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Pioneers to be celebrated at homecoming in Clifford

by Bonnie Whitehead

CLIFFORD - Chair Bill Smith welcomed 24 committee members and guest Dan Binkley to the 150th Community Anniversary and 2017 Clifford Homecoming meeting recently at Knox United Church in Clifford.

Organizer Cheryl Tobin provided details on the grist mill site celebration planned. A plaque will be arriving from the federal government which granted the committee funding for the celebration.

A plaque will also be unveiled from the Minto Cultural Roundtable Heritage Marker Committee. A mural of the grist mill, a project sponsored by the Clifford Revitalization Committee, will be on site and later moved to the corner of Elora Street North and Allan Street East.

Peter Buhrow and his team will be hosting an historical display on site with former owners and staff of the Clifford Feed Mill. Members of the Clifford and District Horticultural Society will have the area looking good.

Mary Jean Hartwig found another pioneer with a connection to Clifford. She brought along a framed picture of Alice Hoey Shaffer (1886-1964), the daughter of preacher William J. Hoey and his wife Ernestine who lived in Clifford. The family moved to Manitoba and later Alice moved to California, married and wrote poetry and a book Angel Timber, An Epic Poem of a Pioneer Woman that was published in 1946.

A line from the poem reads, “... And in the winter while her friends of childhood days were sledding down Neal’s hill and tumbling in the snow with shrill delight, and while her husband in a pulpit preached three miles away in Clifford, Teenie stayed alone at home and cared for her two girls.”

Hartwig also passed along thanks to Blair Wightman for the superior job in researching the veterans of Clifford, a welcome addition to the World War display.

Morgan Janssen discussed a list of entertainment that is confirmed for the weekend celebration.

Janssen has invited Clifford’s own Juanita Wilkins, harpists, musicians from the Saugeen Music School, Brett Uhrig’s band Big Wheels, the Vaudevillian Band, Blue Angel, Samantha Glasier, Lucas Rogerson, Kerosene Creek, Nicolas Mercurie, Lindoin Stone, Brothers from Other Mothers, Nothing Fancy, and a yet-to-be announced headline act.

Children will be involved with face painting, air brush tattoos, bean bag toss, fishing pond, bouncy castle, bingo, Dickie Bird, clown Val E. Joy, and a children’s author will read and sign autographs.

Officials say car enthusiasts will enjoy a historic car show, campers will feel right at home in the RV park and shoppers will browse the craft show, while some may choose to ride in a hot air balloon, take in the parade and enjoy the fireworks.

For updates visit or on Facebook or contact secretary Dianne Epworth at 519-327-8091.

The homecoming and 150th celebration is slated for Aug. 4 to 7.

February 17, 2017


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