A cornucopia of food, music and fun is being planned to raise funds and get everyone (and the dog) out together for an afternoon.
The second Corn Boil Challenge is being held from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. Sept. 8 at the Avondale Heritage Museum. Barry Braun, one of the organizers, says this fundraiser is the latest in a series of Happy Community Projects that are taking place in communities all over West Hants and the Halifax Regional Municipality.
“It’s an afternoon of family fun, like an old-fashioned community picnic,” he said. “Many people have said, ‘like it used to be.’ It’s a chance for people in the community to come out and have some fun getting to know each other.”
The afternoon features lots of corny games and challenges for people of all ages, like one arm corn husking, something that takes corn-centration. Other games will have people playing by ear: corn sack races, corn obstacle races, a corn cob relay, corn tug of war, a cornball tournament, three-legged races, a corn obstacle race, corn target shooting and, of course, a corn toss.
“It’s all pretty corny, but that’s the point,” he said. People are invited to enter teams, whether it’s an entire family, or a corporate team. All teams in the Corn Boil Challenge have a chance to vie for bragging rights of keeping the Kernel Cob Trophy for one year.
Even the dogs are invited to get in on the action, with the Corn Dog Dress-up prize handed out to the best dressed mutts. Funds raised at the event will go to support the work of Happy Community Project, a group that is working to build strong communities now and for the future.
“The goal of the Happy Community Project is to strengthen the social connectedness across diversity of communities so that there is a deeper culture of citizens taking care of each other,” said Braun. “Our children and grandchildren are depending on us to leave them this kind of legacy.”
Braun started this group a few years ago after his granddaughter was born. He said he began to imagine what the world would be like when she was an adult, and he feared the worst. He wanted to take action to ensure that the communities of the future would still know the value of working and playing together.
The group has been working to help various communities facilitate their own projects aimed at enhancing the quality of life of residents. Community gardens, breakfasts, markets and youth groups have been popping up, and a new feeling of vitality and unity is beginning to replace the divisiveness of the past few years, he said.
“We’re starting to see vibrant communities, and people are taking pride in the area,” he said. “The downtown core in Windsor is being revitalized and new businesses are moving in.”
The Happy Community Project supports initiatives that increase the social connections within a community. The process is designed so that most citizens in a community want to be part of the project and have something that they can contribute.
“The reality is that people are busy, stressed and over committed,” he said. “We are creating opportunities for people to find ways of getting involved in their communities again, and making them into better places to live.”
He added that the group is now developing toolkits that other communities can use to start their own projects. Ever since the Happy Communities initiative started, he has been hearing from people wanting to make the future brighter for themselves and their children.
“People are looking for ways to fix the world,” he said. “We once had communities of people who knew each other, helped each other. We need to build this again.”
To find out more about the Happy Communities Projects visit the group’s website www.happycommunityproject.com
IF YOU GO
The Corn Boil Challenge takes place Sept. 8 from 1 until 5 p.m. at the Avondale Heritage Centre at 17 Belmont Rd., Newport Landing. For more information on the Corn Boil Challenge and to enter a team, go to https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/corn-boil-challenge-2019-tickets-65262907112