Amherstburg Chamber of Commerce hosts “Mardi Gras”


By Ron Giofu


A touch of New Orleans returned to Bob-Lo Island Saturday night thanks to the Amherstburg Chamber of Commerce (ACOC).

The ACOC presented its fourth annual Mardi Gras celebration Saturday night. While the event had to adapt from being under the pavilion near the dance hall to being under large tents, that seemed to do little to dampen people’s spirits. Not even the few raindrops that fell could dampen anyone’s spirits.

“We had a little rain but what’s a Mardi Gras without rain?” joked ACOC general manager Lena Lazanja.Mardi Gras1 Mardi Gras2

Lazanja pointed out that 420 tickets were sold for the dinner portion of the event with tickets being marked down for those who wanted to show up afterword.

“We had a great turnout,” she said. “Everyone is very happy with the food. Overall, there have been no complaints and things have been good.”

Numerous local business and organizations stepped up with donations and volunteer hours, she noted. The House of Shalom Youth Centre will receive proceeds from the event and volunteers from there provided some of the help in presenting Mardi Gras. Lazanja added that they had a live auction with 16 auction prizes.

Windsor Family Credit Union (WFCU) was the main event and entertainment sponsor, added Lazanja.

“They stepped up to the plate,” she said, adding the ACOC is giving them a “big welcome” to Amherstburg.

WFCU manager of sales and service Mike Scherer, who will be based at the new branch when it opens in approximately three weeks, said sponsoring events is par for the course in the communities they serve.

“WFCU gets very involved with the communities we deal with,” he said. “We are new members of the Amherstburg Chamber of Commerce as well.”

House of Shalom activities co-ordinator Rebecca Deline said the members there enjoy volunteering at the event and enjoy getting involved with other organizations.

“They have more fun with this annual event than any other event we do throughout the year,” said Deline.

Roughly 40-50 volunteers helped out even though the programming at the House of Shalom is not currently running. Some volunteers worked 13 hours Saturday in getting the event ready.

“We’re always looking for different ways to fundraise,” said Deline.

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