AMHERST – As a way of preserving some of Amherst’s distinct history, the Amherst Lion’s Club hosted their annual Four Fathers Dinner fundraiser to raise money for the Cumberland County Museum. Along with the dinner, guests were able to browse through the silent auction items and enjoy some entertainment from the Four Fathers themselves.
“Last year, we celebrated our 30th year since we opened the museum and we typically use (the dinner) as our major fundraiser,” said Brian Trenholm, chair of the museum’s board. “We go get items to be bid on in an auction, whether it be live or silent. We call all our members, people in the community and we call political representatives and we try to get everybody here every year.”
Last year, the dinner hosted 140 guests. This year, Trenholm said he guessed there was about 115. Next year, he plans to have the numbers back up to 140.
Although the museum does receive some funding, the rest of their expenses come out of hosting fundraisers, such as the Four Father’s dinner.
“The museum gets roughly a third of the money that it takes to operate from the Canadian Museum Assistance Plan and we get probably another 20 (per cent) in private donations,” he said. “There’s lots of money that we have to earn in running events. That’s not likely to change, it’s likely to get tougher.”
Conservative Member of Parliament for Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, Scott Armstrong, could not pass up the opportunity to show his support for the cause.
“I have another side interest,” he said. “My background is in history, I was a history teacher and I have a PhD with a background in history. I’m also very proud when I go to Ottawa to state that I have five Founding Fathers of Confederation in my riding; four here in Amherst and one in Truro, as well as a former Prime Minister.”
Armstrong said supporting causes like the Cumberland County Museum is something important that all politicians should do. Not only does Armstrong have a keen interest in history, but he also has some roots in it as well.
“I also have a background in it. Sir John A. MacDonald was my great, great, great, great, great uncle,” he said. “So I can trace a lot of my roots back to the Conservative Party and having Sir Charles Tupper traced back to this riding is also a source of pride for me.”