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Biennial Netherlands Bazaar attracts people from greater distances each time

Organizers netted record $120.000 in one day

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

THORNHILL, Ontario - The recent biennial Dutch market day of the Committee Netherlands Bazaar again has broken records. The one-day event netted organizers over $120,000 for their benevolence program. All day, the Thornhill community centre attracted a steady stream of visitors looking for fellowship and games, Dutch food (from croquettes to solid ‘boerenkool met rookworst’ meals), white elephants, handicrafts and other bargains. Numerous donors could watch the crowd snap up merchandise in an atmosphere similar to that at many markets in the old country.

Organizer Gé Spaans attributed the success of the event to the many volunteers and the support of numerous businesses and groups as well as individuals who generously contributed merchandise, goods, crafts and their time. While some brought donations when advance publicity started, others literally work for the Bazaar on an ongoing basis.

Spaans who has spearheaded the Committee for years, was quite ecstatic about the publicity the biennial event received, also outside the Dutch community media. Various radio stations and newspapers carried announcements of the event, including one New York State-based broadcaster. The coverage is very crucial she said, especially because it is a one-day event. Every year, the crowd seems to travel greater distances to attend the bazaar, noted Spaans.

Prizes, prizes, prizes

At the Bazaar, also this time, numerous door prizes were raffled. Among these were a $1,500 term deposit by Duca Financial Services (winner Mrs. Lammie Berk-hout), a KLM / Northwest round trip to Amsterdam (Jarmila Mol-Slama), a second round trip (Bill Smith), and a water colour painting by wellknown Dutch Can-adian artist Jake Mol (H. Visser). The list of Get-Away draws was headed by two one-person Martinair round trip tickets (Carla Reedyk and Jan van Mil).

Bazaar organizers since already have shifted their attention to the next project: preparing and distributing Christmas parcels. The Committee invites the Ontario Dutch Canadian community to submit names and addresses of people of Dutch descent deemed in need of help because of hard times. All applications are treated confidentially and can be send (before November 19) to Committee Netherlands Bazaar, 15 Pavilion St., Unionville, ON L3R 1N8. Interested parties also may call one of the following numbers: Gé Spaans, 905-477-1243, Lia De Groot, 905-878-1040 or Bets Speelman, 4126-742-1172. Spaans cautions that a questionnaire needs to be completed and signed to better assess the needs of each family entered for assistance. The group also is involved with a summer camp for disadvantaged children of Dutch-descent.