• James Parry

Parrywinkle November 19, 2015

Physically, I have been in Hudson this past week. Emotionally, together with my beautiful Sunshine and like countless Your Local Journal readers I'm sure, I have been 3,000 miles away in Paris, the City of Lights. A city synonymous with not only 'joie de vivre' but also 'liberty, equality, fraternity.' The catastrophic carnage on the part of bloody terrorists - what other word is there to describe them? - making front page headlines and sending shock waves throughout the civilized world. A city that I have visited only once. But one that Mireille knows like the back of her hand having been there on over 50 occasions reporting on major fashion shows and interviewing French celebrities for francophone radio, television, and magazines here in Quebec and Canada.

What can one possibly say that hasn't already been said over the past few days? All too easy to say that 'We are Paris.' That our hearts go out to the victims, their families and loved ones, even though they do. That all eyes here are now on our new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, and the Liberal Party for their response to the atrocity, given their election promises regarding Canada's participation in the war against ISIL and their pledge to welcome some 25,000 Syrian refugees by the end of the year. His promise of 'sunny days' ahead suddenly seems threatened by global storm clouds not of his making. And that's putting it mildly.

Meanwhile, let us give thanks that here in Hudson and surrounding region, we live in a very special and peaceful part of the world despite our problems - and let's not go there right now - where it surely is starting to sound a lot like Christmas. When loving families and those living alone of all faiths and denominations will be coming together for church services, good food, gift giving, laughter, and joyous memories of holidays past in true community spirit!

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FABULOUS FESTIVAL WEEKEND - Something that will certainly be front and centre at the Stephen F. Shaar Community Centre on Friday, December 4, when for the first time in years, the traditional Lighting of the Lights complete with flickering candles, hot chocolate, and youngsters singing carols moves from in front of the Town Hall in a joint initiative on the part of the Hudson Merchants Association and the administration. Inside the centre, from 3 p.m. to 8.30 p.m., the annual Hudson Merchants Market will showcase local businesses with a plethora of great gift-giving items and stocking stuffers.

And some new attractions this time around courtesy of the SDC. For example, an authentic festive Scottish bagpiper à la Holiday spirit, crazy and zany holiday games for the kids such as 'Pin the Tail on our Mascot' and more about that later. Also an Ugliest Sweater contest as well as a Family Movie screened for the youngsters so their parents can shop to their hearts' delight, and face painting sponsored by Penny Petz. Then on Saturday, December 5, in what has become one of the most popular events at this time of year, Father Roland Demers of St. Thomas Church, will conduct the Blessing of the Pets in front of the Community Centre. The following day, Sunday, December 6, Hudson's Santa Claus Parade will wend its way along Main Road from Côte St. Charles to Cameron beginning at 1 p.m. with the theme A Sci-Fi Christmas.

Meanwhile, as for that SDC Hudson Christmas Merchant Mascot dressed by member Kel Deegan (see photo below), well it is looking for a name. And if you would like to propose one, and perhaps win a prize in the process, then go to the association's Facebook page SDC Hudson Village or email info@SDChudson.com. And please, no Rudolphs or Prancers or Dancers or whatever. After all, I really don't think he, or she, is a reindeer!

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WALKING TO BETHLEHEM - Still on the festive scene, there's a truly magical and most moving theatrical experience coming once again to St. Lazare beginning that same weekend when, every year for the past 10 years, thousands of visitors from far and wide have flocked to partake in A Walk to Bethlehem recreated and re-enacted in the spacious grounds of the Hudson Community Baptist Church just near the Four Corners.

With a cast and crew of over 200 volunteers, including costumed actors and singers, as well as camels, donkeys, and barnyard animals, it truly is a joy to behold. Have been there as a traveler for the past three. And, while the story as told in the Bible may not have changed in 2000 years and we all know how it unfolds, can't wait to do so once again!