Exuberance underpins Abbotsford’s November 30 sale and silent auction

By Julie Ireton

Once again volunteer Noelle D’Arcy lends her exuberance to the good cause of raising funds for Abbotsford programs and services. Photo: Pat Goyeche

Once again volunteer Noelle D’Arcy lends her exuberance to the good cause of raising
funds for Abbotsford programs and services. Photo: Pat Goyeche

Noelle D’Arcy knows many of the merchants in the Glebe and Old Ottawa South by name. That’s not only because for the past 49 years she has made a point of shopping locally, but once a year she also visits many of these shopkeepers looking for – and getting – donations. D’Arcy is in charge of soliciting great finds for the Merchant Silent Auction at Abbotsford at the Glebe Centre’s Annual Bazaar.

“It’s nothing for me to call them up and say it’s Noelle!” said D’Arcy. “I try to impress upon the merchants that we Glebites support our stores – they should support Abbotsford. It needs all the support it can get.”

“Abbotsford is a wonderful resource and not enough people know about it. A lot of people still do not know what it’s all about. It’s kind of a hidden gem.”

Each fall, D’Arcy and an army of volunteers get ready for the ever-popular bazaar. (This year it’s the 38th edition and it’s being held once again at Abbotsford House at 950 Bank St.) There will be the usual book sale, flea market, baked-goods table, jewellery, teddy bears and much more, and the newly formed Elegant Treasures in the dining room.

Planning the Merchant Silent Auction is a big job. The merchandise and gift certificates collected by D’Arcy and fellow volunteers fill up several tables in Abbotsford’s parlour. On bazaar day there are often lines out the door and down Bank Street. “Davidson’s Jewellers always provides a lovely piece of jewellery. Home Hardware gives something every year. One year it was dishes, another it was cutlery,” said D’Arcy. “Glebe Trotters usually gives a nice handbag.” According to D’Arcy, the Merchant Silent Auction really has something for everyone, and would not be the success that it is without the support of many local Glebe and Ottawa South businesses.

D’Arcy is just one of the many 55-plus folks who are members of Abbotsford at the Glebe Centre. Along with her help with the bazaar, D’Arcy also volunteers each Tuesday – foot care day – at the centre’s main desk, by taking payments and booking appointments.

On bazaar day when every volunteer takes up a position behind a sales table, D’Arcy knows exactly where she’ll be. “I’m at the front desk,” she said. “My job is to sell raffle tickets. Some of our craft ladies put together beautiful gift baskets and as people come in and walk by, I tell them not to forget to buy a ticket!” All the money raised goes back into programs and services run by the centre. D’Arcy thinks more people should know about what goes on inside the old stone farmhouse across from Lansdowne Park. “Abbotsford is a wonderful resource and not enough people know about it. A lot of people still do not know what it’s all about. It’s kind of a hidden gem. It’s not like Starbucks out there on the corner.”

Once again the annual bazaar is being generously sponsored by our local community Scotiabank. Not only are they providing a generous monetary donation, but bank employees are rolling up their sleeves and helping set up the sale and count the money afterwards. Thank you Scotiabank for supporting our community programs!

Drop in at Abbotsford, loiter and learn more about its programs and services. And don’t miss Abbotsford’s Annual Bazaar, Saturday, November 30 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Time is short but “oh, so sweet.”

Journalist Julie Ireton regularly writes stories about the programs and services at Abbotsford House.

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