The Collingwood area has been noted for it’s community spirit on more than one occasion. I recall when we hosted the Special Olympics World Winter Games in 1997, Eunice Kennedy Shriver said that she had never before witnessed a small community such as ours bring forth so many volunteers; so many that some had to be turned away. Whether it is volunteering for an organization, raising funds for the hospital, hosting special events such as Titz n Glitz or working with service clubs in town, the citizens of Collingwood have got spirit!
Evidence of that remarkable quality is very evident at the moment while the townsfolk band together to support local musician, Drew Wright, in his bid to become the next Canadian Idol. It is impossible to go anywhere in town today and not see this community spirit and outpouring of support at every twist and turn. The radio, the newspapers, signs on most businesses, banners, car magnets, cookies, flyers, posters in windows, T-shirts… Drew is everywhere!
A local businessperson named John Gabriele is behind much of the co-ordination of events. Those of us that know John, know that he is not doing this for personal gain. John embodies community spirit whether it be Elvis or Drew. He understands that when the community succeeds, he succeeds. We all do. He also knows that Drew is a gentle, humble and deserving young man with a talent that sends shivers up my spine.
Last week-end, an impromptu concert was put together in a mere 37 hours. Drew came home to thank the locals for their support and against all prospects, it is estimated that some 5,000 people showed up! If you missed the event, you have to hear Drew sing Hallelujah in this You Tube video.
Drew will sing in the Top 10 on Monday night. When it’s over, dial. Dial. Dial again. Let’s show the world that one little town can give wings to dreams.