Enjoy Dutch Heritage night at the Chesterville Legion, April 14

Mikayla Verspeek, 16, carries a tray of "bitterballen" — a traditional deep-fried Dutch croquette snack. It was the featured hors d'oeuvre at the 12th annual Dutch Heritage Night at the Chesterville Legion, April 8, 2017. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

Dance the night away — with or without klompen

CHESTERVILLE — Have a ball at the upcoming 13th annual Dutch Heritage Day dinner and dance event.

Make that bitterballen — a deep-fried spherical Dutch treat to be served among the hors d’oeuvres when the Chesterville Legion doors open at 5:30 p.m. on April 14.

Dinner begins an hour later, with roast pork, chicken, potatoes, gravy, veggies, red cabbage, coleslaw, desserts and pie served up by volunteers from Christ Church United.

Whether their shoes be leather or wooden — aka klompen in Dutch — partygoers can take their fancy footwork to the dance floor where DJ Jamie Shadbolt cues up the tunes, 8 p.m. through midnight.

Established to show appreciation and acknowledge the positive impact of this area’s Dutch-Canadian community — largely arriving after the Second World War — the dinner is sponsored by the Rotary Club of Chesterville. “Without them [the Dutch immigrant families] we wouldn’t be functioning here in the United Counties,” says Ruth Gilroy, spearhead of the event since it started. It was during Gilroy’s term as Club president that she proposed the special evening, back in 2005, as a way of holding a locally significant occasion coinciding with Rotary International’s 100th anniversary.

“Tickets are selling well” for the 2018 edition, she says.

Funds raised go to Ryan’s Well Foundation.

The Legion Hall will be decked out in Dutch colours and heraldry while a slide show of the Netherlands will play on a big screen for the anticipated crowd of 125 to 150 people.

Tickets are $30 apiece. They’re available by contacting organizers like Vince Zandbelt (613-913-9670), Ruth Gilroy (613-448-2130) or Dini VanDelst-Peters (613-448-3175).

 

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