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École Centrale marking centennial

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Plans are coming together for a Centrale centennial.

With École Centrale at 604 Day St. set to mark its 100th anniversary, the school announced a framework for how it plans to celebrate, as major celebrations will take place on Sept. 27 and 28 at the school.

Co-principal Sid Shapira is heading up the planning committee. He said the formal ceremony will take place on the Friday night (Sept. 27) beginning at 6:30 p.m. with greetings from River East Transcona School superintendent Kelly Barkman and board chair Robert Fraser. He also hopes to find a notable graduate to speak.

"In terms of speaking to the community, we want someone with a name who has contributed to the community on an ongoing basis," he said.

Shapira added the school is looking to dedicate a mural and a memorial plaque that evening as well, while the school choir will provide entertainment.

Shapira envisions the Saturday festivities as more of a "family event", and he hopes to land a well-known entertainer to headline the day. Other activities will be determined in the coming months.

There’s still plenty to be done in advance of the celebrations, and Shapira will welcome volunteers or donations to help everything come together. He said the next formal meeting won’t be until the spring, but those interested in lending a hand are welcome to contact him at the school at (204) 958-6426.

"We could use all the help we can get," he said. "I’m on email and on the phone half of every day trying to get this stuff going."

He added the school faces a unique set of challenges to planning the best possible celebration.

"We’re not a high school, so we don’t have an alumni association. While our parent council will help us out, they’re not really involved – it’s an auxiliary committee I’ve created (doing most of the planning)," he said. "We can handle the immersion years, but getting anything from the English years has been like pulling teeth."

The school is looking for memorabilia like yearbooks, photos, and trophies from the Central School years to be showcased over the weekend.

He is also looking for multi-generational families who attended the school, noting Central School’s final yearbook in 1983 had two pages of three and four-generation families who took classes at the school.

He noted a special page will be added to the school’s website, http://schools.retsd.mb.ca/ec/Pages/Welcome.aspx, once more details have been confirmed.

dan.falloon@canstarnews.com

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