RVA Hoping For Return Of Annual Events In Vaillage
By Manotick Messenger Staff
The Richmond Village Association has elected its 2022 board of directors, and expressed hopes for many of its cancelled and modified activities can return to normal as the province and city continue to lessen COVID-19 restrictions.
The RVA, which gives the community a voice at the city’s political table for things like the masterplan and the transportation plan, also looks after many activities in the community. Ryan Pinet, who returns as the RVA President, said that because of the cancellation of numerous events, the association is currently in a financial surplus situation.
“Because we haven’t been able to do family fun days, and we weren’t able to run the grocery bus that we usually ran, and because our programming has all been run virtually, our expenses were quite low this year,” Pinet said.
Among the programs and events the RVA the oversees include the spring clean-up, the village garage sale, Richmond Family Day, the annual Santa Claus Parade, the walking club, the annual student award, the richmondvillage.ca website and community events calendar, and the Richmond Village Directory.
Pinet also explained how the board spent significant time reviewing and updating their strategic plan. The ongoing project, which will be completed in 2022, identifies five priorities: community events; community engagement; raising the profile of the RVA; supporting the community, youth and seniors; and advocacy of village needs and interest.
While Pinet returns as the RVA President, he will have seven directors on the board. They include returnees Glenn Fisher, Jordan Newman, Roland Rotter, Sylvain Sauve, Judy Wagdin and Mark Heckman. Kristine Quarrington also joins the board for her first term.
For the second straight year, the RVA worked with the Richmond Agricultural Society to hold a stationary Santa Claus Parade at the Richmond Fairgrounds. Several hundred cars drove through the parade, which lasted for well over two hours.
“One of our key components is to try to bring the community together,” Pinet said. “We were able to run the drive through parade this year. The feedback we got was great – it was wonderful. We had a couple dozen floats, we had hundreds of cars, and everybody really enjoyed it. It was great to do that, but we are really looking forward to holding more events in the future and getting back to a more normal operation in that sense for 2022.”
Pinet said that with the return of more events, there will be a need for more volunteers in the community. He said that, by definition, all residents and businesses in the Village of Richmond are automically members of the RVA. There are no membership dues, as there are in many other community associations. Because of that, the RVA relies heavily on volunteers to organize and run events like the Santa Claus Parade. Those volunteers looking for a deeper level of involvement are needed for the RVA’s programming.
Another program expected to return in 2022 is the Richmond Youth Centre, which is operated at the Richmond Memorial Community Centre.
“The Richmond Youth Centre is a program that is managed and funded by the Richmond Village Association,” Pinet said. “We have paid facilitators that are organizing events for youth in the community. That was one program that was very difficult to manage during COVID. The idea is to get the youth together in a safe but engaging space where they can get together and have a good time. We tried to do a lot of it on Zoom sessions but that really limited the ability of what we could do.”
For more information or if you to become as a volunteer, visit richmondvillage.ca.