Airdronians will once again be asked to don yellow caps to support Stephen’s Backpacks Society and celebrate Yellow Hat Day, May 4. According to society president Nancy McPhee, the yellow hats signify “people taking action and getting involved in the community.”
“The yellow hat is very symbolic of us all uniting in our community,” she said. “We’re going to make our community a brighter place to live in just by being here and taking action.”
According to McPhee preparations are well underway for the second annual Yellow Hat Day gala taking place at Apple Creek Golf Course beginning at 5:30 p.m., with a full evening for adults and children alike.
Kids will enjoy a Star-Wars-themed party downstairs at the clubhouse with games, pizza and a viewing of one of the Star Wars movies.
Upstairs, meanwhile, adults will be treated to a roast beef dinner, dancing and live music by the George McDougall High School Midnight Mustangs jazz band and Airdrie’s Fraid Knot.
Tickets for the event are available online at stephensbackpacks.com or by emailing McPhee at [email protected], and cost $25 per child and $60 per adult. A table of eight can also be purchased for $450.
McPhee added tickets are already selling fast, and the event has capacity for 240 adults and around 100 children.
The fundraiser, first held in 2018, began as a commemoration of Stephen’s Backpacks Society’s late president, Jim McPhee. This year, McPhee said the organization is looking towards the future. At the gala, the society will unveil its latest initiative, the A-Team, which will mentor children with autism who are interested in carpentry.
“I know my husband would not want us to keep harping on the memory of him. He was a very humble man,” McPhee said. “That we celebrated his memory last year is wonderful, but I think he would want us to move on.”
The first gala was an overwhelming success, McPhee said, raising more than $20,000 and enabling the organization to double the amount of backpacks it handed out to children in need from 3,000 to 6,000.
“I just can’t even put it into words, what a privilege it is to put this event on,” McPhee said.
Funds raised through the gala will help support the work of the organization, she said, adding the community continues to be incredibly supportive, which she feels is a distinguishing feature of the city.
“When the rubber hits the road and somebody’s down or there’s a fire or there’s a tragedy, Airdrie comes together,” McPhee said.
The festivities will also extend into the rest of the weekend, McPhee said, with members of the Stephen’s Backpacks Society team patrolling the city prior to the gala, looking for individuals wearing the yellow hats May 3 and 4. Anybody spotted with one of the hats will be entered into a draw for a chance to win $500 worth of groceries from Real Canadian Superstore, a trip for two to Fairmont or a $3,000 diamond necklace.