Tag Archives: Amy Robertson

Behind the Scenes: The 60 heroes of Lovefest

Behind Lovefest’s ongoing success, and the success of so many festivals and community events around the province, is a dedicated corps of volunteers. 

According to Amy Robertson, who oversaw this part of the festival, “We had about 60 volunteers this year. They were doing everything from making sure that  parking is safe out on the road and that the blue bus has a good place to park. Volunteers sell tickets, help the vendors and they’re setting up. They do a lot of decoration for this event, help promote it, sell T- shirts, and just ensure that everybody has a good, safe time.” 

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Better than ever: Lovefest 2023

Lovefest will be returning to Cortes Island on August 12. 

“Lovefest just has its own momentum. It exists because the community wants it. There’s nothing political about it. We get to enjoy some good music, have fun together and just be with each other as a community,” explained Rex Weyler, one of the key organizers. 

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Kate Maddigan, CCEDA’s new Economic Development Officer

The Cortes Community Economic Development Association (CCEDA) recently hired Kate Maddigan as its new Economic Development Officer (EDO). 

Colin Funk, the President of CCEDA, explained, “I have known Kate pretty much the entire time I’ve been on Cortes, I think I’m coming up to my 10th summer here. I’ve been on a few boards with her when I was active with Friends of Cortes Island (FOCI). We live pretty close together in the south end of the island. So like many, we bump into each other at the store or on the trails and such.”

Cortes Currents asked Maddigan about some of the work she has done in the community.

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The Old Schoolhouse Art Gallery’s 2023 Exhibition Line-up

The Old Schoolhouse Art Gallery is looking forward to what may be their best season in years. 

“There’s a post COVID enthusiasm which was first evidenced by the submissions that we had that have resulted in  seven shows. There’s no hesitation about Covid rules, or what we should or shouldn’t do.  We’ve been a nonprofit for a year and a bit, and the new manager has had a year behind her.  Things feel more settled, and more focused on the magic of the shows than the behind the scenes business that the boards have to handle in any organization in a big time of change,” explained Oriane Lee Johnston (OLJ). 

“One thing that Islanders can look forward to is a full season, starting from the 9th of June.”  

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More Than Just A Store: Cortes Natural Food Co-op

“One of our mandates is to create good employment for Islanders who are here full-time year round. And for our youth returning in the summer as well. It’s a great place for people who move to the island to start out and get to know the culture of the island by working with us.” — Mary Lavelle

The Cortes Natural Food Co-op is one of the top five or six employers on the island, an attraction for tourists and visitors, and the go-to grocery store for many year-round residents. Active members enjoy several benefits, but membership is not required to shop there — so the store serves many times more people every year than its approximately 360 active members.

Employing 20 people even in the off-season, and with over $2 million in sales each year, the Co-op is a significant island business. But it also makes a conscious effort to be a good neighbour. As General Manager Mary Lavelle put it during our interview, “Staff, board, management — we’re always considering the community. That is one of the factors that we always consider in our decision making: our community. And I think that’s part of what makes us so special.”

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