Enjoying lots of CSL camaraderie at Men's Club luncheon in Boca Raton with George Nashen (left) and Syd Kronish (right)

Enjoying lots of CSL camaraderie at Men’s Club luncheon in Boca Raton with George Nashen (left) and Syd Kronish (right)

The Cote Saint-Luc Senior Men’s Club is active well beyond the borders of Cote Saint-Luc, or even Canada for that matter. Earlier this week I had the good fortune of meeting up with them as a guest speaker at their annual mid-winter luncheon in Boca Raton, Florida. Over 200 members and spouses packed the Bonefish Grill Restaurant in Boca Raton for a little catch up on news and events from back home, entertainment, delicious food and mingling with friends and neighbours.

Beth Zion past president Joe Presser (right) and guests enjoying the warm times down south

Beth Zion past president Joe Presser (right) and guests enjoying the warm times down south

I was asked to bring greetings on behalf of the City Council and to speak about current affairs in our city as well as at the Jewish General Hospital where I serve as Director of Public Affairs and Communications. I happily obliged updating the group on the opening just two days earlier of the new JGH Emergency Department, about the brief submitted by the JGH to the National Assembly against Bill 60 (the Charter of Quebec Values) and about the upcoming season of JGH Mini-Med School.

From Shalom Ave in CSL to Century Village in Deerfield Beach. My childhood neighbours from Cork Ave Ruth and Moe Gerstein.

From Shalom Ave in CSL to Century Village in Deerfield Beach. My childhood neighbours from Cork Ave: Ruth and Moe Gerstein.

CSLers were also pleased to learn that property tax increases had been kept in line with the rate of inflation at 0.9% and a new Emergency Notification System will be implemented this Spring. I encouraged members of the Men’s Club to consider joining CSL volunteer Citizens on Patrol, modeled after the group of the same name in the Broward Sheriff’s Office in Deerfield Beach.

Entertainer extraordinaire from Montreal to South Florida, Ian Cooney, was the "Life of the party."

Entertainer extraordinaire from Montreal to South Florida, Ian Cooney, was the “Life of the party.”

Ian Cooney is an amazing entertainer who is familiar to many Montrealers. Cooney has written hundreds of jingles you’ve heard over the years from the Schreters commercial (“Shop Schreters, you’ll save a lot of money…”) to the longtime Meldrum the Mover ad on CJAD to the Nana Musical for the JGH. He was also a member of the Shaare Zion Congregation Choir for many years. Now located in South Florida, Cooney is the one to call for all sorts of parties, large or small, for corporate and institutional jingles or for any entertainment need. He can be reached via his website or at 561-221-3508.

Men's Club funny man Manny Young

Men’s Club funny man Manny Young

I was most pleased to publicly endorse CSL Mayor Anthony Housefather’s bid to become the Liberal Party of Canada’s candidate in Mount Royal riding. While Housefather spoke last week to several hundred members of the Canadian Club at Century Village in Deerfield I was among a couple hundred more “locals” most of whom hail from Mount Royal riding which includes Cote Saint-Luc, Hampstead, TMR and the Snowdon District.

The best supporters a candidate can have. Myrna and David Housefather.

The best supporters a candidate can have. Myrna and David Housefather.

The crowd was most receptive and eager to support Housefather’s candidacy and agreed with my assertion that he would be a tremendously vocal Member of Parliament. With the grim prospect of a PQ majority on the horizon we surely need a loud voice in the Canadian Parliament to support National Unity against separatism, to defend the English-speaking community in Quebec against oppressive language laws and the ridiculous language cops as well as to safeguard religious expression against Bill 60.

What residents of the riding need to do now is sign up as a member of the party so that they can attend the upcoming nomination meeting in the riding to elect Housefather as the official candidate.

Lots of interest in signing up to support Anthony Housefather

Lots of interest in signing up to support Anthony Housefather

I spoke with some of those in attendance who told me they want to support Prime Minister Harper in the next election. I respect that opinion and frankly I too am awestruck and so appreciative with his solid support of the State of Israel. To those of you who have drifted toward the conservatives I said the following:

  • At this point we are talking about supporting Anthony as the Liberal nominee. We are not voting in a general election. Given that Mount Royal has always voted Liberal since the riding was created back in the 1940s it would be strategically wise to select the best candidate for this party in this riding. Obviously you can vote for whomever you wish come the elections (although we hope that choice will be for Anthony Housefather).
  • In the long run, our system doesn’t allow us to vote for Prime Minister, just for our Member of Parliament. To that end, regardless of party (or level of government for that matter) my preference is to choose the very best candidate who will work for us locally. Once in office, our MP should fight for our local rights, serve and protect our interests, speak up on matters of local concern. Who better than Anthony to continue to fight for our rights as he has done in matters of language, national unity and so much more. In this arena I expect he will be one of the most outspoken representatives on the national scene for years to come.

I have worked side by side with Anthony for 15 years both in the municipal sphere as well as advocating for Quebec’s English-speaking community. I know he is the right representative for our community. I closed off my portion in asking everyone to join me in nominating him as our local Liberal candidate.

George Nashen (centre) and Herbert Paperman (right) kibbitz as the Men's Club luncheon wraps up

(L to R) Henry Geneile, George Nashen and Herbert Paperman kibbitz as the Men’s Club luncheon wraps up

The CSL Men’s Club is a magnificent group, ably headed by President Sidney Margles, that delivers quality programs and social interaction to keep seniors better informed, entertained and intellectually stimulated. Couple this with winters away in the warmth of the Florida sunshine and you have a winning formula for quality, healthy times for so many special Cote Saint-Lucers.

Enjoy your winter and I look forward to seeing you all safe and sound back up north real soon.

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