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Carstairs Heritage Centre conducting unique fundraiser

Traditional Pioneer Supper and Dance fundraiser cancelled due to pandemic
MVT Carstairs pie auction
Guests take part in the 33rd annual Pioneer Supper, Pie Auction and Valentine's Dance at the Carstairs Community Hall on Feb. 14, 2020. The event has been cancelled this year in favour of a unique fundraising venture. File photo/MVP Staff

CARSTAIRS — In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Carstairs Heritage Centre's annual Pioneer Supper and Dance fundraiser for Valentine’s Day has been cancelled.

However, organizers have instead launched a unique fundraiser in place of the popular yearly event, says Ruth Roedler, president of the Carstairs and District Historical Society, which owns and operates the centre.

“We are trying a new approach, hosting a non-dinner and non-dance fundraiser,” said Roedler. “A person can make a tax deductible donation to the centre and receive nothing. 

“They do not have to leave the comfort of home and can spend the evening doing what they wish to do.”

The annual supper and dance typically brings in between $4,000 to $9,000 for the centre, with the money used for operations, display maintenance and other expenses, she said.

Since the non-dinner, non-dance event is the first of its kind, Roedler says organizers aren’t sure how much money will be raised.

“We honestly have no idea how much we are going to bring in,” she said.

The Pioneer Supper and Dance fundraiser typically included a pie auction. Unfortunately, that won’t be part of this year’s event, she said. 

“We looked into doing that virtually but it just didn’t work out,” she said.

Anyone interested in making a donation can call the centre at 403-337-3710 for details. Donations can be made in person or online, she said.

Meanwhile, Roedler says plans are in the works to host the annual regional school science fair virtually on April 10.

A long-time organizer of the regional fair, Roedler says details of the plan are being worked out and more information should be made public soon.

“We’ve got to do something for the kids,” she said. “We’ve never done this before and we are going to try it. The National Science Fair is also going virtual this year.”

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