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World-class fiddlers to entertain at Gingerwood gala fundraiser Nov. 3

Corrine Hendricken-Eldershaw, left, chief operating officer of the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I., is shown with board members Martie Murphy, centre, Alzheimer researcher Dr. Jackalina Van Kampen, and Nelson Hagerman to help promote An Evening to Remember, a gala fundraising event at Gingerwood being held Nov. 3 to raise funds for the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I. JIM DAY/THE GUARDIAN
Corrine Hendricken-Eldershaw, left, chief operating officer of the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I., is shown with board members Martie Murphy, centre, Alzheimer researcher Dr. Jackalina Van Kampen, and Nelson Hagerman to help promote An Evening to Remember, a gala fundraising event at Gingerwood being held Nov. 3 to raise funds for the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I. JIM DAY/THE GUARDIAN

STANHOPE, P.E.I. – Gingerwood will once again reverberate with top-notch live entertainment to raise funds for the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I.

The world-renowned musical husband and wife team of Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy will perform their high-energy fiddling at the home of Martie and Danny Murphy in Stanhope on Nov. 3.

The couple, which has performed at festivals around the world, will also be joined by a couple of their talented children.

MacMaster is a superstar on the Celtic music scene. She has built a multi-decade career playing fiddle and headlining must-see live performances.

She has collaborated many times with her husband, who is a renowned fiddler in his own right. Leahy has devoted his life to playing and performing as a solo artist and with his 10 siblings in the group Leahy.

The musicians will carry on a tradition of high-quality performers gracing Gingerwood for a good cause.

“We are thrilled to have two of the world’s most celebrated fiddlers to create an unforgettable ‘Evening to Remember’ for Alzheimer P.E.I. at Danny and Martie Murphy’s home,’’ says Corrine Hendricken-Eldershaw, chief executive officer of the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for people to hear more about the disease and a way for people to gather in an evening of entertainment.’’

The annual event, now in its 12th year, has to date raised close to $1 million in support of the society’s work in P.E.I. that includes valuable programs and services as well as advocacy.

With more than 2,500 Islanders living with dementia, Hendricken-Eldershaw says demand for services offered by the Alzheimer Society of P.E.I. continue to rise.

Martie Murphy has for years had a strong personal push to raise awareness and funds to help combat Alzheimer’s disease, which is a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behaviour.

Her father, Stephen Tollestrup, was diagnosed with the disease 15 years ago.

She says her dad tackled his increasingly challenging condition with a great attitude and infectious humour.

He died in March at the age of 82.

“One of the reasons he lasted so long was he was surrounded by family,’’ notes Murphy, who has been heavily involved in raising funds and awareness for a dozen or so years.

The gala at Gingerwood does both quite well.

“The goal is for us to create an evening to remember and that comes from being together and supporting a wonderful organization such as the Alzheimer Society,’’ says Murphy.

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