The Windsor and District Lions Club’s inaugural paint-off fundraiser didn’t draw the crowd that organizers had hoped for — but it did provide a fun night for those in attendance.
Ten local dignitaries, with paintbrushes in hand, competed on stage at the Hants County War Memorial Community Centre in Windsor Sept. 28 to try to create the best work of art to be auctioned off at the conclusion of the fundraiser.
Sgt. Mike Balmaceda, of the Windsor rural RCMP detachment, took home the bragging rights for his painting.
Marny Spinney, the event organizer, said she was disappointed by the lack of community support — most seats were empty — but her heart was happy when she heard how much was raised.
After expenses, the fundraiser brought in about $5,000; $3,200 of which came from the artwork that was auctioned off during a live and silent auction. Artists from across the province, including some well-known Hants County residents, contributed to the cause.
The event featured the Brian Johnston Jam providing the tunes for the evening and Lloyd Smith emceeing.
“Everyone that was there, they said it was a well put-together event, the music was fantastic, the food was fantastic. They just had a blast,” said Spinney in a phone interview following the fundraiser. “It’s a... shame that everybody else in the community didn’t show up to take part in it.”
Spinney said she was surprised to find out how many people aren’t aware of what the service club does in the community, and she’s vowed to change that.
From hosting benefit breakfasts to providing medical supplies and glasses, Spinney said the Windsor and District Lions Club is often at the forefront of helping those in need.
“We help our most vulnerable citizens out there,” said Spinney. “It’s going to be my mission (to let people know).”
Spinney said the paint-off event was the first fundraiser she’s helped organize, but it won’t be her last. She’s hoping to hold an open house in the near future to further spread the word about what the organization does in the community.
“I think if everyone understands what the Lions club represents and how we represent everyone equally, I think we would get much better support.”
DID YOU KNOW?
• The Windsor and District Lions Club meets the second and fourth Monday of the month at 7 p.m. in the Lions Den at the Hants County War Memorial Community Centre in Windsor. New members are always welcome.
• Throughout the year, the Windsor and District Lions Club loans out medical equipment to community members in need and provides eyeglasses to those who cannot afford prescription lenses. The club also hosts a monthly fundraising breakfast, gives out $1,500 in bursaries to local students annually, provides a yearly $1,000 donation to the seniors’ community bus as well as to Camp Lion Maxwell for Cavalcade Of Diabetes.
• Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization with more than 1.4 million members in more than 200 countries around the world.