By RYAN KING
ROSE BLANCHE – HARBOUR LE COU — Monday, August 2, marked the 50th anniversary of the incorporation of the Town of Rose Blanche – Harbour Le Cou. The whole town was abuzz with excitement for the day, and the town celebrated with a variety of interesting and fun events for residents and guests.
The morning started off with the opening ceremonies at the town office. The ribbon was cut for the new town square, which has some benches and a picnic table overlooking the water. The town also opened the new fire hall to the public, and treated attendees with a slice of cake.
“We got a new truck. Most of all the gear is pretty much new. Some of it is a few years old,” said firefighter Ronald Hardy. “All this here was done through volunteer work. We raised the money and everyone on the fire department pitched in and done a few hours. From the bottom right to the top it was all volunteer work.”
The opening ceremony was attended by Mayor Clayton Durnford, the town’s first Mayor Arthur Best, and MHA Andrew Parsons (Burgeo – La Poile). Parsons was impressed by the celebrations, which he felt demonstrated the hardworking nature of the team behind the scenes in the community. Durnford noted that the turnout for the opening ceremonies was a bit small however.
“There were a few, but not a big lot, no. Down at the wharf there’s going to be some games. I can’t tell you just what – a bit of music and stuff, and around supper time we will be having soup and sandwiches at the Kinsmen Centre, and it’s free,” said Durnford.
In the afternoon there were a variety of activities scheduled on the government wharf. These included a plinko board, games of chance, ring toss, tossing toilet paper rolls into a fake toilet, and a dart game.
Music was also on tap, courtesy of the Rose Blanche Showband playing traditional Newfoundland tunes.
“It don’t cost extra to dance,” one band member said in an attempt to encourage people onto the dance floor.
On the wharf, residents were clearly enjoying themselves, with most of the children running around with the prizes they won from the games.
“We done wonderful. It turned out to be a great day. It’s nice to see people from outside coming to celebrate too as well. It’s great, and the weather turned out wonderful. Unfortunately we had to cut it short because we have to go, but hopefully the weather stays good tonight so we can enjoy the fireworks,” said Mona Harris.
“This is the kind of thing that keeps the town alive,” offered Steve Roy. “Anything that raises a few bucks for the town is good.”
The Volunteer Fire Department also set up a small area on the wharf, selling hot dogs, bologna burgers, pop, and water. For those who did not fill up there, a free soup and sandwich supper seemed to do the truck at the Kinsmen Centre.
Once the weather began to take a turn for the worse, the scheduled evening fireworks at the lighthouse site were called off. However, the weather just as easily turned favorable the following day, and the fireworks went ahead on Tuesday.