© Dave Mathieson - Amherst Daily News
Jay Onrait (left) and Dan O'Toole sing Oh Canada with the crowd last night in Pugwash
PUGWASH – The singing of Oh Canada by thousands of people in Eaton Park in Pugwash while the sun set on the horizon is an ending to TSN’s SportsCentre that won’t soon be forgotten.
“It went off without a hitch,” said Alex Parker, as people filed out from the park after the hour-long show wrapped up. “The amount of people who came out to support Pugwash blew me away. It was amazing to see how it all came together.”
Parker sent the letter to TSN that helped Pugwash win the right to host SportsCentre as part of the 10-in10 Kraft Celebration Tour.
Jay Onrait and Dan O’Toole hosted last night’s show.
Onrait and O’Toole stayed in Fox Harb’r while in Pugwash, and before stepping on the stage Onrait said, “We arrived at Fox Harb’r and it’s unbelievable.
“The resort is just spectacular. It’s the nicest place we’ve ever stayed on the tour for sure.
We showed up today and it’s just a perfect location here on the Northumberland Strait,” he added. “It’s gorgeous and the folks are excited to have us here. We like to come to smaller towns.”
O’Toole was impressed as well.
While looking out the window of their tour bus O’Toole said, “My impression of Pugwash is when I look out to my right is that I’m looking at a post card of Canada,” said O’Toole. “You realize on the Kraft tour what a beautiful country we live in.
Parker spent a lot of time with Onrait and O’Toole over the last two days.
“They’re real down to earth people and they’re really funny,” said Parker. “They were easy to relate to.”
Onrait called Parker “Pugwash’s future mayor,” during last night’s show and everybody cheered.
“Everybody’s been great,” said Parker. “They’re coming up to me and shaking my hand. I’ve shaken more hands at this event than I have my entire life.
“It blows me away,” he added. “One person can make a difference, and I was just lucky to be that one person I guess.”
Parker was also presented with a $25,000 cheque from Kraft and TSN last night.
The money is being used to renovate the Pugwash ball field.
“We have the new fence installed,” said Parker. “MacDonald Fencing helped us out a huge amount by donating some labour and donating the gates and the doors for the fence.
“We’re going completely strip the infield of the gravel that’s there and replace it with a mud infield,” he added. And we purchased a lawn tractor to take care of the mowing because there’s a lot of grass there to be mowed by a push mower.
Parker said thank you to the hundreds of thousands of people who voted to bring TSN to Pugwash and he also thanked Tamara Tuttle and Andy Jameson.
“I couldn’t have done any of this without them,” he said. “They were instrumental in helping me organize everything.
“A huge thank you to everybody. This is only the beginning for Pugwash,” he added.
More pictures of the event can be seen on the slideshow section at www.cumberlandnewnow.com