Pinkies were up on November 3, at the fifth annual High Tea for Hospice for the Townsend Smith Foundation. This year the event found a new home at the Italian Canadian Club of Milton (ICCM) and a new theme with the popular television show Downton Abbey.

The High Tea was one of the first events held at the club’s newly renovated hall. The ICCM had won a Trillium grant to make over the venue adding new flooring, storage, and a basement lounge. It took volunteers four days to organize the room, resulting in an atmosphere evocative of the Downton Abbey era. No detail was left to chance, including the servers’ aprons.

Tables covered in black tablecloths were formally set for the high tea provided by Edwina Doddington and the Escarpment Tea Room. Guests wore outfits that were a tribute to the era from flappers to dresses reminiscent of the television show. A DVD was projected onto one wall of some of the behind-the-scenes shorts on the manners of the era. They had a chance to buy hats for $25 each, and fascinators for $20. There was a silent auction, live auction, and a 50/50 draw. “The entire community seemed to be a part of it. From buying tickets to donating prizes to contributing their time,” Board member Sarah Jensen said. It raised approximately $13,000.

Father Mark Curtis kicked off the afternoon’s festivities with a short blessing and a statement about hospice. Prize draws, and a live auction took place throughout the afternoon. The Townsend Smith Foundation has been working to bring a 10-bed residential hospice to North Halton since 2009. The foundation is working with the Town of Milton to secure land at the corner of Steeles and Martin St. For more on the Townsend Smith Foundation including how to contribute, please visit their website at: www.townsend-smith.ca. ur

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