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Big Daddy Festival

See Canadian Boxing Legend live and in bronze!

George Chuvalo will be a special guest at the Big DADDY Festival celebrating Father's Day Weekend in Halton Hills. Chuvalo, Canada's greatest heavyweight boxer, had a career which spanned three decades and 93 fights. Noted for his toughness, he fought all the greats and nobody - not Joe Frazier, George Foreman or even Muhammad Ali - ever knocked him out. Outside the ring, however, life has dealt Chuvalo several crushing body blows: he lost three sons to drug addiction and his wife to suicide. Yet, just like in the ring, Chuvalo has refused to go down by using his story of personal pain to help others fight drug addiction.

Join us for an up-close and personal experience with the Peoples' Champion at the Chill Zone at the Williams Mill Visual Art Centre in Glen Williams from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Saturday, June 15. Chuvalo will be available for autographs and a personal photo shoot, with a suggested donation of $10 going to the Fight Against Drugs.

On display will be a life size bronze bust of George Chuvalo and a direct casting impression of his fists created by Gabrielle Fischer, a Williams Mill Artist. Compare your fists with George's!  

The Chill Zone is a great place to bring the whole family to enjoy live music from a number of local musicians, food from the Glen Oven Cafe and festivities. It runs from 3:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
Ryan Parker has been "The Kid" all his life. First because he was the youngest in his family and then in 2002 he was officially dubbed "The Kid" on the very popular Derringer in the Morning Show on Classic Rock Q107. Now at 37 he is still "The Kid" with two very lively boys, Travis 4 and Rory 2.  That seems to leave Charlene, his wife, the only adult in the house.

The Parker home is brimming full of family, fun, love  and music and if you are a fan of Q107 you would expect that. In the car headed to Toronto at 3:45 each morning makes for a long day but Ryan is home to play with Rory mid afternoon (and maybe sneak in a nap) and then off to pick up Travis at the bus. Play with boys means lots of smashing trucks and Ninja moves but we also saw Ryan was nicely sharing his Star Wars figures.

Ryan and Charlene have just moved to Acton and they love the sense of community,  the people and the small town feeling. Their neighborhood is all on the same page - kids - and everyone looks out for one another.

Ryan writes a very insightful blog for urbanmoms.ca about being a dad and he remarked that when reflecting on the day it is always the smallest things that are his favourite part and that mean the most. For example things like flying a kite and wrestling with the kids (while he can still beat them). And these are the things he also remembers doing with his dad. Charlene and family hail from Cape Breton and music is in their DNA so the Kitchen Caleigh is an essential part of their life with Rory already joining in on the guitar. And then there is Soccer. Having played all his life but sidelined due to injury Ryan is now incredibly proud to coach U5 Team #9 Royal Blue.

Father's Day Weekend is going to be a big one for the Parkers. Don't tell Ryan but Travis is making chocolate chip pancakes with mushy bananas for breakfast on Saturday June 15 before they head out to the Festival on Main in Georgetown to enjoy the market, the Mighty Machines,  bouncy castles and many more activities at the JET.  If the boys still have energy Ryan hopes to introduce them to Canada's greatest heavyweight boxing champion George Chuvalo at the Williams Mill because it is not often you can punch things without getting in trouble. Saturday night Ryan is the celebrity judge for the very prestigious Acton's Got Talent Event at the Acton Town Hall.

On Sunday the family will hook up with Ryan's dad and brother and head down to look for some British made cars at the Classics Against Cancer event. Travis and Rory would like to paint turtles and then make instruments at Willow Park Ecology Centre, playing them at the Native Drum Circle.

Travis was pretty pleased to get a Big DADDY Tattoo that says "I Love My Dad". He looked at Ryan and said "I love you because you are my best buddy." We give Ryan the highest Big DADDY score - even if he is a kid.

Bring your best buddy to the Big DADDY Festival and get your own tattoo.



