Call me Lady Claire
Ivanski (right) wanted to mark the end of the Victorian Tea fundraisers with a present for co-organizer Claire Desrochers (left). Ivanski presented Desrochers with her own plot of land in Scotland from Highland Titles, not only allowing Desrochers to be called Lady Claire Desrochers of Glencoe but also supporting a unique conservation effort in her honour. Also pictured, Queen Victoria impersonator, Sheila Dubyk and Russell Township Mayor Pierre Leroux. Glover photo

EMBRUN – For one last hurrah, Marie Claire Ivanski and Claire Desrochers’ eighth and final Victorian Tea Sat., June 22 managed to pull in an approximate total of $8,000 for the Breast Cancer Foundation.

“It’s a little bittersweet but all good things must come to an end one day,” said Ivanski. “It’s a lot of work, we talked about it last year because it is a lot of work for both me and Claire [Desrochers] and for her husband because he works a lot of the grounds and everything.”

Ladies and gentlemen gathered at Desrochers’ home in Embrun to dress up in their finest dresses and suits to get lost in the art of conversation, enjoy live music and eventually sit down on the veranda for treats and tea. Ivanski was surprised by the large turnout for the Victorian Tea because very little effort was put into advertising for the event. Word of mouth was a heavy determining factor.

“We didn’t put any advertising anywhere,” she said. “We simply just said, ‘save the date,’ and everyone came in and everyone had so many requests. We usually just eat in the dining room but this year, we moved everyone out onto the veranda to allow more guests.”

With the Victorian Tea running its course, Ivanski wants to concentrate on different ideas and future fundraisers coming up later this year. 

“You know, I think everything comes to an end,” she said. “Sometimes, some events could last forever and others do have an expiry date and we want to go out on top.”