$5,000 arrives in Holiday Train boxcar for Dundas County Food Bank

Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

Nelson Zandbergen
Nation Valley News

FINCH — Before they had even counted food and cash donations from the crowds in Finch, the Dundas County Food Bank cleared $5,000 from the CP Holiday Train’s Nov. 27 visit to the North Stormont village.

Standing in a boxcar before the assembled throng of about 4,000 people, Food Bank administrator Ian McKelvie received a cheque of $4,000 from the railway company. CP’s Holiday Train initiative has raised over $12-million for food banks and 3.9 million pounds of food along the train since its start 18 years ago, a company emcee announced as the funds were handed to the local food bank head.

That donation was preceded by North Stormont Mayor Dennis Fife handing McKelvie a $1,000 cheque, proceeds from another event that just keeps on giving — the 2015 International Plowing Match in Finch.

Some observers felt that attendance may have been down a bit from the estimated 6,000 people that turned out for the Christmas-themed train’s Finch debut in 2015. But the weather cooperated, the community embraced the spectacle with a series of special events that filled the day, and the lineup on stage — quite frankly — was more impressive than last year. Canadian country star Dallas Smith was accompanied by Odds, the band perhaps best known for the opening track on Canadian TV staple Corner Gas. With special-effects smoke billowing out of the boxcar as the sidewall lowered to become a stage, the group stepped forward and launched into Not a Lot Goin’ On for their first number. Smith sang his new single and had the crowd rocking with Run Run Rudolph.

Update: The Dundas County Food Bank’s Ian McKelvie says that other collections and donations that day amounted to “$2,130 and 2,398 lbs of food. That’s down compared to last year but not unexpected given the smaller crowd,” said McKelvie on Monday of this week.

Storm Internet Services — on site that day to raise awareness about the rollout of their expanded North Stormont wireless coverage — contributed $500 to the tally.


In the video above, North Stormont Mayor Dennis Fife, Deputy Mayor Bill McGimpsey and Ian McKelvie of the Dundas County Food Bank celebrate the train’s arrival and special donations totalling $5,000 for the local charity.


See the video above for the CP Holiday Train’s arrival in Finch, along with highlight performances by Dallas Smith and Odds.



See the photo gallery above of the Nov. 27 events in Finch.


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