Hoedown designed to bridge divide
By RENÉE FRANCOEUR
The organizer behind Red Deer’s first Community Hoedown wants to see less of a divide between today’s adolescents and seniors.
Sarah Fletcher began planning a barn dance-like event, set to kick for Oct. 26 at the Golden Circle, as a way to connect the two age groups.
“I’ve noticed it more and more: the older generations and younger ones don’t speak. I really see a wealth of information that both generations can share so I wanted to create an opportunity where that can be opened up,” said Fletcher, who works with health services at Bowden Institution.
The Community Hoedown is all volunteer based and is the result of Fletcher’s progress with Landmark’s self expression leadership program.
“It started off as a project with the program — they’d asked us to look into something we’re passionate about and that we’d like to do in our community — but it’s become so much more than that,” she said.
The event will see a group of seniors teaching youth how to make a homestyle supper for a large group of people, followed by an old-fashioned family country dance.
“It’s about communities giving back. I remember getting together with my grandparents and preparing for big events like weddings and it’s a lot of fun; you get to talk, joke, find out interesting things, all the while making this big dinner.”
Fletcher hopes the dinner prep will spark good conversations and pave the way for increased connections between seniors and youth.
So far, about 10 youth and seniors have signed up to help out. Fletcher hopes to have as many as 20 seniors and 20 teenagers working side by side in the kitchen to prepare the ham and scalloped potato dinner, followed up by an apple crisp dessert.
Tickets are $15 in advance and $17 at the door. Children 10 and under are free.
Tickets can be purchased at the Golden Circle or by contacting Fletcher at 403-352-5601.
The cooking gets underway at noon with doors opening at 5 p.m. and the feast being served at 5:30.
The Swing Kings with special guitarist Joe Gates start the dancing tunes at 6:30.