By Kathryn Poirier
519.754.0777 Ext. 438 

Wow! The Grand River Council on Aging has been so busy over the past few weeks with several notable successes to celebrate.

As hoped, the 2nd Annual Taco Fest in Harmony Square, on Sunday, September 30, was another outstanding success. More than 1,000 people of all ages enjoyed the taco recipes created by local restaurants.

Harmony Square was a hive of activity with Food Vendors serving their special tacos, Market Vendors with their goods, products or services on display for information and purchase, and families and friends roaming the square munching tacos, relishing candy floss and ice cream from Candilicious and grooving to the tunes provided by local DJ Derek Sears and his team.

The “People’s Choice Award” was presented to Maria’s Pizza West for their delicious taco pizza. Rose Risi in her colourful Mexican sombrero and her sister Angie, could hardly contain their joy as they proudly received a framed certificate and cash prize. Honourable mention goes to Tom Mercante and his team from Mercasa Little Eatery and Van Quach and his crew from Burrito Brothers. All three participating food vendors are to be commended for their commitment to the Grand River Council on Aging and for their generosity in donating their unique tacos.

The GRCOA wishes to acknowledge the many volunteers and the many students from area high schools who were on hand to assist and earn their hours of community service. Last, but by no means least, were the generous sponsors that made it possible. Sincere appreciation goes to the Alzheimer Society, Amber Lea Retirement Centre, Brantford Business Improvement Area, Revera Charlotte Villa, Grand River Community Health Centre, Grand River Healthy Communities, Home Instead, Laurier Brantford, Nancy Tomkins Denturist, Rotary Sunrise and Solis Foods.

The next day, on October 1, 2018, the Grand River Council on Aging celebrated National Seniors Day with the 6th Annual “Workshop on a Bus.” The successful partnership with the City of Brantford, the County of Brant and the GRCOA has led to an annual favourite event for people of all ages wishing to learn more about the City Transit System while riding in a beautiful bus equipped with all the latest accessibility options. This event keeps getting bigger and better every year! With more than 90 people registered for this free event, the City of Brantford provided three buses and drivers. GRCOA Board member DeAnna Renn gave exceptional leadership in the planning and implementation for the event, aptly supported by the volunteers of the Communication Committee. Special thanks go to the Queensview Retirement Centre for the morning refreshments, and to the chef and kitchen of Tranquility Place Retirement Home, for once again donating a delicious luncheon.

A few days later, GRCOA Board President Lucy Marco presented an Age Friendly Community Champion workshop at the Community Development Symposium held at the Best Western Brantford Hotel and Conference Centre. This was followed in partnership with the City of Brantford with the “Let’s Take a Walk” Workshop.

And then on October 18, 2018, the GRCOA welcomed volunteers and supporters to a 10 year Celebration catered by the excellent Brant Community Living team at the Dunn Building. Following a delicious dinner, guests were treated to a most enjoyable program reviewing the accomplishments of the past ten years. This very special evening was all about giving thanks, appreciation and acknowledgement to those who are working so diligently to create age-friendly communities in Brantford, Brant County and Six Nations of the Grand River.

From the Master Aging Plan and its 99 recommendations, the development of the GRCOA, the Community Impact Report containing 628 recommendations and all the many connections and partnerships in between, the participants learned how the voices of its residents have contributed to both the City of Brantford and the County of Brant being recognized by the World Health Organization as Age Friendly Communities.

The Grand River Council on Aging is a registered charitable organization and welcomes donations to assist in carrying out activities necessary to facilitate residents, organizations, local government and business to implement “age-friendly” initiatives. Receipts will be issued for donations of $20.00 or more. Donations can be made through or by mailing to Grand River Council on Aging, 363 Colborne St. Brantford, ON N3S 3N2.