When you meet Doug Lounsbury you quickly know why his kids call him “Father of the Universe” – he is busy, busy, busy and happy being that way! Doug, a local insurance broker with wife Stephanie, and father to Grace (11), Wyatt (8) and Ava (4), has a lot on (think rep sport chauffeur, team coach, soccer start-up event goer, spring gardener, grocery buyer, and Lobsterfest volunteer during one recent weekend and you will get a sense of it) but he seems to be managing it all with an abundance of energy, good humour and one key ingredient – involvement. Doug spends a ton of time with his wife and children and being so involved makes him this happy and positive. Doug tells us that he is the person he is because of the four people he sees at the dinner table each night and that makes him feel so blessed!

On the subject of Dad-day plans the Lounsbury children won’t give much away but Wyatt will tell you that a sleep-in and bacon-and-egg breakfast may be part of the weekend as well as a bike ride to the Big DADDY Festival in Downtown Georgetown on Saturday as part of the Bike It to the Market activity in time for the free pancakes – yum! The whole family is planning to bounce on some bouncy castles, crawl up to blow the horn and get their picture taken at the Mighty Machine exhibit, and take in all of the performers and activities on Main street. Grace, who has an artistic flare, is looking forward to being coached on how to life-draw her Dad at the Cultural Centre as well as getting a henna tattoo with her Mom. To round out Saturday the Lounsbury family are heading over mid-afternoon to the Williams Mill in Glen Williams where they will try their hand at the soapstone carving and other do-it-yourself art activities. Doug is especially looking forward to meeting Canadian boxing legend George Chuvalo in the Chill Zone and hanging out with him while they listen to some local bands – cool!

Sunday Doug is volunteering with B2C for a few hours with the Classics Against Cancer Car Show in Cedarvale Park and then heading home for a family barbeque. Some other surprises are planned which we can’t give away here (Ava stresses there may be lots of hugs and kisses involved ) but you can be sure that whatever they are doing the Lounsbury family will be busy, together and having lots of fun!

Happy Father’s Day Doug from the Big DADDY Festival – you make us proud!!!


Being the father of teenagers is always crazy, but Kris Dechnik takes that challenge on with a smile. Spending a day with the Dechniks you soon see the fun-filled manner that Kris adds to everything he does. Whether it is pranking neighbors’ pets or tubing at their cottage, Kris is the life of the party wherever he goes. These few examples, along with many other ones that came up during our chat, are just some of the traits that make Kris an amazing father to Julia, 17 and Adam, 14. “He sure does keep things interesting” said Julia as the family laughed over their dad’s many antics.

To thank a dad who is this much fun Julia and Adam have some amazing things planned for their Father’s Day celebrations. After Julia and Adam go to the Indie Band Night being held at the John Elliott Theatre and featuring local youth bands, they plan to take their dad to the Chill Zone at Williams Mills in Glen Williams. There they are getting a family portrait taken, meeting former heavyweight champion boxer George Chuvalo and listening to some cool tunes. Just up the street at the Beaumont Mill Kris is interested in seeing the Skiff Building Demonstration and his wife Krystina is looking forward to checking out the antiques. On Sunday the family plans to take in the cool vintage cars on display in Cedarvale Park at the annual Classics Against Cancer.

The Dechniks know that this is sure to be a great weekend and honouring fun-filled dad Kris will be the most important part!

Collingwood's Elvis Festival, Streetsville's Bread & Honey Festival, Toronto's Santa Claus Parade...they all started somewhere. They all started when a person, or group of people asked the question, "what if we celebrated....?" Collingwood's Elvis Festival began 16 years ago and is now the biggest Elvis Festival in the world. Streetsville's Bread & Honey Festival has been going for 38 years and is still going strong. Organizers of the Big DADDY Festival are hoping that over the years, their festival will become the signature event that Halton Hills is known for. Halton Hills is a friendly, family oriented town, so why not celebrate this important day in family life?