Village of Port Williams

Biggest Little Port in the World

The Village of Port Williams believes that volunteers are an integral and significant part of rural life in our Village. Our Volunteer Award Program was initiated in 1995 by the Village Commission in memory of the late Harold B. Legge who served the Village as a Commissioner so faithfully for more than sixteen years. In 2009 our Program became associated with the Provincial Volunteer Award Program which is sponsored by Recreation Nova Scotia.

Looking at the nominations is a wonderful example of how the volunteers in our community have made a difference, provided leadership and made incredible role models in our Village. Organizations and individuals are encouraged to make nominations. The form can be picked up at the Village. All of the Volunteers nominated will be formally recognized at the Village's Annual Meeting in June; however, only one of the Volunteers nominated will represent the Village at the Annual Provincial Awards Ceremony hosted by the Province of Nova Scotia.
Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Mark Grotjohn
Mark Grotjohn

Mark moved to the Village of Port Williams community with his family in 2020. With two children at Port Williams Elementary School, he began volunteering in the 2020-21 year. He immediately started working with students on a weekly basis to help with their academic growth.

He regularly volunteers for multiple school events, like Spring Fling, Santa Breakfast, and other events that require the support of volunteers. This year, he joined the School Advisory Council (SAC) as Secretary to serve in an advisory capacity to the school principal and the elementary school on a range of issues related to the school, such as school practices, fundraising, parent-school communication, school improvement, and student achievement and performance.

He also volunteers his time as a member of the Port Williams & District Lions Club and regularly donates blood and plasma to Canada Blood Services.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Tyson Rovers

Tyson Rovers

Tyson Rovers is an asset to the Village of Port Williams as both a business owner and a community volunteer. He has been actively involved in the Village for over 10 years.

During that time, Tyson has participated as a volunteer on two significant projects: the protection of the Farmham Marsh Body which is a 192-acre marsh located in the Village of Port Williams, and Working with the Tides Project which is upgrading vulnerable dykes in the province of Nova Scotia.

Tyson is also involved in the community by sharing his time, inspiring, and supporting youth in their after-school programs like soccer and basketball.

His love for trivia has made him known and appreciated by many organizations in Port Williams. The monthly event is a free will offering with all proceeds going to a different community group each month. To-date Tyson has raised over $35,000 helping organizations like: the Port Williams Elementary School Nutrition for Health Committee which funds the Breakfast and Lunch Programs; local sport teams; the Annapolis Valley Honor Choir; the Port Williams Lions Club Christmas Hampers; winter clothing for children in Kings County; Landmark Easts scholarship program to name a few.

Tyson is a community minded and respected resident of the Village of Port Williams.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Betty Jean Tupper

Port Williams Betty Jean Tupper
Congratulations to Betty Jean Tupper, chosen as this year's Representative Volunteer of the Year for Port Williams.

Betty-Jean has contributed a lifetime of encouragement and support for the youth in our community and the Annapolis Vallely. In a leadership role she has orchestrated and assisted with many local Community events. Her involvement with the Apple blossom Leadership Candidate selection Committee and Girl Guides Canada has contributed to building self confidence and life skills in young people.

Betty Jean has helped the Lions Club, organized children’s parades, member of the Port Williams Recreation Committee, EMS Committee, Safe Grad Committee, Parent Teacher, Sunday school teacher, Historical Society, leader with Girl Guides of Canada, Sparks and Brownie’s With an upbeat outlook, Betty-Jean is proud of her community and always ready to help when she can.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Liz Johnson

Liz Johnson 002
 This award is usually presented during the annual Provincial Volunteer Awards in April, but due to COVID-19 the ceremony was rescheduled to September as a virtual ceremony. The volunteer chosen is also honoured with H.B. Legge Volunteer of the Year award at the village's AGM held on November 18th.

