Strength training began at West Ferris Secondary School at 6:30 p.m. and continued weekly until the first week in May. Under the very capable guidance of instructors Melody and Mark team members kept fit during the winter months.
The Warriors of Hope held their Annual General Meeting in the PHARA Recreation Room at 7:00 p.m. Coffee and homemade cookies followed the AGM business and speaker Warrior Tish Wilson, who regaled members with some very interesting stories about her work in the Far North..
The Annual Dragon Toss fundraiser on Sunday March 1 at Memorial Gardens was a resounding success again. Our thanks to Warrior Lise and husband Dave who organized the event and to all the volunteers. A special vote of appreciation to the SkyHawks for their continued support of this fund-raiser for the Warriors.
Our dragonboat, 'Jane' was completely refurbished for the beginning of her tenth year on the water. The process began with an application for a Trillium Grant to refinish the boat, add decals and a new cover. Jane came out of the water in October 2008 and then made her way to Geilser boat works in Powassan. Stored over winter, the firefighters turned Jane so the new decals and cover could be applied. On May , a special media launch was held to kick off our 10'th season. The Ontario Trillium Foundation representative, Carol Ann Di Bartolomeo brought greetings as did our MPP, Monique Smith. MP Anthony Rota, a strong Warrior supporter, wished the team continued success on the water and Mayor Vic Fedeli reiterated the thanks given to volunteers. Peter Sirrs presented the /Kathy Sirrs/ award to Bonnie Marshall as the team member who best represented Kathy’s spirit in 2008. A ceremonial paddle ended the morning. Jane, with her new decals will now be a visible reminder to everyone who sees her on Trout Lake that the Warriors of Hope are an active advocate in Breast Cancer awareness.
The second annual Yard Sale was held at 1350 Fisher Street. A large quantity of goods changed hands and the Warriors wish to thank everyone who attended for the success of sale. The annual yard sale is an important fundraiser for the team.
The Warriors attended a Paddling Clinic with Mike and Andrea from Alkame Dragon Boat Service from Picton. The weather was cool however, paddlers had an excellent workout and refreshed their techniques.
The Warriors of Hope attended two Relays for Life this year. Sherry young was event captain for the Trout Creek Relay while Mary Willard captained the North Bay event. Warriors placed luminaries at the events in memory of past members.
The Warriors of Hope travelled to New Liskeard this year to attend the 3rd Annual Lions Club Dragon Boat Festival. The Carnation Ceremony was an impressive event for the many spectators who lined the waterfront. MCTV covered the event and the Warriors were delighted to give interviews and demonstrations, promoting breast cancer awareness and the value of dragon boating after cancer.
The North Bay waterfront has a new flowerbed in the shape of a Pink Ribbon. The Ribbon, the symbol of the fight against Breast Cancer, will have pink petunias in the summer and pink tulips in the spring. The wet, cool weather this year has not been to the petunias’ liking but the gardening committee of Weed Warriors are looking forward to getting a jump on the season next year.
North Bay Dragon Boat Festival
The 10th annual Dragon Boat Festival was a great success for the Warriors. Six out-of-town breast cancer survivor teams joined the Warriors in celebration of ten years of paddling. Each team received a hamper of goodies and special Warriors’ wine as they were welcomed to the city. Race day was cloudy but the rain skirted around the race site on Trout Lake. The dragon was awakened and the boats blessed . Pink Sensations from Pickering were the big winners of the day. All the survivors joined in the arch parade after the race. The festivities concluded that evening with a barbeque party at the Kelusky’s home on Trout lake.
The Warriors of Hope Annual Golf Tournament held at Clear Springs Golf Course was a resounding success this year. A full registration of 36 teams attended on a perfect day for golf. The day began with team photos taken by Rod and Shirley with Jane’s Dragon regalia. The souvenir photos were also shown on the video screen inside during dinner. The winning team, by retrogression with a 59, were presented with plaques and the trophy. Marg again was our MC and worked right through a delicious dinner selling draw tickets. The winner of the 50-50 draw was only too happy to give Marg Moody a big hug! There was a special surprise presentation by Ray Sabourin, a local archer, who has initiated a ‘Pink Arrow’ program for archers. Archer may purchase a pink arrow to carry in their quiver to show support for Breast Cancer Research and the Warriors. (The arrows are never used in contests.) Warrior Tania was a draw winner but the biggest round of applause went to Warrior Betty who attended and worked despite currently undergoing chemo.
The Warriors of Hope participated in a huge way again in the CIBC Run for the Cure this October. The Warriors collected the largest amount of pledges for any women’s team and this year, Warrior Sylvia Gray collected the most money of any North Bay and area participant. Way to go, Sylvia! Run for the Cure captain, Liz Chirico, ‘won’ again by having her son cross the finish line first.
The Weed Warriors were busy at the popular waterfront walking area in October as they took out the bed of pink petunias and planted dozens of pink tulip bulbs, carefully placing them pointy side up. The floral pink ribbon flowerbed drew many favourable comments this past season as people paused to reflect on family and friends who have been touched by breast cancer.
December was a month of giving and receiving for the Warriors of Hope. On December 18, the Warriors, represented by Chris, Gloria and Shelley, were at Twiggs coffee shop to join the EZ Rock hosts to present a cheque to the North Bay Santa Fund. Chris made the on-air announcement that the Warriors had raised $708.00 at their Christmas party this year (passing last year’s record). Even the ‘Elf’ was happily surprised at the amount.
On December 16, Bruce Monroe, representing Scotiabank, handed the Board of Director’s a cheque for $10,000. Board President and Paddling member of the Warriors, Diana Walton thanked Bruce for Scotiabank’s continuing support that is so important in helping the Warriors of Hope meet their mandate of breast cancer awareness and promoting an active lifestyle after breast cancer.