After a year's absence, Bruno Cherry Sunday will be back this year. A group of community volunteers led by Debbie Kramer and Linda Batza have begun the organization of the beloved community festival slated for August 11th, 2019.
For over a decade, the community of Bruno had been the site of a celebration of all things cherry. The Bruno Cherry Festival, later Bruno Cherry Sunday, stemmed from the orchard of prairie variants of cherries grown at the St. Therese Institue. For years, community volunteers worked with St. Therese to plan and host a variety of activities. Local and provincial talent was always a staple along with a range of unique products such as cherry sausages and cherry infused craft beers.
Last year, Federal legislation which denied some organizations' funding for summer students stood in the way. Because of the Cherry Sunday's affiliation with St. Therese, the festival was reliant on the support of a summer student provided through Canada Summer Jobs program. Last year, a Federal mandate to provide an attestation that the organization would respect the Charter of Rights and Freedoms including women's reproductive rights resulted in a circumstance where the summer student support was not available.
This year, the Cherry Sunday committee and workers are entirely volunteers. In this way, the committee determined to forego that Canada Summer Jobs program. Program Co-Chair Debbie Kramer explains the changes, "We've had really good support from the community. We were sad to see the event not take place last year. So we had a community meeting in November of 2018 and had community members come out with some good ideas. Linda Batza and I decided to spearhead it with help from people that had been on the committee before."
Armed with a squad of volunteers, Kramer outlines the main changes from previous years, "What's changed this year is that we are through volunteers. St. Therese did not have a summer student available for the event last year, so this year as a volunteer group, we decided to start much earlier and do it with volunteers and it's working quite well."
Kramer points out that while the event is hosted on the St. Therese grounds, St. Therese Institute is not an organizer or sponsor of this year's event.
Bruno Cherry Sunday is in the planning stages. Kramer outlines some of the potential events, "We are considering local talent and seeking out members of our community that would want to participate. We are also looking into the possibility of having a local winery come in for a wine tasting. We are very happy with the support we are getting from the community and surrounding area, so we're going ahead."
As planning proceeds, more details will be available on the Bruno Cherry Sunday FaceBook page and on DiscoverHumboldt.com.