Mothers' Day celebtration in Ottawa

  Mother’s Day Performance by Ottawa’s Slovak School Children

Slovak kids may be known to the world as becoming professional hockey and tennis players but here in Ottawa it looks as if we are raising the future Academy Award winners.

The Slovak School for children, which runs every Saturday during the school year, performed the Slovak National Folk Tale "O dvanástich mesiačikoch" for Mother’s Day after the monthly Slovak Mass at St. Hyacinth Church. The kids showed their mothers not just how much they appreciate them, but also how much they can learn and use their motherhood language and culture.

The teachers Jana Plesnikova and Jana Babiakova spent many weeks teaching the children not just how to act and recite but also how to stage a play. The complicated graphic artwork for the whole set, the stage layout, and all the other aspects were done by the children themselves and they even edited the script and made the costumes.

After the performance, the Ottawa Slovak community was treated to Mother’s Day cakes and coffee in a social gathering organized by our increasingly active Special Events and Youth Activities Committee of the Canadian Slovak League (CSL) Branch No. 63.

It is heartening to see how many Slovaks are willing to volunteer their time to help in a good cause.  Special thanks to Nick Korbel Jr. and his brother Paul for setting up and using their own expensive audio equipment; Livia Koneval and Jana Makusova for acting as the Slovak and English; Pauline Portelance and Stanislava Rozarova for serving the cakes and refreshments; and of course Tibor Dej for photographing the event and Anne Ladouceur and Joe Mader for their behind-the-scenes organization.  A note of appreciation is extended to all parents who made it possible for their children to present a genuine Slovak fantasy play.   

For those not familiar with our history here in Ottawa, the Slovak School was
founded decades ago by CSL Branch No. 63.   It is now run independently by a group of Slovak parents, under the Province of Ontario ethnic school program, but the CSL maintains a close contact as part of its mandate to preserve the Slovak language and culture.

Jan George Frajkor, Ottawa

Photographs: Tibor Dej.

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