Tuesday 7th August arrived and it was just as hot as the previous week so there was no alternative but to spend the morning at Barrie’s Centennial Beach and have a dip in Kempenfelt Bay.
This proved ideal relaxation before the special concert that was to be held at the Westside Lutheran Evangelical Church in the evening. Not only was this to be the last concert in Canada but it was also the last concert with the band for a number of the players who would be too old to continue in September.
Word had got round about the excellence of the Band and over 200 people packed the church for what would be a very enjoyable but also emotional concert. The Town Crier opened the proceedings.
Each concert seemed to be better than the previous (if that could be possible) and Tuesday night’s was no exception with the band finishing on a high and receiving rapturous applause and standing ovations throughout the evening.
More than a few tears were shed both in the Band and the audience and there is no question that Tewit had left an indelible impression on the people of Barrie.
Wednesday was the last full day of the visit and was spent in Toronto which is some 60 miles to the south of Barrie. After 6 days of sunshine it rained ☹️ ☔️.
First stop in Toronto was the CN Tower, a 1,815.3 ft communications and observation tower. Completed in 1976 it was the world’s tallest tower until 2007. As the weather wasn’t great that day here are a few views taken from the Tower later that week:
Look out for a further account of some of the the things to see and do in Toronto.
Trying to leave Toronto during rush hour is easier said than done and so the journey back to Barrie was a little longer than the journey from Barrie had been in the morning. Unlike other days, our destination in Barrie was not the Allandale Recreation Centre; a car park we had come to know well. Instead we headed for the Knights’ of Columbus Hall for a farewell dinner with our host families. In addition to standard beef burgers there was a chance to sample moose and buffalo burgers…
…and a last opportunity to taste the Canadian delicacy of poutine* for those who had missed it so far.
*poutine, for the uninitiated, is chips, cheese curds and gravy.
Following the meal, and thanks should go to Jean Maurice Pigeon and his family for the splendid spread, there was the formal cutting of the cakes, one of which perfectly summed up the feeling of the event.
…and so night fell on Tewit’s last day in Barrie…
Thursday 9th August, departure day, had come round far too soon. It was back to the Allandale Recreation Centre for the last time. With luggage and instruments safely stored in the coach it was time to bid farewell to our fantastic hosts who had looked after us so well for the last 9 days.
This had been a trip that will last long in the memories of all those involved and saw a further cementing of the relationship between Barrie and Harrogate. New friendships made, existing friendships strengthened and ideas for further exchanges and visits already being discussed.