For a few days last week, I couldn’t stop singing Build Me Up Buttercup.
I should say I mouthed the words just like I did in choirs back at Haultain School in the 1960s. Have you ever noticed how many people say they were asked not to sing? Who the heck was singing those Christmas carols then?
The reason for me silently singing Build Me Up Buttercup was because of the great rendition JP Samson did at the 24th annual Red Holder Memorial Speech Competition and Banquet.
JP was one of eight elementary school students who gave speeches at the event. Let me tell you, we have some talented young people in our midst.
I was fortunate enough to join Terry Ross and Don Hazelwanter on the judging panel. It was my second time having that honour. It’s a wonderful event, with great food and conversation. But ultimately, the event is about the students who have earned the right to represent their schools.
I am impressed with anyone who can get up and speak in front of a crowd. It is something I am really uncomfortable doing and avoid at all costs.
Students delivered speeches on a wide range of topics, including the evils of smoking, food waste, social media and Indigenous rights. That one was particularly moving, because Kelson Wuttunee-Checkosis of St. Frances School spoke from the heart and from the experiences of his relatives.
But it was JP, a student at Father Vachon, who ultimately stole the show. He won the speech competition, but also entertained the crowd while judges convened in the staff room at W.P. Bate School.
After the awards were presented, JP performed Build Me Up Buttercup to bring the evening to a close. He brought the house down in a rousing sing-along.
The other students competing in the event were Samia Masood of Westmount, Shannen Carlos of Bishop Roborecki, Sarah Svandrilik of St. Michael, Markus Matias of Mayfair, Hissy Subaday of W.P. Bate and Koba Tran of Bishop Klein.
Congratulations to all of you.
Thank you to the Kiwanis Club of Riversdale for inviting me to attend and for the great work its members do in the community. The speech competition, done through its Builders Club, is just one example.
Join me now. Here are the words:
“Why do you build me up (build me up) buttercup, baby
Just to let me down (let me down) and mess me around
And then worst of all (worst of all) you never call, baby
When you say you will (say you will) but I love you still
I need you (I need you) more than anyone, darlin’
You know that I have from the start
So build me up (build me up) buttercup, don’t break my heart”
The Express is happy to be on board as one of the sponsors of the Houghton Boston Dogs’ Breakfast.
In a way, it is coming full circle. I attended the first breakfast way back when in 2001. It was a proud moment, given that then-StarPhoenix publisher Lyle Sinkewicz and other SP staffers were instrumental in founding the fundraising event for the University of Saskatchewan football program.
The breakfast has come a long way in the 16 years since its inception, generating more than $100,000 annually for football scholarships. Approximately 2,000 people attend the event each year – that’s a lot of bacon and eggs for the staff at Prairieland to prepare. And the bacon is always crisp.