Pincourt Rousseau Wetlands concert fundraiser deemed a success
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
The band Mariner’s Curse performs at a special fundraising event last Saturday, June 15, on behalf of the environmental group Pincourt Vert which is committed to saving the Rousseau Wetlands from development.
Over 100 people attended a successful fundraiser staged by the local environmental group Pincourt Vert on June 15. The event at Saint-Patrick of the Island Parish Church was held to raise money and continue promoting the preservation of the Rousseau Wetlands, also known as Place Pierre-Brunet, which the group regards as the last forest wetland in Pincourt close to the Ottawa River.
Pincourt Vert has spent the past two years making citizens aware that the wetlands are slated to be razed to make way for a new 47-unit residential development project. The group has also consistently attended every council meeting for the past 14 months trying to sway Mayor Yvan Cardinal and six councillors to preserve the woods for future generations to enjoy.
That sentiment was echoed by the musical acts who performed for the enthusiastic crowd last Saturday afternoon – The Kimberley Beyea Trio, Mariner’s Curse, a solo performance by John McGale (the principal composer of the legendary Quebec rock band Offenbach) and McGale’s closing duet with Charlie MacLeod.
“It’s fantastic. It’s really uplifting to have an event like this where we have great music, a committed public and musicians that have been absolutely stunning on stage,” said Green Coalition Vice-President David Fletcher. “We need more of a combination of musicians and artists with people committed to saving nature. It’s a natural.”
Raising environmental awareness
Fletcher feels the fundraiser helped to highlight the plight of the wetlands regarding its possible fate. He said similar events could be held to raise awareness about other environmentally sensitive areas on and off the Island of Montreal.
“I think people are going to be talking about this particular event. I’m hoping we can do more things like this. People came to this event and learned more about nature. I’m very encouraged by the turnout and that the artists saw this as a valuable event to be playing at. It was impressive and professional all around,” said Fletcher.
Charlie MacLeod, who is involved with Pincourt Vert through the Green Coalition, helped to organize the music and got the musicians on board for the cause. “It went great,” he said.
“The crowd was fantastic. We’re happy. We spread the word, got the message out, and had some entertainment and fun at the same time. As a former musician I helped to put some of the music and groups together,” said MacLeod.
‘Clean up our own backyard’
McGale, an ardent scuba diver for the past 22 years, said he’s noticed the mess that’s been occurring in the oceans and along the beaches. He drove six-and-half hours from his home in North Bay, Ontario to show his support and help raise money for the fundraiser. He donned a green T-shirt adorned with a turtle especially for the event.
“This is such an important issue; I didn’t want to miss it,” McGale told The Journal. “It’s very clear to me that we have to clean up our own backyard. We have to make sure the animals we share this planet with have a place to live. We can’t continue as humans to be so selfish and to destroy everything that we lay our hands on. We don’t own the planet. It’s on loan to us from our children.”
Event organizer Shelagh McNally was also pleased with the turnout.
“This has been an amazing experience for me,” she said. “It started off two years ago with me walking around the neighbourhood with a photocopied note. From that it’s grown into Pincourt Vert and a community organization. A lot of people are coming out to say they’re really passionate about Pincourt and keeping it green.”
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