Since the 1960 Liz has cheerfully given of herself to various organizations and groups in the Annapolis Valley. With her riding talents and enthusiasm, she started horse riding for a disabled group in the 1960 called the Willowbank Riders. Some of the many groups Liz has contributed her volunteer time would be as a President and Secretary of the Port Williams Women’s Institute; volunteering at the Port Williams School, member of the Hospital Auxiliary, Princess Committee member for the Apple Blossom Festival, tour guide for the Willowbank Farm, District Commissioner of the Annapolis Pony Club, member of the Loyal workers for the Port Williams Baptist Church, 4H leader and Brownie leader, to name a few. Liz loves her Port Williams Community and will always help out when asked.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Lewis Benedict
Lewis Benedict online
Congratulations to Lewis Benedict, chosen as this year's Representative Volunteer of the Year for Port Williams. This award is usually presented during the annual Provincial Volunteer Awards in April, but due to COVID-19 the ceremony has been rescheduled for Monday, September 28th. The volunteer chosen is also honoured with H.B. Legge Volunteer of the Year award at the village's AGM (usually held in June, but who knows if that date will be possible this year). But this is all too much in the future, so I am taking the opportunity now to honour this year's recipient. 

Lewis Benedict is a pillar of our community, not just a volunteer helping with today’s needs but someone who has looked toward to the future always thinking about, and being involved in, projects that would make Port Williams an even better place to live.  

Whether or not he is a member of the organization, Lewis is always there to help and support the work of village groups in small and large ways. For the Port Williams United Baptist Church he brought a cherry picker to help them decorate their giant spruce tree, created an advent wreath stand (in memory of his mother Greta, and his wife Debbie, who was also a very active community volunteer), most recently fashioned handrails for the steps leading to the platform and donated money for a set of reversible choir collars. The Port Williams and District Lions Club has experienced his support over the years with variety of their projects including their  Mock Jail, construction of Apple Blossom Festival floats and most recently the upgrading of the projection and sound systems in the Community Centre.  The fledgling History Committee, whose creation he encouraged, had barely held its first meeting when he established an area to house historical donations in the public works building.

Lewis’ thousands of hours of volunteer work on behalf of our recreation facilities is multifaceted, involving physical labour, the use of his equipment and serving on the committees that govern the facilities. He was instrumental in the development of the Port Williams Park (photo taken with Lia Hennigar and Laura Churchill Duke at the Park opening), rugby and soccer fields, skating pond and Launchers Athletics Field (a facility second to none in the province).

Lewis has been active in the Port Williams Volunteer Fire Department for 50 plus years, as a fire fighter, fire chief in the 1970s, and currently as a veteran member.
He has 30 plus years of service on the Port Williams Village Commission, and has been chair since 1996. Lewis has a passion for protecting our wellfields and dykelands. Initiatives during his chairmanship included the placement of crossing flags at crosswalks, the widening of the highway across the dyke to include a bike lane and the creation of the village war memorial for soldiers and war brides. He is an active member of the Association of Nova Scotia Villages and has served as Chair, fighting for the continued independence of villages.

Lewis was honoured by the Wolfville Rotary Club with the Paul Harris Fellow Award in 2015. This award, named after the founder of Rotary, recognizes a person who embodies the Club’s motto “Service Above Self”.  It is rare for Rotarians to present this award outside their organization and Lewis is the first non-Rotary Port Williams resident to be so honoured (photo with Rotarian Ron Buckley). He was also honoured that year by the Women’s Institutes with the Erland Lee Award. This national award is presented annually in each province to a gentleman who has been a strong supporter of WI. 

It is not just organizations that receive help from Lewis, but also individuals in need during times of power outages, emergency situations and other circumstances of hardship.

For all that he does for Port Williams and its residents, the Port Williams and District Lions Club nominated Lewis Benedict for the 2020 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award. This nomination was supported by the Board of Trustees of the Community Centre, the Port Williams Recreation Advisory Committee and the Port Williams Women's Institute.

Wayne Blenkhorn Volunteer

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Remembrance Day Observance Comittee 
chaired by Wayne Blenkhorn

Congratulations to the Remembrance Day Observance Comittee chaired by Wayne Blenkhorn that has been chosen as this year's Representative Volunteer. It was nominated by the Port Williams Community Centre Board of Trustees and the Port Williams Women’s Institute.  This nomination was supported by the Port Williams Recreation Advisory Committee. The Committee was honoured at the Provincial Volunteer Awards Ceremony in Halifax and received the Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year Award at the Village AGM in June.

The Remembrance Day Observance Committee chaired by Wayne Blenkhorn was chosen for the 2019 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award. The Observance Committee is made up of representatives from the organizations which take part in the event: the Village Commission, the United Baptist Church, St. John’s Anglican Church and the Women’s Institute.

Committee chair Wayne Blenkhorn has been the guiding force behind the Observance which has taken place on the Sunday before Remembrance Day since its inception in 2005. Attendance for the event has grown significantly over the past 13 years and now is usually over 100 people.

