I recently had the honour of attending a luncheon at the Famous People Players Dine and Dream Theatre to remember Jim Flaherty. (1949-2014)
Famous People Players (FPP) is the creation of Diane Dupuy, a recipient of the Order of Canada, first Canadian to receive the Library of Congress Award, Queen's Jubilee Medal of Honour, book author and the list goes on and on. FPP is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year and has seen many developmentally challenged students take part over the years.
Each event takes place at the Dine and Dream Theatre and all students learn to cook in the kitchen, serve the patrons and act on the stage. A note about the Newman's Own Kitchen...sponsored by Paul Newman himself.
The FPP group has travelled the world and been featured on the Rick Mercer Report. (link from the website www.famouspeopleplayers.com)
The Dine and Dream experience commenced with appetizers from Fina Scroppo, author of the new cookbook The Healthy Italian. We were then served a beet salad with frisee and a main course of roasted chicken and vegetables. Following dinner we went into the theatre in the next room for the performance and returned to apple pie with tea and coffee. Celebrity chef Christopher Woods gives his time to develop and create a menu which the team of players can help cook and serve.
Laureen Harper, Canada's First Lady (Prime Minister Harper's wife) was a special guest to honour Jim Flaherty seen with Diane Dupuy. (on the right holding her notes) Dupuy said that Flaherty supported FPP and was instrumental in getting the theatre financial help for their new location from the government during his term as federal finance minister.
Sadly Mr. Flaherty passed away in April this year, a month after resigning from his position. His wife, Christine Elliott was present to receive a medal in his honour.
On the left, one of well known puppets and the right is taken during the performance. The players whirl around dressed in black, use colourful props and white gloves under special lighting effects.
Hubby and I attended the event with my good friend Ruth who turned 94 this summer and has been a patron of the FPP for years.
This was the second occasion for me to attend a Dine and Dream event and I was as inspired by the students this time as I was the first. The list of famous names that contribute money for the program to run, along with Diane Dupuy's passion make FPP the success it is.
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