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Mount Albert Sports Day


The History of Mount Albert Sports Day  

A few Mount Albert citizens decided that they would like to have a public playground. Money was collected to secure the land, but the location of the park became a controversy. This issue could not be resolved, so the project was abandoned and the money was returned to the donors.


In 1924, the Women’s Institute decided that they would try to secure land for the park. However, they were told that they could not own property so they persuaded the Town to purchase the land for a park. They needed support from two thirds of the ratepayers in the village and were met with opposition. Finally, enough names were secured and the petition was taken to East Gwillimbury Council - where it was passed on July 15th, 1924. This allowed the Town Fathers to buy the land which is now the Mount Albert Community Park.

Volunteer labour helped to get the grounds in shape for the first Sports Day which was held on June 3, 1925. Crowds came for the procession of parade floats lead by the Mount Albert Band. There were ball games, horseshoe pitching, races and other sports. In the evening, a Minstrel show of local talent took place at the Old Mill.

The community hall was built in 1937 with funds provided by the Estate of Margaret Graham. The East Gwillimbury Council, on a recommendation from the Mount Albert Town Fathers, officially named the hall 'The GRAHAM MEMORIAL HALL', in memory of Margaret Graham and her contribution. The dedication service was conducted by Reverend R.V. Wilson, and the official opening took place on February 3, 1938.

Since 1925, still holding onto the traditions of the past, and adding some new elements, the Committees of Volunteers have worked diligently to keep this tradition alive. This celebration is a big part of Mount Albert’s history. Over the years this Festival has evolved and for many is the symbolic start to our long anticipated summer season. This year will mark the 90th year of this event.

One thing has not changed since 1925. All funds raised during this event stay in the community. Over the years, these funds have been used towards the upkeep of our Community Park, assisted in the creation of “Family Place” within the hall, upgrading the washroom facilities, replaced the kitchen in the hall, accessibility ramp, window covering, stage curtains, baseball bleachers, flag poles, lights on ball diamonds, outside concrete bunker, replacement of bunker door, memorial gate repairs, installation and replacement over the years of the playground equipment, horseshoe pits, and picnic shelter. One year, a large portion of the funds were used to install fencing along the school and park boundaries, for safety in both the park and school grounds. This year one of the key areas we are targeting a portion of the funds to, is repairing the Memorial Gates.


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