photo credit Karen Parks

Dressed to the nines, 175 ‘wedding guests’ who filled the pews at St. John’s United Church in Kemptville, Ontario on September 23, 2018 shared an afternoon of memories, laughter and even a few tears at the Kemptville District Hospital Auxiliary (KDHA)’s sold-out event, “Celebrating Decades of Bridal Gowns and Engaging in High Tea”.

The event, coordinated by visionary KDHA volunteer Linda Carnegie, featured models dressed in gowns worn by Kemptville and area brides from the 1920s to the present day, escorted down the aisle by members of the North Grenville Fire Department.

As the models traversed the aisle, the afternoon’s emcees, Diana Fisher and Jenny Thibert, described the bridal fashions, hairstyles, makeup, head-wear and floral designs of the decade. Moreover, they shared stories and photos from each bride’s special day. It was heartwarming to see that some of the models were the owners of the gowns, reliving their wedding days.

Following the fashion show, guests were treated to a high tea complete with fancy sandwiches and desserts, and a number of unique items were raffled and auctioned off, including a member of the North Grenville Fire Department!

Attendees had been encouraged to dress up in wedding finery of their own, and each guest was given a unique ‘fascinator’ head-piece that was created in advance by a group of volunteers from the local RBC.

As a fundraiser, the event was a huge success, raising approximately $6,000, which will be used for the direct benefit of patients at Kemptville District Hospital. As a walk down memory lane, the event was an even bigger success!

photo credit Morgan Nordskog

Organizer Linda Carnegie expressed the KDHA’s gratitude for the community’s commitment to the event: “Recognizing the multitude of demands on everyone’s support dollars, the KDHA thanks you for choosing to give back to our community and improve the hospital, which we are so proud of and so fortunate to have close to home.”

The KDHA would like to thank everybody who purchased tickets, all the brides who were willing to share their gowns and their stories, St. John’s United Church, soloist Debbie Banks and accompanist Larry Wesley, the emcees, the North Grenville Fire Department (described by one attendee as “the icing on the cake”), and the following sponsors and donors: Trudy Arnaud, Body and Sole, Brewed Awakenings, Brigadoon Restaurant, Castle View Fine Dining, Cogeco, Cowie Catering, eQuinelle, Raymond Finley, Geronimo Coffee House, Marguerite Gooch, Good Night Bed Company, Grahame’s Bakery, Sarah Hammond, Home & Beyond, House of Flowers, Jac’s Boutique, Juice FM, Kemptville Bowling, LDs Creations, Anita Maloney (Royal LePage), Moore’s Business Forms, Mrs. Whates’ Sewing, Nail & Spa, Morgan Nordskog, North Grenville Times, Pioneer Nursery, Pursuit of Happiness, RBC, Richardson Hair Design, Rideau Auctions, Rideau Glen Golf Course, Saltastic, Scentsy, Smolkins Men’s Wear, South Branch Bistro, Spa Jada, Jolene Stover, Sugold Jewellers, Sunset Nursery, SWTI, The Flower Shop, Thirty One, and Willow & Rose.

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