When Sackville resident Claude Lachance passed away in 2011, the community lost a gifted performer and friend. His memory however, will live on in the small, but mighty local music industry with a special fund that has been created in his name. Money raised for the Claude Lachance Memorial Fund will come primarily from the proceeds raised from 50/50 draws at the Weir Rockin' concert in Upper Sackville.
After six years of sell-out shows, the steering committee for the annual Weir Rockin' event is comfortable in saying it's a huge success and is ready to reach out and give back to the community that has supported them since day one. After much consideration the committee has decided to help musical artists in the Sackville community.
"There are so many talented people here," said Eventurous Theatre Company president and steering committee member Stacey Moore. "We thought this would be the perfect thing to do."
Lachance was well known in Sackville as a musician, performer, composer and arranger. He was a member of the Stadacona Band and an original founder of the Sackville Community Band. He directed choirs, staged musical productions and more. Ever generous with his talent, Lachance also brought his music into hospitals, nursing homes and prisons as well.
The steering committee, with the support of Lachance and his family, decided to establish the fund in his name.
"He knew about it before he passed away," said his youngest son Dan, also a musician. "He thought it was a fantastic idea. He was very happy and honoured."
Moore said now is the time to get the message out there and let people know about the 50/50 draw and where the proceeds will be going.
"We'll have a form online for people to fill out letting us know what their need is," she said. "The money could go to a group or an individual to help with equipment or learning music, or acquiring music...anything in the arts related field of which Claude was so involved."
There is no way of knowing how much money will be raised, but with a potential 3,000 people buying tickets, add to that the tips donated by the Kinsmen Club barbecue and the number could be in the thousands, she said.
"We are excited about sharing his spirit of music," said Moore. "Claude shared everything he knew and we want to give this money to an artist who will do the same."
For more information on Weir Rockin' and the Claude Lachance Memorial Fund for the Arts go to www.weirrockin.com