Since 1995, retired teachers in the Valley have gathered the first morning of the fall term to enjoy a No Bell Breakfast. Pearl Orr was inspired to begin the event having seen fellow retired high school teachers John Fortner and David Winger sit drinking coffee in the school parking lot while their colleagues returned to class. Theresa Prince told The Current that she and co-organizers Bev Burchat, Carmel Rumleskie, Greta Bloskie and Bev Bozak have planned the annual No Bell at the Ash Grove Inn since 2010, expanding the invitation to include all retired school board personnel — janitors, secretaries, school bus-drivers, noon-hour supervisors, educational assistants, support staff, teachers and principals. Retirees are also encouraged to bring along their spouse or friend. Attendees at No Bell enjoy a guest speaker or musical entertainment. The event raises funds for a worthy cause to help needy children and families in Renfrew County. Last year over $500 went to Child Poverty Action Network.
The 2019 No Bell on September 3 featured speaker Greg McLeod, Chief Operating Officer at St. Francis Memorial Hospital, and this year’s cause is the Valley Manor Redevelopment.
Carmel Rumleskie (pictured at top) acted as emcee and in her opening address welcomed this fall’s new retirees. She gave notice that after ten years the present organizers of the No Bell are happy to pass the torch to a new group. She thanked McLeod for coming to speak, the No Bell committee for their work, all attendees and the individuals who had donated raffle prizes for their generosity.
Bev Bozak (left) and Bev Burchat at the raffle table with Pam McCallum
Carman Palubiski (left) and Theresa Prince greeted No Bell attendees
McLeod told The Current, “I was proud to be invited to speak with the No Bell group. Their interest in the hospital, its recent changes and future projects is commendable. They are a very knowledgeable group: Their understanding of local health care and the provincial landscape is admirable. We appreciate their interest and advocacy on behalf of local healthcare.”
Eleanor Stanutz, Greg McLeod, Kristin Marchand, Lorraine Finn chat before breakfast