Wayne and the Committee have worked to provide a multifaceted event involving many individuals and organizations in the community. The Village Commission does the programme and provides financial support, the ministers of both of the Port Williams churches lead the ceremony, and members of the Fire Department have raised and lowered the flags. A recent and most appreciated musical addition has been the combined Port Williams/New Minas Elementary School choir. The committee has made a special effort to enlist the participation of youth each year, not just with the inclusion of the choir, but also in having them lay a wreath and pass out programmes.

The connections that Wayne has as a veteran (serving 34 years in the Canadian Armed Forces, including one tour in the Middle East as a Peacekeeper) have enabled the participation of the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 73, the Nova Scotia RCMP Pipes and Drums and the Atlantic Canadian Military History Association, whose ever-varying displays in the Community Centre after the ceremony are one of the highlights of the afternoon.

Through the work of Wayne and the committee, our Remembrance Day Observance had the participation of MP Scott Brison in 2012, and their special efforts for the 100th anniversary of the beginning and the end of WWI resulted in our ceremony being featured on ATV News in both 2014 and 2018. 2018 was also the 100th anniversary of the death of Private George Price, a resident of our village, who was the last Commonwealth soldier killed in the war. Wayne commissioned Memorial banners for all of the village soldiers who died in World War I and had them hung on the fence by the Community Centre. As well, he arranged for the participation of His Honour the Honourable Arthur L. LeBlanc, the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia who began the Observance with the inspection of his honour guard from the West Nova Scotia Regiment.

It is not just the Remembrance Observance ceremony that has grown over the years but also the Memorial Park, which was established the same year. The Park began with a plaque attached to a granite boulder in front of two flag poles and grew over the years to include additional plaques, benches, lighting and landscaping. One plaque lists the names of those killed during WWI and WWII, and tells the stories of Price and of Mary Clerk Peake, believed to be first Canadian woman killed in the Second World War. Another plaque lists all the residents who served in the military during the World Wars, the Korean War, in Peacekeeping missions and in Afghanistan. The park also welcomed the addition of the Women’s Institute’s War Brides Memorial and, most recently, their memorial recognizing the contribution of women on the home front, a first in the province.

And so, in appreciation of the work done through the years by Wayne Blenkhorn and the Remembrance Day Observance Committee to honour our veterans at a Remembrance Observance ceremony of which we are justly proud, the Port Williams Community Centre Board of Directors wishes to nominate them for the 2019 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award.


Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Geneve Newcombe

Geneve’s volunteer efforts in the village began when her children were young as she took an active part in their schools, activities and sports teams. This included being president of the PWES Parent-Teacher Association and member of the Hot Lunch Program, treasurer of the Horton Band, member of the Recreation Committee, and project leader in the Cornwallis Project 4-H Club. 

All three children were involved in soccer and particularly hockey. She served as a volunteer soccer coach and manager of various teams in the Port Williams Soccer Association, East Kings Soccer Association and at Horton High School. Her hockey volunteering was not just limited to the team level where she was manager of various East Kings and Acadia Minor Hockey teams and Horton High School Boys’ and Girls’ hockey teams but included many positions of responsibility. She was treasurer of East Kings Minor Hockey, board member of the Valley High School Hockey League, executive member of Acadia Minor Hockey serving as the Female Hockey Co-ordinator for 12 years, Zone Representative South Conference for the Nova Scotia Female Hockey Council.  Her countless hours of volunteering helped to ensure that female hockey was a priority at the local, high school and provincial level and enabled the girls of her community and province to have the same opportunities to participate in competitive and recreational minor hockey as their male counterparts.

Geneve, a member of a 9thgeneration farming family, is passionate about bringing agricultural awareness to schools because she feels that it is important for the public to understand where their food comes from and to value those who produce it. This work starts at home as she is an active agricultural ambassador hosting tours of the Cornwallis Farms for schools and groups. As well she is a member of the Agriculture in the Classroom program which brings the science and technology of chick hatching into grade 2-6 classrooms, is involved with Canadian Agriculture Literacy week which brings famers and agrologists into the classroom each spring and served on the Nova Scotia Agricultural Awareness Committee.  

Village organizations that benefit from Geneve’s current involvement are the Port Williams Women’s Institute, the Chipman Corner Cemetery (treasurer), the Belcher Street March Body (secretary-treasurer) and the Town and Country Quilt Guild (president). 

