German Pioneers Day Celebrations now in two Cities
Whoever said that a good thing would take a while was correct. The German Pioneers Day was celebrated for the first time in November of 2000, thanks to the diligent efforts of Wayne Wettlaufer and a group of Kitchener community volunteers, who would not give up until this much deserved recognition was pushed through at Queen’s Park. Ever since then this annual event has taken on bigger and better challenges to make German Pioneers Day better known.
Since the first celebration there have always been special ceremonies honouring the contributions of German Pioneers in any given field. This year The Kitchener-Waterloo Record was hailed as an early German Canadian Publications. The long history of how the paper was founded and how it changed hands and developed into what it is today makes for most interesting reading.
At hand were all the local politicians who share in the glory of the past and love to celebrate their diverse culture in public view. Our picture gallery, especially on the web will tell the story. (www.echoworld.com) Chairman Gerhard Gribenow and the directors of the Pioneers Day Committee had again planned and executed with the help of Helga Kessel a perfect event. After the introductions of all the many important public figures and special guests, after the readings of messages from Ontario’s Prime Minister and addresses by the various consular representatives the real purpose of the event was fulfilled. We heard from keynote speaker J. Fred Kuntz, who is the current Publisher of the Record and was also given a commutative plaque for his work at the paper.
Throughout the program there was of course entertainment. During the after noon already folks could listen to the wonderful Transylvania Brass Band, conducted by Jeremy Frim, while walking through City Hall to look at the exhibits, which reflect German Custom and History, including an interesting storyboard on The Record.
During the proceedings some children of the Concordia German School performed under the direction of Angelika Werner.
The German Language School Concordia
Flag Raising Ceremony at Queen's Park
Some of those exploits we heard about after a flag raising ceremony at Queen’s Park, Toronto, where Tony Ruprecht hat organized the first official recognition. The German Consul General Dr. Klaus Rupprecht was on hand, also Gerry Meinzer, Founding Father of the National German Canadian Congress, and other Community leaders.
After the ceremony Tony Ruprecht invited anyone who was interested into the house to sit in the gallery. There was time for lunch in the fabulous restaurant downstairs. Gerry Meinzer generously invited all present. After the session opened MPP Frank Klees and Tony Ruprecht both addressed the Speaker of the House on the subject of German Pioneers Day. It was a proud moment having those that came before us acknowledged in such a fashion. I felt that we live in a democracy and that we are indeed a part of it.
You can read the 2 speeches at another spot in the publication:
Send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
questions or comments about this web site.