Abundant Community McCauley

Block Party Memories

Neighbourhood block parties are an opportunity for people to meet and get to know each other. They are also to have fun and increase the sense of belonging to a community, which in turn encourages neighbours to look after each other.

I asked a few residents to share their experience with a block party. Thanks to Joanne McNeal for sharing this story:

“Our Block Party was held in the back alley intersecting 94 Street between 109A and 110 Avenues, in August of 2014. I had the idea to invite people to come together on a Sunday afternoon for a ‘Sundae Sunday.’ Ice cream was provided and residents on three avenues between 92 and 97 Streets were invited to bring a topping, a bowl, a spoon, and a folding chair. We had shade over the ice cream with the toppings, which included nuts, fruits, berries, chocolate, caramel, and marshmallows, on a separate table. At first, people did not know what to expect, so I had to keep explaining the idea. We had set up small picnic tables along the alleys, and eventually other people brought chalk to make a hopscotch game, and the kids also jumped rope. The adults sat and visited and moved around. People went back for second and even third helpings. We got some cones for the kids, and everyone helped themselves. Many cultures were represented: Italian, Chinese, and Eastern European, besides Canadian-born residents.

One lady didn’t understand the concept and thought we were giving away free ice cream, so she came with a huge salad bowl. I explained that it was an opportunity to visit and get to know neighbours, and that she needed a small bowl so she could eat ice cream while visiting. She went home and got a small bowl, a spoon, and a chair. She sat down and enjoyed visiting for the next two hours. Afterwards, she said she enjoyed visiting with neighbours she had never met before – even though she had lived here for 40 years! How wonderful is that? Everyone had fun visiting. It was a good way to get to know our neighbours – and tasty too!”

You too can host a party, however large or small. Your event can be bolstered by the Block Party Kit that the McCauley Community League has put together for this exact purpose. As well, the City of Edmonton has Small Sparks grants of $250 that can be applied for. If you want some assistance, please email me at abundantcommunitymccauley@gmail.com. You will create memories!

More in this issue

Neighbourhood Views

  • Helping at Homeless Connect – Around 1200 people were served at Homeless Connect on April 29 at the Shaw Conference Centre. There were 69 service providers and over 300 volunteers. Homeless Connect is a partnership between Edmonton Economic Development, Homeward Trust Edmonton and the Shaw Conference Centre. Noor Al-Henedy

  • Lovely Lavender – Some lavender for sale outside of Zocalo. Paula E. Kirman

  • Teresa Spinelli Receives Honourary Degree from NAIT – Teresa Spinelli (pictured here with her son Massimo) received an honourary Bachelor of Business Administration from NAIT on May 4, when she also gave the convocation speech. Mike Newberry

  • Here Comes the Train Again – The LRT moving along the tracks between McCauley and Boyle Street. Paula E. Kirman

  • Bent Arrow Round Dance – The Bent Arrow Traditional Healing Society’s Annual Round Dance took place on April 21 at the Commonwealth Rec Centre. Janis Irwin

  • Noi Thai Restaurant Opens in McCauley – Noi Thai Restaurant has opened up in the former location of Viphalay at 10724 95 Street. Viphalay owner and McCauley Community League board member Lily Mounma sold this location to her uncle. Look for a review in an upcoming issue of the paper. Paula E. Kirman

Around the Neighbourhood

Volunteer With Us!

We are always looking for new writers and photographers, as well as ideas for future stories. We also regularly need block carriers to help with the delivery and distribution of the paper. Email Paula with your submissions, feedback, ideas, and availability. We also ask that contributors read our Editorial Guidelines and that all volunteers read and agree to our Code of Conduct.

Next Issue . . .

Our next issue is September. Articles and photos concerning community news, events, and opinions are welcome. We also encourage submissions of poetry, and cartoons (in JPG or PDF format). Deadline: August 12. Send submissions to: editor@bmcnews.org. Articles should be 400 words or less and accompanied by photographs (JPG, in high resolution) when possible.