She initiated a special project that combined the efforts of a group of local women with provincial and national organizations to benefit people in another land.  The Egg Farmers of Nova Scotia participate in Project Canaan: a 2,500 acre farm in Swaziland that provides care and education to orphaned children, training and employment to families in the region and a sustainable source of nutritious food. Geneve challenged the Quilt Guild to make quilts for the babies in the Project Canaan Orphanage. Anticipating approximately 20 quilts, over 100 were made, and later displayed at the Egg Farmers of Canada AGM in Ottawa before being shipped to Swaziland.

She is also an active member of the Kings Presbyterian Church and is a participant in fund raising for the Canadian Food Grains Bank. 

Volunteering and helping others was, is and will continue to be, a way of life for Geneve, whether those in need are in close to home or far away. 

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Ernie Hovell

Hovell Ernie PVA

Village AGM 2017

Ernie is always ready to serve his community. He knows how to organize people and keep projects on time and within financial constraints. With the help of his many contacts, he is able to make things happen in the Village. He is active in many organizations and in many roles including being a Charter and Life member of the Port Williams and District Lions Club for 47 years, treasurer (40 years) and grave lot marker (22 years) at St. John’s Anglican Church, Parish of Cornwallis. He has also been a village commissioner of Port Williams for 11 years, life member (50 years) and past national director with the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers, as well as a member for 53 years and past director of the Associated Alumni of Acadia University.

Ernie is particularly proud of the 40-foot addition of that was added to the Port Williams Community Centre while he was president of the Lions Club. Ernie was named a Melvin Jones Fellow by the Lions Clubs International Foundation in 2015 for dedicated humanitarian services and received the Democracy 250 Citizenship Certificate and Medallion in 2008 from the Province of Nova Scotia.

Ernie’s long standing record of volunteerism speaks for itself—his involvement with the local Lions Clubs, his church, the Village Commission, his alma mater, and his work peer groups all emphasize his efforts towards the Lions motto “We Serve”.


Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year

Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Sylvia Jacquard

The Port Williams Recreation Committee would like to nominate Sylvia Jacquard for the 2016 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award.

Sylvia grew up in Port Williams, and comes from a family with a long history in the village and as volunteers. She and her husband Stillman raised their two children here and Sylvia was a Brownie and Beaver leader when they were young.

She is a volunteer who wears a number of hats but what many of them have in common is Sylvia’s pride in her community. She most obviously shares this through her Port Williams News column in the Kings County Advertiser where Sylvia not only promotes upcoming events but also writes mini-stories about the people and activities of “The Port”. She has also written many articles for the newspaper about the accomplishments of village residents and organizations.

Sylvia lends her writing and photography skills to special projects. She works with the Port Williams & District Lions Club to put together their anniversary and Port Williams Days pages for the newspaper and compiles the Port Williams submissions for the triannual Kings County Recreation Guides.

She enhances the village website by posting event photos in the Village Photo Gallery, “A Year in the Life of Port Williams” and newspaper articles in “Port Williams in the News”. She also maintains the community scrapbooks, cutting and pasting news items from the local newspapers.

Sylvia volunteered at the Murdoch C. Smith Memorial Library as a teenager, became a member in 1982 and joined the Board of Trustees in 1990. She was the organizer of the monthly events during the celebration of the library’s 50th anniversary year in 2008 and in 2012 brought StoryWalk to the Port Williams Park. She became the Chair of the Board of Trustees in 2013 and served on the committee that was responsible for the library’s extensive renovations.

She is the longtime secretary of the Port Williams Recreation Committee, where she has spearheaded its annual Winter Frolic since 1999 and maintains the Recreation webpage. Through her membership in the PWRC she became involved in the Community Centre Board of Trustees in 2011 and became its chair in 2013. It is no surprise that she was actively involved in Centre’s new Community Events sign project.

The PWRC would like to recognize the person who tells the stories of the village and its residents so well by nominating Sylvia Jacquard for the 2016 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Brian Tupper
Brian Volunteer
One would be hard pressed to think of a person more a part of this village, more a backbone volunteer than Brian Tupper. Brian grew up in Port Williams, married, and raised his family here. He also works in and for the village as our rural mail driver with Canada Post; is the faithful caretaker of our Community Centre and a local entrepreneur having established A'N'T Janitorial & Supplies.

