Poppy blanket to help us remember

Members of Niverville Communities in Bloom and a few crafty local residents have been hard at work in recent months to create a visual effect for Remembrance Day, lest we forget.

Five hundred hand-knitted and crocheted red poppies have been strung together to create the Poppy Blanket. That blanket will be draped over the Main Street cenotaph from now until November 11.

An additional 19 hand-crafted poppies were placed at the gravesites of 19 WWI, WWII, and Korean war veterans who rest at the Niverville Heritage Cemetery on Main Street.

Ten local crafters invested hundreds of hours into the creation of the 500-plus poppies. Materials were supplied by Communities in Bloom.

The hope is that the blanket’s effect will be a reminder to passersby in the coming weeks of the veterans, past and present, who made such incredible sacrifices so the rest of us can know peace.

“The idea came from a November visit to Caledonia in Haldimand County, Ontario,” says Communities in Bloom member Shirley Hoult. “They created a lovely display of knitted and crocheted poppies. Niagara Falls also has a beautiful display with thousands of poppies arriving from all over the world. Ours is not so elaborate yet, but when a number of local knitters were contacted, there was great enthusiasm for the project.”

Hoult says that the poppy blanket initiative was presented to the Remembrance Day committee, town council and the United Church, which maintains a portion of the cemetery. All parties were fully in favour of it.

This year’s Remembrance Day ceremony will be held at the Main Street cenotaph on November 11, beginning at 10:30 a.m. There will be no ceremony at the Heritage Centre.

The RM of Ritchot will host a similar ceremony at their Remembrance Day cenotaph, located at the civic office in St. Adolphe. The ceremony begins at 10:40 a.m. on November 11.

Brenda Sawatzky, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Niverville Citizen