Parrywinkle, Oct 12, 2017

Well, Thanksgiving was certainly unforgiving this past long weekend. A real turkey. Weatherwise, that is. Bucketing down, power outages, delayed dinners and, to top it all off, a few flooded basements throughout town.

Ah, waddya gonna do? Give thanks for family and friends and celebrate, that's what. And there sure was a lot of that going on in Hudson this past week with several fellow Libras celebrating not just Thanksgiving but also their birthdays in fine style!

Just some that I learned of were Father Roland Demers of St. Thomas Aquinas Church, Marie-Therese Sorenson, Terry Hasenhundl, Maxine Bredt (now 98), and my favourite button accordionist in the whole wide world, long-time Manoir Cavagnal resident Doris Blaise, who has just turned 99 years young celebrating with her family, friends, Veterans, and fellow musicians, The G-Strings, at The Manoir this past Monday evening.


LEGACY OF REMEMBRANCE - Speaking of Veterans, there is a very special show coming to Hudson that is simply unique and a must-see regardless of one's age. It is called Jake's Gift and is a phenomenon that has toured across Canada and internationally for many years, winning hearts and minds everywhere it goes including Washington State, Tiverton and Birmingham in England, and to Normandy, France, for the 70th Anniversary of D-Day earlier this year, where its star, Anglophone Julia Mackey, actually performed the entire play in French in a venue right on Juno Beach!

In essence, it is a timeless and surprisingly funny, and deeply moving multi-award winning drama about a Canadian World War II Veteran's reluctant return to Normandy to find the grave of the brother who never came home. While revisiting the shores of Juno Beach, Jake - played by Julia - encounters Isabelle - also played by Julia - a precocious 10-year-old from the local village.

Her inquisitive nature and charm challenge the old soldier to confront long-ignored ghosts. Most noticeably the wartime death of his eldest brother, Chester, a once-promising young musician. But at its heart, Jake’s Gift is about the legacy of remembrance and makes personal the story behind one soldier’s grave.



Julia Mackey plays not only Jake (above) but also a precocious 10 year-old girl in the unique production that is Jake’s Gift.

WELCOME BACK JULIA - If this all sounds familiar, then it could well be that you caught the Juno Productions play at Hudson Village Theatre back in September, 2015. It was a sold-out smash hit and promises to be the same again on the same stage when it hits town for three performances November 3 and 4.

Recently, I caught up by e-mail with Julia and her hubby Dirk Van Stralen, who is also director and stage manager. They are now in their 10th season of touring Jake's Gift and were finishing their last week of shows in Prince George, B.C. before heading to Saskatoon for a two-week run there. Said Julia, “We are so much looking forward to returning to Hudson and getting reacquainted with the Veterans and friends we met there a couple of years ago. It is such a beautiful little town and we were made to feel so welcome.” The feeling is mutual Julia and we look forward to welcoming you both back!

Reservations, and tickets - with a special price for Veterans - are selling out fast, so call the HVT Box Office at (450) 458-5361 or go to Believe me, it is a production you will remember all your life!


FOR FILM FANS - Still on the entertainment scene, this Saturday, October 14, at the same venue at 2 p.m., the Hudson Film Society is showing Show Boat on screen. Not the 1950s movie but an actual stage production filmed live. A few seats at $15 a pop are still available at the door on Saturday. Then on Monday, October 16, as part of their Monday at the Movies series they will be screening the Oscar-winning film Moonlight at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. See you there?

And that's a wrap!


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