Community spirit -- it’s always been there in Lawrencetown. But now residents of the tiny Annapolis County village are finding out that the spirit extends beyond their borders, across Nova Scotia, and quite literally from coast to coast and around the world.
We’re talking about CBC Kraft Hockeyville, of course. Lawrencetown, a wild card entry and the smallest of 12 communities across Canada, has made it to the Top 5 and will find out April 3 if they will claim the national title.
Anyone who has checked out the Lawrencetown for Hockeyville 2010 Facebook group will see the hundreds of messages of congratulations and support from every corner of the globe as social networking proves that ‘community’ isn’t something with town limits.
Of course Lawrencetown is unique, not just in its community volunteer-built and maintained rink, but in its boundaries. It’s a perfect circle with spirit radiating out in all directions, sweeping up everyone in its path. Organizers of the Hockeyville bid have been overwhelmed by the support received to date, and in fact are in awe of the kindness of strangers.
But if you stop and think about it, these selfless volunteers on behalf of children are only receiving back what they have been giving so tirelessly for many years. Perhaps the rewards of giving aren’t always so obvious, but when you help a child in any way, there is a reward. A reward in knowing you’ve helped a child stay healthy and active. A reward for helping shape team spirit and cooperation. A reward for building strength and character in young people. And a reward for creating leadership for the future.
Sure, the guaranteed $25,000 prize for making the Top 5 will help perpetuate the programs at the Lawrencetown Exhibition Youth Arena. And the $100,000 will go a long way towards upgrading or building a new rink. The real prize has been the outpouring of support, the validation of hard work in helping kids, and the guaranteed knowledge that regardless of being Hockeyville 2010 the Little Rink that Could is backed by many people who love it. It won’t die now. It’s become almost a living entity in the hearts and minds of many thousands of people.
When Martha Roberts entered the Youth Arena in the national contest, she never dreamed of the great tide of enthusiasm and support for the underdog that would sweep across the country.
Well done Martha, and well done Lawrencetown.
It’s been quite a ride for Lawrencetown as voting winds down for CBC Kraft Hockeyville 2010, but the voting isn’t over for some readers who pick up their paper on Wednesday -- so pick up your phones, log on to your computer, or stop by the NSCC in Lawrencetown or Middleton.