It’s time for a homecoming in Argenteuil.
A successful reunion for past and present residents of Lachute was held in 2014, and now plans are being made for a reunion to encompass the entire MRC d’Argenteuil in 2019.
The date is August 2 to 4, 2019. It will begin with a Friday night meet-and-greet at the legion hall in Brownsburg. Most of the event, though, will take place at the flea market grounds in Lachute.
The group behind the reunion project is Our Communities, Our Heritage/Nos communautés, notre patrimoine. It was founded in March 2018 with the purpose of raising awareness of local history and heritage.
The idea behind the reunion is to bring together anyone who has—or had, a connection to communities in Argenteuil.
The people planning the reunion also want the bilingual character of Argenteuil to be strongly represented.
“We’re trying to emphasize more of that this time,” said Ruthanna Barlow, secretary of the reunion committee.
Right now, the event is being promoted online through the “Lachute as we remember” group on Facebook. The online group has more than 5,600 members and is a place to share photos and memories of life in the community from past decades.
Organizers are hoping to attract more than 2,000 visitors to the 2019 reunion, but there is still a lot of work to be done.
The committee is hoping to include displays from local organizations, or about the history of local families and industries that visitors can look at during the Saturday portion of the festivities.
Those displays can include photos, video, and actual artifacts.
Committee members gave long-time Lachute blanket manufacturer Ayers as one example. The Cascades paper mill was formerly owned by the Wilson family. The Malaket family, which owns a furniture store in Hawkesbury, first launched its furniture business in Lachute.
The explosives and munitions industry has a long history in Brownsburg. Canadian Industries Limited (CIL) once had 5,000 employees. Today the facility is owned by Orica, an Australian company and employs about 300 people. Susan Kuhnel, the treasurer of the reunion committee, worked there for 42 years.
Organizers also want to host displays on the role clubs and lodges have played, and continue to play in local communities, along with railway transportation.
The Saturday portion of the reunion will also include live music, both during the day, and later at night for dancing.
The 2014 Lachute reunion was entirely self-financed, and organizers are so far doing the same thing for 2019. The committee is hoping for financial support from the MRC and its member municipalities. Monetary donations or sponsorships from interested individuals, organizations, and businesses are also greatly appreciated.
Pre-sales of tickets for the Argenteuil Our Communities, Our Heritage/Nos communautés, notre patrimoine reunion are on now.
It only costs $20 to enjoy a weekend of catching up with old friends, family, and reminiscing. The event will proceed, rain or shine.
For tickets, or to find out how to get involved, call Patricia Joly at 450-562-3661 or Charles Lefebvre at 450-562-3298. Or, email [email protected]
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