Brian recently joined the local TOPS (Taking Off Pounds Sensibly) #2688 and immediately became an active part of the group, doing whatever needed to be done. He is currently helping to canvass items for the group's upcoming silent auction fundraiser to enable members to attend the Provincial Area Recognition event in Antigonish in May.

But it is through his volunteer work as a longtime member of the Port Williams and District Lions Club that he has most contributed to his hometown. Brian joined the Lions in 1989, having been sponsored by his father, William. He has had 25 years of perfect attendance, been President for two terms: 1995-96 & 2001-02 and is currently Club secretary, a position that he has held for six years. Along the way he has served in other Club offices and on various committees.

Only three years after becoming a Lion, he accepted the responsibility of heading up the annual Christmas Food Basket program, a job he has now been doing for 22 years. He has been an active participant in the Adopt-a-Highway project since 1994 and was one of the leading salespersons for the 911 civic number signs.

He has served as the Lions representative on the Port Williams Recreation Committee since 1999 and attends the monthly meetings of the Village Commission, reporting on the work of the Club.

Brian has been the heart of Port Williams Days since 2008: the weekend when we welcome everyone to our village-wide yard sale, Mock Jail, fireworks, children's parade, community supper and other events. He is the one who does the paperwork and works with others to enable the events to take place. He was instrumental in making a fireworks display part of the weekend his very first year in charge and he and the Lions have been able to gather sufficient donations each year since so that this very popular event is able to continue.

He is also someone who goes that extra mile: coming over to the Community Centre on a Sunday to let a volunteer into the Community Centre early so they can start setting up for an event or making a cross of evergreens that will last throughout the winter for the Veterans' memorial. He is the go-to person for so many questions or problems.
Brian is a unique person in that everything he does in his jobs and his volunteer activities in some way benefits the village and its residents, and this is why the Port Williams Community Centre Board of Trustees has nominated Brian Tupper for the 2015 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year

Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year
Port Williams Women's Institute

WIN Volunteer

The Port Williams Women's Institute, one of the first three branches in Nova Scotia, has just completed the celebration of their 100th anniversary year, and the Port Williams Recreation Committee feels that this is a most appropriate time to recognize the group for their many contributions to the village.

The Women's Institute led the way in the preservation of our history with their Canadian centenary project "The Port" Remembers, a 256-page history of our village and its centennial homes. They erected, and continue to maintain, a cairn in memory of the New England Planters and helped with the work at the Fox Hill Cemetery.

The group also began themselves, or helped to launch, two initiatives that continue to this day. The Adopt-a-Highway program was piloted in part in our village, and officially launched here in 1994, by the Institute, the Port Williams and District Lions Club and Clean Nova Scotia. The WI also began, in the early nineties, the Special Friends program at the Port Williams Elementary School that matched students with Institute members who became their friends and mentors. Even more children benefited as others in the community became Special Friends as well.

Another Canadian centenary project was the purchasing of the green street name signs (which are still in use today). WI Week, the anniversary of the Women's Institute in Canada, is the third week in February; and in the late nineties our branch thought that a particularly appropriate celebration of the event would be the erection of a flagpole at the Community Centre since National Flag Day is February 15th. They also supported our Brownie and Girl Guides groups and provided Sunshine boxes for the sick and shut-ins.

The Institute continues to do many projects that enhance the lives of individuals and support organizations in our community and beyond. They celebrate Valentine's Day by visiting shut-ins and bringing them flowers.

Children who live on farms, or who visit the farms of their friends, are safer for having participated in one of WI Farm Safety Days (held in conjunction with other Kings County WI branches). The many youngsters who attend the annual Community Christmas Tree Lighting Party appreciate the treats that the group provides (via Santa), while everyone enjoys the refreshments.

Their support of youth continues with our 4-H club, Cornwallis Project, the Horton High School Safe Graduation program and university scholarships.

The village's support of Princess Port Williams begins with the Women's Institute-organized Candlelight Dessert party where our princess is chosen and given the proceeds from the event to help with her expenses. The Institute also constructed the Princess float for many years.

They recently chose, as a memorial of their anniversary year, to put a bench in the Donor Garden at the Port Williams Park.

And so, the Port Williams Recreation Committee has nominated the Port Williams Women's Institute for the 2014 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award in recognition of the work that the group has done during their first 100 years to make our village a better place.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year

Eldon and Deanna Smith


Eldon and Deanna Smith, partners in life and volunteerism, are the recipients of the 2013 Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award.

