Irish Heritage Day of Saint-Colomban

On Saturday, August 29th 2015, Saint-Colomban celebrated their 1st “Irish Heritage Day of Saint-Colomban” – This full day of activities was in honor of the Irish roots of Saint-Colomban. Visit our new Photo Gallery for photos of the event. More details about this special event are availabe on our Discussion Forum or the event Facebook page.

MEMORIES from FERGUS KEYES Ernie & Mary (Mamie) McAndrew’s place.

We also visited the Ernie & Mary (Mamie) McAndrew’s farm. When I was older, once or twice, I took the Provincial bus and went to visit them for a few days. The bus would stop around Bonnibrooke Golf Course and I would walk the rest of the way.

I also bought some land, about an acre, from Ernie back in the late sixties for about $1000.00 . I still own it and pay taxes to St. Columban. The taxes were originally about
$ 25.00 a year - but now are in the hundreds of dollars ! I know approximately where the land is - but with all the big development in the old pasture area, I doubt that I could actually find it without a land surveyor…

I remember helping Ernie bring in some hay one time with his horses and wagon. I was on the top of the wagon and Ernie was throwing up the hay. Suddenly the horses decided, on their own, to go back to the barn and took off. I wasn’t strong enough to stop them – maybe I was 12 or 14 at the time. Luckily they stopped by themselves when they got to the door. It was a helluva a ride and I don’t think that Ernie was impressed !

Another time I remember being there in the Winter – It was so quiet. My brother Bryan and I found something to slide down the driveway beside the farm house, and spent the whole day outside – it was great.

And once we trying to raise some money in Montreal for some event, and bought 100 Christmas Trees from Ernie. Of course, in the end I had to go with him to choose them & cut them down. Another really fun time with him.

And when he was well into his seventies, he had me help him dig some trenches. I was in pretty good shape, but did I ever have a hard time keeping up with him ….

We also rented Ernie’s small Grey cottage down the road, once or twice, for a few weeks in the summer.

And the mention of Neil Grimes and his music. About 1958 – 60, my parents rented the “Old Talbot Place” for the summer and we spent our time there. One night, they had a big party that I think everyone in St. Columban attended. Neil played music, and everyone was singing and dancing. I remember Harriet Grimes; of course Ernie & Mamie; some of the Phelans, Johnny & Daisy Funchion; and a whole bunch of other people. Again, I was young, about 10 – 12 years old, but that night was the first time I had ever seen the Northern Lights – a memory that I have never forgot – It was a perfect summer night and lots of fun !