Local rider honoured
Ivan Lalonde of Ingleside, a member of the OPP Golden Helmets Precision Motorcycle Team, was honoured during the Ingleside Family Fun Day and introduced to the crowd during the performance. Lalonde is shown performing one of the many precision manoeuvres. Thompson Goddard photo

Precision driving
This photograph clearly shows the precision driving abilities required by members of the OPP Golden Helmets. The audience was very impressed with the performance and the drivers.
Thompson Goddard photo

INGLESIDE – The weather was great for the Ingleside Family Fun Day, in support of the Winchester & District Memorial Hospital; the crowd was estimated to be in excess of 1,500. 

Cindy Ault Peters, manager of direct mail & events for the WDMH Foundation commented in an email to The Chesterville Record how “the event definitely met my expectations,” continuing that the Family Fun Day not only raised “about $2,500 in donations, with more to come” for the Family Care Fund at the hospital but also assisted in raising “awareness of the hospital and why we fundraise [because the government does not pay for medical equipment].”

People were able to meander around the space, located in front of the plaza in Ingleside, visiting with friends, enjoying a bite to eat, perusing the vendors and learning a bit about the hospital as well as other local organizations. For the youngsters there were inflatable rides and a teddy bear care tent.

As the clock ticked closer to the 1 p.m. and start of the OPP Golden Helmets Precision Motorcycle Team, the crowds moved closer to Dickinson Drive for the finale of the day’s events. Since their formation in 1963, the Gold Helmets have fascinated people across the province at fairs, festivals, parades and special events.

From the opening roar of the motorcycles speeding down the road to the final lineup as the performance concluded, there was ample evidence of the riders’ skills. One of the riders performing on Sept. 21 was Ingleside resident Ivan Lalonde, a 24-year veteran of the OPP who joined the Golden Helmets in 2015. During the Family Fun Day and the Golden Helmets performance, Lalonde received special recognition. 

The precision performance lasted just under half an hour and after it ended, people were able to visit with the motorcyclists, with many officers providing autographed cards to their fans.  There was a lot of interest in the motorcycles which are Harley Davidson Police Special bikes that weigh 800 pounds and are the same ones used by officers on patrol.

Peters mentioned how amazing the response was from local businesses, the community and the vendors during the event and commented how she was “absolutely thrilled with the results of the day!” with people from many parts of the area attending; she concluded her email by saying: “It was a great day for WDMH and a great day for Ingleside I hope as well.” In a post event email to The Record, South Stormont councillor Jennifer MacIsaac added, “what a fabulous day to celebrate and recognize our Hometown Hero, Ivan Lalonde. We are very grateful to The Winchester District Memorial Hospital Foundation for all of their hard work in organizing this first class event and coordinating the OPP Golden Helmets show in Ingleside. Those in attendance were thrilled by the precision maneuvers performed by the Golden Helmets; this truly was a wonderful way for OPP to connect with our community!”