The couple, who celebrated 50 years of marriage in 2012, moved to Port Williams in 1969 and built a home on Belcher Street where they raised their sons Michael and Ronnie. Deanna taught for almost 30 years, most of it at Port Williams Elementary School where she shared her artistic and crafting gifts with colleagues and students.

Since her retirement in 1994, Deanna has had more time to spend painting, quilt making and crafting. She has always been generous with her creations: donating quilts to Chrysalis House, doing many paintings for family, friends and neighbours, made even more special in that many were representations of their homes or cottages. The two often assist each other in their pursuits. Eldon builds the wooden puzzles that Deanna makes for children and Deanna has often helped in the kitchen at Lions' dinners and most recently donated a painting to the Lions' Valentine's Day Dinner.

Most of Eldon and Deanna's volunteering has been done in connection with the Port Williams and District Lions Club of which Eldon is a charter and life member. During the course of his 43 years as a member, Eldon was on the executive as President for two terms, Vice-President, Director, and Lion Tamer, serving as well on many committees as member and chair.

While King Lion in 1983-84 he introduced a Neighbourhood Watch Program in the village for which the Club received a Crime Prevention Award from the Solicitor General of Canada.

In the early years of the Club he headed a group that was responsible for the outdoor skating rink on Belcher Street spending many hours cleaning and flooding the ice. His expertise as an electrician was invaluable when the Club installed lights so that the rink could be used for skating at night.

Eldon makes the posts for the 911 civic number signs sold by the Lions and on behalf of the Club he assisted the Village Commission with various projects including the construction of the stage in the Community Centre.

But it Eldon and Deanna's many years of work on the Apple Blossom Festival Float Committee of the Lions Club (chair from 1978-1980 and 2003 to the present) for which we particularly wish to recognize them. With his skills in construction and Deanna's in art they have been the perfect team as she designs the floats, he constructs them and she paints and decorates them (with the help of other Lions Club members). Over the course of a decade their skilful collaboration has resulted in a prize-winning float for the village virtually every year.

Twenty-twelve was particularly rewarding as the float not only carried Queen Annapolisa 80th, Princess Port Williams, Samantha Whynot, but it was chosen as the Most Outstanding Princess float.

And so the Board of Trustees of the Community Centre feels that it is only fitting that on behalf of all village residents who have ever seen, appreciated and felt a community pride in our beautiful Princess floats that we nominate Eldon and Deanna Smith for the Port Williams Representative Volunteer Award.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year

Harold Benedict

Volunteer Harold

The best way to sum up the Port Williams recreation Committee nomination for Harold Benedict is to say "Whenever there is something that needstitle to be done, he is there doing it."

The Recreation Committee is responsible for the maintenance of a Ball field, multiple soccer fields, an outdoor rink, the Launcher Athletics throws facility and most recently the new Port Willaims Park. And when you look to see who is doing the physical work, one of those people is always octogenarian Harold Benedict.

Even before his move to Port Williams in 2001, he would lend a helping hand with the Village's recreation projects. And now that he lives here, he is the one doing the important tasks on a consistent basis. Tasks that are necessary to keep the facilities ready to use. It is Harold who is clearing the pond and flooding it in time for the cold snap, Harold who does the difficult and onerous work each year of putting the softball backstop net up and Harold who has greatly extending the lives of the tractors that mow the playing fields.

His expertise in heavy equipment meant that he was heavily involved during the construction of two soccer fields, the Veteran's Memorial and the Launchers Athletic field. His technical knowledge and assistance ensured that the work of laying concrete, digging post holes, and erecting the safety cage for the throws facility was done correctly, And the floor of the equipment shed that had never been even? One day it was level, the building jacked up and secured thanks to Harold.

The shed at the rink received a thorough upgrade at Harold's hands. He was responsible for jacking up the building, stripping and reshingling the roof, installing 1/2" plywood on the inside and the application of new vinyl siding.

Of special note is his work with the Port Williams Park. Not only was he involved in its construction, starting with the brush clearing and leveling the ground, then continuing with the actual construction of the playground by helping assemble the steel foundation, putting together the play structure, digging holes for the posts for the hard surface court, but he kept the park greenery alive during that first crucial summer. Every day of theose hot summer months, Harold was down at the Park, watering the flowers, shrubs and trees.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year

Merle Millett

Merle Millett

Merle Millett's "Passion for sports" has shown itself in many ways: as a player, coach, umpire volunteer. He has played softball, briefly coached minor hockey and softball, umpired and served on the Port Williams Recreation Committee.

