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Stephen’s Backpacks BBQ gearing up for another year

By: Allison Chorney

  |  Posted: Thursday, Jun 26, 2014 11:13 am

The Scottish Tradition School of Piping dressed to the nines at last year's Stephen's Backpacks Society Canada Barbeque and will be back again this year as the organization raises funds and new shows for children in need in Airdrie and area. This year's event will take place from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on July 1 in the parkinglot of The Real Canadian Superstore.
The Scottish Tradition School of Piping dressed to the nines at last year's Stephen's Backpacks Society Canada Barbeque and will be back again this year as the organization raises funds and new shows for children in need in Airdrie and area. This year's event will take place from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on July 1 in the parkinglot of The Real Canadian Superstore.
File Photo/Rocky View Publishing

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It’s that time of year again when Canadians celebrate this proud country of ours and Airdronians gather to give back at what has become an Airdrie tradition, the Stephen’s Backpacks Society Canada Day Barbecue.

“We just feel there is such a heartbeat for helping others in this city,” said Stephen’s Backpacks Executive Director Nancy McPhee.

Stephen’s Backpacks Society was founded in 2008 to help children in need by providing backpacks filled with new school supplies. Since it was founded the Society has adopted several other projects including the Footprints campaign to collect new shoes for children in need.

The barbecue will take place from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in The Real Canadian Superstore parking lot and will feature some performances from returning favourites the Scottish Traditional School of Piping, Wilson School of Highland Dance, music from the 1950s and 1960s from Ronnie and the Fixations, Aboriginal singer/songwriter Becky Thomas and Airdrie singer/songwriter Anita Anderson, who will perform a song she wrote for the Society.

“It’s just going to be a really fun time,” McPhee said.

The event will once again be raising funds for kids in need with the $3.50 to $4.50 lunch that will be offered. This year there is a selection of a hotdog or smokie lunch and each comes with potato chips and a pop.

“Just know that every dollar you spend goes back to helping kids in need,” McPhee said.

“One hundred per cent of all proceeds go to shoes. One of the areas we’re focusing on this year is Kids Camp in Airdrie through Genesis Church. We’re going to give every single one of those kids a pair of shoes.”

She said the free kids camp is expecting about 150 kids this year.

In addition to raising funds, the event will also be accepting donations of new running shoes for kids and hope to fill a big yellow school bus with new shoes, which will go to local kids in need.

There will also be a draw for some great prizes including a framed Calgary Flames jersey signed by the members of this year’s team, a weekend getaway for two to Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel and $250 worth of groceries from The Real Canadian Superstore.

McPhee said tickets for the draw will be available for purchase until 3 p.m. on July 1.

She added chairs will be set up for families to sit and relax and staff from Drizzzles Candy Store will be on hand making snow cones.

The society will once again have a presence in the Canada Day Parade on Main Street and is incorporating music into its float this year, according to McPhee.

“We’re really excited about the parade this year,” she said. “We have some kids and members of the Centre Street Church who are providing us with a float.”

She added in addition to the float, there will be about 100 kids walking the parade route with the float who will be helping the society to hand out $1 off coupons for the barbecue.

“It’s going to be really special,” she said of the parade and barbecue.

She said every year they have hundreds of people attend the barbecue and expect the same response this year.

“It’s just about uniting again to help kids in Airdrie and the surrounding area so they can go back to school feeling good,” McPhee said.


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