Following a misty morning, the clouds parted on Bruno Cherry Sunday this past weekend, allowing hundreds of people to gather on the St. Therese grounds to enjoy the sights and sounds. The site was teeming with activity, including a bustling marketplace, food favourites like the Cherry Sundaes provided by Bruno School students, and of course the elephant ears drenched in cherry sauce.
The entertainment tent was a popular destination with people taking a break from the heat to enjoy some of the best local talent.
First up was a family whose acapella efforts filled the audience with delight. The Riley Family is a self-contained musical powerhouse, and along with a little help from a friend, they wowed the morning crowd. From east coast shanties to show tune stylings, the resonant voices of the brothers Will and Kirk Riley and friend Christopher Connelly blended in incredible and powerful harmonies. The onstage theatrics and dance, particularly when they were joined by Eowyn Riley and her sisters, hinted to a polished performing ensemble, even though Cherry Sunday is one of their rare public performances.
“My first performance was probably with my aunts and uncles in a performing arts troupe when I was about one,” explained Will Riley. “I did a little dance on stage with them. From there it’s just been small performances.
Eowyn Riley says, “Our entire family on my mom’s side is very musical. For five years when I was little, my aunts and uncles would travel performing shows, so that was very much the culture we grew up in – performing and music –and it’s sort of transferred down into our siblings.”
Brother Kirk enjoys performing but is not sure if it’s a life calling. His friend, Christopher Connelly embraces the opportunity and is happy to have been accepted into the Riley’s performing fold.
“I moved here six years ago, and we really hit it off,” said Chris, “And since I enjoy performing anyway – my dad is an actor – so it just came naturally, and I started to perform with them every once in a while.”
The group has a charm and energy that would make them welcome on any stage and with any audience. Other musicians for the morning included the folk and earthy pop stylings of Bernadette Reifferscheid and the always popular Walter Bushman. The music continued throughout the afternoon.
“The pancake breakfast started out early this morning and it was fantastic,” said Cherry Sunday Chair Jodi Tremel midway through the day. “All our vendors have shown up; there’s wood, there’s paintings, jewelry, and even a garlic stand. The cherry food is amazing.”
Jodi sent along a special thanks to the volunteers.
“We have the Lions Club, the golf course, the fire hall, the St. Therese Institue and the high school. They are all here working, and all the money they are earning is going to stay in Bruno, so it is amazing.”
Another wonderful cherry-filled Sunday is in the books thanks to the efforts of the many volunteers, vendors and performers that consistently strive to make Bruno Cherry Sunday such a success.
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