Langley’s International Festival Society’s fourth annual multicultural gala dinner and awards ceremony, held on Saturday, Feb. 1, at the Coast Hotel and Convention Centre was a big success both in attendance and nominations.
Township of Langley Mayor Jack Froese, Councillors Grant Ward, Kim Richter, Charlie Fox, Steve Ferguson, Bev Dornan, and City of Langley Mayor Ted Schaffer attended the celebration of community diversity.
The society received several nominations for the four categories — Youth, Senior, Business/Employee, and Education.
The awards are given to the individuals and the organizations for their outstanding work and contribution in promoting equality and diversity in the community.
The Youth award was given to Cole Armour, a 15-year-old Canadian recording artist and songwriter, for his anti-bullying campaigns, child welfare and animal protection and safety activities.
Bonnie Hartup, a retired teacher, was awarded in the ‘Senior’ category for bringing the Brookswood Seniors Centre back to life, and organizing many events including Food for Friends, dancing dogs, square dancing, line dancing, zumba, crib, chess, crafts, and quilting groups, and volunteer work at the Langley Centennial Museum.
Peter Luongo, who worked as a teacher/principal with Langley School District for 34 years won the ‘Education’ award for his excellent work in the field, and for founding both the Langley Ukulele Ensemble, and the annual Langley Has Talent competition.
Retired airport manager George Miller won the award in the ‘Business’ category for his outstanding work in resurrecting the Langley Township-owned airport, and turning it into a top-flight operation which generates $69 million annually for the community.
The society presented a slide show highlighting the Langley’s International Festival celebrations that attracted everyone’s attention. Entertainment included the Mortimers band and a performance by Armour.
Rob Hopkins, master of the ceremony, made the evening very exciting.
The gala dinner was sponsored by TD Canada Trust.
On behalf of the society, Shar Dubas, and the society president Bob Barrett congratulated the winners, and thanked the guests, sponsors and volunteers for making the event a success.