Friday, March 8. is International Women’s Day—the day that the entire world focuses on women and the joys, trials and tribulations that beset them from time to time.
This year, as in previous years, Port Alberni City Councillor Wendy Kerr and her partner, John Kenchenten, have spearheaded a celebration of music, comedy and camaraderie entitled In Praise of Women. This year’s show takes place Friday, March 8, 7 p.m. at Char’s Landing on Argyle Street, at Fifth Avenue.
The goal of this year’s celebration is to raise funds in order to purchase a large number of “emergency survival packs” for women, intended to help alleviate the pain suffered when fleeing domestic violence.
Kerr and a handful of volunteers have already assembled 50 colourful handbags filled with essentials such as shampoo and conditioner, soap, toothbrush and toothpaste and other toiletries. Shoppers Drug Mart has helped fill the bags, which include some suitable for teenage girls.
“Our plan is to share them with women in need,” Kerr said. In the past she has donated to Alberni Community and Women’s Services Society (ACAWS), but this year will also provide the bags to the local transition house and perhaps the shelter.
Friday’s variety show promises to be a fast-paced collection of musical and performance acts like The Big Mess father and son duo from Gabriola Island, comedian Paul Alexander, recording artist Marilyn Smith and Alberni-based “east meets west” band Mohr Marsala.
“It’s a smaller venue, more intimate and more like a cocktail party,” Kerr said.
Kerr has organized this event “because I think women need to stand up and work together. We need to have a voice, we need to stick together, stand up and speak up,” she said.
“(Women) bring a lot to the table. Somehow we need to encourage that. This is what I can do.”
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and there will be a no-host bar and refreshments.
Tickets are still available at the Rollin Art Centre on Eighth Avenue at Argyle Street, or by calling Kerr at 250-724-5409.
Edited: For spelling.