Kettle district hosts spring conference

The 59th Kettle Women's Spring Conference brought together women from across the Boundary.

Spring blooms decked the fairground hall and Bloomer Fashions entertained the guests at the 59th Kettle District Women’s Institute Spring Conference. The members heard reports from Main River WI, Sunshine Valley WI, Bridesville WI, Rock Creek WI as well as a report from the Homemakers Club from Arden Washington. All clubs support their communities in a variety of ways: educational/ social events, good deeds, financial support, ongoing local projects and also projects in developing countries through ACWW. BC Children’s Hospital is one of BCWI’s recipients for the past 100 years.

A donation to BCWI was made in recognition of Life Members, Margaret Eek, Marie Bourgh, Jean Johnson, Mary Cannon and Louise Fossen. Margaret Eek led us in remembrance of members, Molly McArthur and Mary McMurtry.

Half of the ladies attending wore a homemade “fascinator” with judges picking Carmella Theroux’s mossy, dew jewelled, flower powered, fetching creation for first place. In the cookie decorating, the Hawaiian “hula girls”, by Ruth Champagne were a definite hit. An apron with multiple activity pockets attached was designed and created for Alzheimer patients by Hazel Self. This apron, as well as some “1st” place jam made by Shelly Nakatsu, and a speech “What WI Means to Me” by Delores McNee, will travel on to Kelowna for the provincial BCWI Triennial competitions to take place in June.

A letter from Jill Copes BCWI President was read. It mentioned the participating dignitaries from around the world who will be addressing the Kelowna Conference. (These included Associated Country Women of the World President, ACWW United Nations committee Chair, Federated Women’s Institute Canada President as well as local dignitaries, Mayor of Kelowna and B o u n d a r y Similkameen MLA). Members from Kettle River District are helping to host this event and are anticipating lively discussion mixed with interesting workshops and entertainment.

Elections for the new Kettle River District board were held in the afternoon and by acclamation Norma Tilgner was returned as President, Delores McNee as Vice President, and Directors chosen were Lynne McKillican, Linda Dixon, and Donna Scott. Ruth Champagne was appointed Treasurer and Sharon Funnell was appointed Secretary.

With light entertainment provided by the 4 Blooming Bloomer Models (Brenda Schmalz, Mary Cannon, Delores McNee, Roberta Nott and MC Sharon Funnell) the hall erupted in laughter and the models gave us a taste of their creativity with variations on an old fashioned garment “the bloomer”. A sweet young bloomer scooted around the hall, an adventurous world travelling bloomer hiked in with sunglasses and backpack, a newlywed bloomer gyrated in a tasselled item and a matron in lace minced in with a “nature calls” adaptation. Word has it they may be asked to perform again!

The key workshop in the afternoon program was on Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation. Judy Latendre answered questions and described critical scenarios as members availed themselves of the many mannequins to practice. This was followed by a demonstration of a defibrillator. An excellent presentation!

The courtesy report by Linda Dixon gave thanks to Rock Creek WI for hosting the day, and she extended the invitation to all members to join the Sunshine Valley WI at next year’s Spring Conference in Grand Forks.

President Norma Tilgner encouraged members and branches who are looking for a project, to link with other volunteer community groups; these included 4-H Club, Rock Creek Medical Society, Midway Public Library, and a new group focused on developing supported living in a mixed housing project.

Interested in joining us? Contact numbers are in local papers. We are WI: Women Interested, Informed, Involved


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