During his 13 years as an official, Merle umpired at all levels, including the Eastern Canadian championships and a national game.

Merle became a Trustee of the Port Williams Community Centre in 1987 serving as a Member at Large and also participated for many years in the Women's Institute's Adopt-a-Highway program.

But it was as a ten-year member of the Port Williams Recreation Committee with organizational and maintenance responsibility for the ball field that Merle made his greatest contribution to the village.

Merle's High standards inspired those working with him to maintain the field at such a near-professional level that players, coaches and umpires often praised it. In fact, umpires say it is the 5th best ball field in the province.

Merle rejoined the Hall Trustees as the PWRC representative, serving on the kitchen committee and as secretary for many years. Merle was the long-time Vice Chair of the PWRC and an active participant in its projects until his retirement in 2010.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year

Park Planning Committee


Lieutenant-Governor Mayann Francis (far left) and Minister of Volunteerism Marilyn More (far right) presented Port Williams Park Planning Committee chair Lia Glover Hennigar and fund raising committe chair Laura Churchill Duke with a Provincial Volunteer Award at the 36th Annual Provincial Volunteer Awards on April 12th in Halifax.

In a mere 17 months, the Port Williams Park Planning Committee, chaired by Lia Glover Hennigar, has designed, raised money for, and successfully completed phase one of the construction a multigenerational, centrally located park for the residents of Port Williams.

It was less than 2 years ago in June, 2008 that Lia stood up at the Village's Annual Meeting to express the need for Port Williams to have a park. That September, she and a group of like-minded residents and friends got together and the Port Williams Park Planning Committee was born. It consists of committee chair Lia Glover Hennigar, fundraising chair Laura Churchill Duke, webmaster Jonathan Shum, Village Commission member Lewis Benedict, Municipal Councilor Janet Newton, Recreation Committee member Wayne Blenkhorn, and community members Ann Greener, Wendy Zwicker, David Hovell, Scott McCulloch, and Leigh Morrison.

The early stages of park planning included two open house events to gather ideas and get feedback from residents. After approval from the Village Commission in April, 2009 landscape architect was hired to design the park. The creation of the park, which is projected to cost approximately $180,000, was divided into three phases, the first of which included an accessible driveway and parking area and a hard surface court which was constructed in the summer, playground equipment which was installed in December and basketball nets and swings which will go up this spring.

Within the first year they earned more than the $80,000 required to complete phase one by actively pursuing grants and doing many fundraisers. They successfully obtained twelve grants totaling $94,916 and their innovative fund raisers included spring's Showcase 4 Kids, the Port Williams Days Canteen, Renovators' Paradise House Tour, followed by summer's Sobey's barbecue and Summer Camp for Kids. Fall brought their most successful event; Park it at the Pub, which earned over $20,000, Stargazing, the first event held at the Park, the Everything 4 Kids Super Sale, the amazing car hunt and the great bake auction held during the Village's Christmas Tree Lighting party and the event Music - Play for Life Concert on Feb. 21st.

The total money raised now stands at approximately $108,000 with the final two phases of the park scheduled for completion in 2011. They consist of a reflexology garden (the only one on the East Coast), a walking trail, landscaping, benches and a sun shelter for picnic tables.

The committee's website ( and e-newsletter keep community members up-to-date about the work of the committee and progress on the park.

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year

Dorothy Farnsworth

Village Commission Chair Lewis Benedict and Commissioner Ernie Hovell stand with Dorothy Farnsworth, recipient of the Harold B. Legge Volunteer Award and inaugural representative from the village for a Nova Scotia Provincial Volunteer Award. Farnsworth was presnted with the Provnicial Award at a ceremony in Halifax.

The members of the Murdoch C. Smith Library Board nominated Dorothy Farnsworth for Volunteer of the Year for the Village of Port Williams.

A former Air Force wireless operator and instructor, Dorothy last worked for Canada Packers Feed Division in Port Williams. She became a member of the Quarter Century Club retiring in 1986.

Dorothy, known as "Dot" to most, has made an immeasurable contribution to all facets of her community. When trying to establish a time frame for many of her volunteer activities, those questioned would very often say, "Well, she's been doing it for as long as I can remember."

