farm-gate sales.

The Business Leadership/Entrepreneurial Innovation award for the township was awarded to The Pastry Peddler, whose relocation and expansion in February 2015 combined their love of cycling with their love of food, and has resulted in a landmark food attraction drawing loyal customers from the local community, in addition to visitors and cyclists, who build a stop into their restaurant into their planned routes. Their expansion increased seating to 25, and they expanded both their menu offerings and hours of operation to satisfy a growing demand for their coffee and food, striving to incorporate local products including Frenchs’ beef and local craft beer to address the growing demand to know the source of our food.

This year the Community Volunteer of the Year for the township was rewarded to Glen Spurrell for his participation on many community organizations. In the five years since his relocation to Millbrook following his retirement, Glen Spurrell has found many local organizations who appreciate his expertise and generous spirit. Since arriving in Millbrook, Glen has tirelessly given of his time to the Historical Society, the Millbrook Valley Trails, the Garden Club, the Library Board and most recently, the Cavan Monaghan Barn Quilt Trail Committee. For the past three years, Glen has also been encouraging a love of nature and the outdoors to our readers through his monthly “Get Out!” column.

The Youth award for the township was handed out to 13 year old Paige Coulter Van-Sickle who last fall was selected by scouts to play hockey on an International Select Octane Elite Hockey Team, an international select hockey team comprising girls one to two years older than Paige. The Team travelled to Sweden and Finland this past April to participate in the World Selects Hockey Invitational playing against 13 other teams, including Russia, Sweden, Finland, USA, and Latvia. Paige’s team lost in the semi-finals by a shoot-out, placing fourth overall. Paige has high hopes and admits that one day she hopes to play for Team Canada at the Olympics.

Twenty-four year old Cody Caldwell is a new member of the Canadian wheelchair rugby national team and is this year’s recipient of the Sports Excellence Award. His progress has been followed in this paper, since he switched his hockey career for wheelchair rugby after a diving accident left him with serious injuries. In 2013 he joined the national Wheelchair Rugby team; earned a silver medal in the 2014 World Championships, a gold medal in Toronto’s ParaPan Games last summer and this year is headed to Rio de Janeiro to represent Canada in the 2016 Paralympic Games.

Funfolk Theatricals took home the award for Leadership in Arts and Culture. This group has provided entertainment for all ages in its annual show held during March break for the past seven years. The group provides an opportunity for volunteers of all ages to work on the production team and/or in the cast. Producers Shan McFadden, Pat Barr and Jackie Franco begin rehearsals for the March show in January. The production is full of original songs, dance numbers, jokes, audience participation, and the young participants also learn important lessons about the environment and respectful living.

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