Musical trio Tiller’s Folly performs during Surrey’s National Seniors Day online event Friday, Oct. 1. (Photo: tillersfolly.com)

Musical trio Tiller’s Folly performs during Surrey’s National Seniors Day online event Friday, Oct. 1. (Photo: tillersfolly.com)

Surrey’s National Seniors Day event goes online with music and two guest speakers

Oct. 1 is National Seniors Day, which coincides with the United Nations International Day of Older Persons

Now a decade old, National Seniors Day will be celebrated virtually in Surrey with guest speakers and a musical performance.

The two-hour online event is planned for Friday, Oct. 1 from 10 a.m. to noon., and will be available for viewing from Oct. 1-4.

Guest presenters include Renée Sarojini Saklikar, Noel Bentley and entertainment by the band Tiller’s Folly.

“Watch the show from the comfort of your home as we acknowledge the contributions seniors make to our communities,” says an event post on the City of Surrey’s website (surrey.ca).

Oct. 1 of each year is National Seniors Day, which coincides with the United Nations International Day of Older Persons and is “an occasion for Canadians to celebrate the profound contributions of seniors in our homes, communities and workplaces,” according to a post on the website federalretirees.ca.

“The 2010 Speech from the Throne (SFT) announced that the Government would support legislation to create a National Seniors Day. The Celebrating Canada’s Seniors Act received Royal Assent on Nov. 18, 2010. Canada’s very first National Seniors Day was celebrated on Oct. 1, 2011.

“For Federal Retirees, tackling seniors’ issues is not reserved for Oct. 1, but National Seniors Day is still a wonderful opportunity to raise awareness and to join a global conversation about healthy aging.”

The Surrey event features Saklikar, a poet, creative writing instructor and author of four books. Her newest book is Bramah and The Beggar Boy, an epic fantasy in verse (Nightwood Editions, 2021), about a female blacksmith and an orphan beggar boy who time-travel, helping survivors in a world ravaged by climate change.

Born in India, Saklikar grew up in towns across Canada, before settling in New Westminster. She was the first poet laureate for the City of Surrey, from 2015 to 2018.

• READ MORE: New ‘epic fantasy series in verse’ from Surrey’s first (and so far only) Poet Laureate.

Fellow guest speaker Bentley is a speaker, emcee and comedian. He “challenges and entertains audiences with his unique perspectives, ability to connect ideas and offbeat humour,” according to a biography. “Noel is the emcee and program co-ordinator for TEDxSurrey. He is a distinguished Toastmaster and has created a public speaking project designed to change how we create and experience keynote talks.

“Currently, Noel is the speaking and storytelling coach for the Surrey SHARES program, which helps participants to uncover and tell their stories. His recent volunteer work includes teaching photography and creating a program to help newcomers to Canada find and keep employment.”

• RELATED STORY: Surrey storytelling program for seniors expands to include 18-and-older.

For more than two decades, the band Tiller’s Folly has been “uniting past with present as modern-day storytellers of lore, singing the West’s pioneer history to life,” a bio says. “From the outset, the band aspired to create acoustic music that is thoughtful, progressive, yet timeless in nature. Music that represents their Pacific Coastal home. They set out to preserve a measure of the West’s colonial heritage in stories and songs.”

For more details about Surrey’s National Seniors Day event, phone 604-598-5708 or email agefriendlyforseniors@surrey.ca.

In addition to other programs and services, the City of Surrey hosts the Seniors Connector resource and referral program in partnership with Seniors Come Share Society. Call 604-531-9400 to be connected to community supports on a range of topics including housing, caregiving, transportation, health and wellness, safety, food security and more.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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Seniors