For The Library:
Dorothy is a member of the Murdoch C. Smith Library Association and has worked on the 50th Anniversary Committee during all of 2008. She has assisted two Librarians at the Port Williams Branch of the Annapolis Valley Regional Library as a volunteer during the years 1987 to 1997. She encouraged the local Valley Gardeners to donate many lovely gardening books which are permanent to the Port Williams Branch.

For Her Community:
Dorothy has been involved with the Port Williams Community Centre as Senior's representative on the Kitchen Committee of the Board of Trustees for 9 years. For many summers Dorothy assisted in planting, water and donating plants to the gardens at the Community Centre. For over six years, Dorothy has cut and pasted items of interest from local papers and inserted them in a series of Village scrapbooks which are available at the Village Office. When land adjacent to Dorothy's property was recently purchased by the Village, she with others immediately began to plan a flower garden to make the area more attractive.

As a Constant Gardener:
The gardens that surround her property add a touch of beauty to Main Street. She maintains a real interest in gardening and has been a vital member of Valley Gardeners. Dot has won many awards for her beautiful flowers. She has served as program chairperson, club secretary for 2 years, helps and donates plants to the annual plant sale as well as the planning and caring for the gardens at the courtyard of the Valley Regional Hospital in Kentville.

For Her Church:
As a faithful member of the United Baptist Church of Port Williams, Dorothy has served as auditor for over 35 years. In the past, she has been in charge of hall bookings for the church hall. She also has worked on the Ways & Means (fundraising committee) acting as chairperson for many years. This involved working countless hours at chowder luncheons and funeral receptions. For the last 4 years she has been on the church Decorating Committee and prior to that always donated flowers and plants to beautify the church. She is always one of the first to give a warm welcome to new members of the community.

The Port Williams Auxiliary has been grateful for her many donations of plants for their annual fundraiser and plant sale.

Seniors Club:
Since her retirement, Dot has been a vital member of the Port Williams Seniors Club, serving as President 1992-93, Treasurer and program organizer. She has participated in and acted on the Organizational Committee for the Nova Scotia Seniors Games and been involved with Seniors Expo.

Dorothy for many years has represented the Veterans at various functions on Remembrance Day and for the last few years lays the Village wreath at Acadia University.

Dot is a skilled bridge player and has participated in bridge marathons in the surrounding area.

Aside from her many contributions to organizations and institutions in her community, Dot always keeps in touch with her lifelong friends and supports them in times of illness. She also has been generous in transporting others to various events and meetings, often going far out of her way in all kinds of weather to see that others get there.

We are aware that we have probably omitted many more ways that Dot has been involved as a volunteer. Her humility, generosity with time and talent, creativity and loyalty provide a stellar example for the youth of the Port Williams and enrich the life of others both in and around her community.

Steve Wohlmuth

Village of Port Williams Representative Volunteer of the Year
Harold B. Legge Volunteer of the Year

Steve Wohlmuth

Steve was the driving force behind the construction of a throwing field in the village and the coach of Launchers Athletics, the throwing club that operates from the field. Two provincial records, one in discus and one in shot put, have fallen there recently and it's also the site of a week-long camp that introduces children to throwing events.

2007 Volunteer of the Year Award
Robert Peill

2006 Volunteer of the Year Award
Linda MacKinnon

2005 Volunteer of the Year Award
Mado Graves

2004 Volunteer of the Year Award
Debbie Benedict
Harold Warner

2003 Volunteer of the Year Award
Ian and Nancy Ross

2002 Volunteer of the Year Award
Ron Hamm

2001 Volunteer of the Year Award
Port Williams Volunteer Fire Department

2000 Volunteer of the Year Award
Wayne and Ruth Blenkhorn
Stuart and Audrey Griffin
Marion and Don Newcombe
Port Williams Lioness Club
George Gates

1999 Volunteer of the Year Award
Harold Benedict
Budd and Elinor Miller

1998 Volunteer of the Year Award
Sandra Kempton
Patricia Davis
Janet Newton

1997 Volunteer of the Year Award
Peter and Shirley Jackson
Port Williams Lioness Club
Spurgeon Conrad
Bruce MacKinnon

1996 Volunteer of the Year Award
Alton Calnek
Beth Crouse
Harry Crouse
Kim Graves

1995 Volunteer of the Year Award
Michael Graves
Darlene Keddy
Myrtle Merrett
Port Williams and District Lions Club

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Summer Day Camp
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