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Rob Altemeyer, MLA Wolseley
June 22, 2016

Mega Bug March

This past Saturday, I was very pleased to join Art City founder Wanda Koop, local City Councillor Jenny Gerbasi, my own daughter Molly and others as we celebrated Art City's annual parade through the West Broadway neighbourhood.

This year's theme was the Mega Bug March. Now, bear with me. It started with a very simple idea: What if a well-meaning, if slightly mad scientist, wanted to create an enlarging ray to provide more food for the world and it went horribly wrong and enlarged all the bugs instead? That's what paraded through the streets of West Broadway.

Madam Speaker, the kids at Art City and the guest artist from Winnipeg, Kenneth Lavallee, spent a month working on their costumes as they learned about entomology and gained a new perspective on our relationship with nature. Together, they created a marching army of ants, butterflies, a swarm of bees and many, many more floats and costumes using papier mâché and the power of their imaginations.

The quality of the parade was quite remarkable, as we ran the–walked the entire route. The parade champion was created by Elaine and Neil Margolis. It was a giant queen bee complete with a royal throne. In true Manitoba style, there was, of course, a giant Slurpee float circled, as it was, by a number of wasps, a 20-foot long canker worm, and it wouldn't be Manitoba without mosquitos in the parade, but one of the floats, thankfully, was a giant can of bug spray.

Based on the generosity of Manitobans, this incredible opportunity was made available to all, even those who couldn't afford to make their own costumes. We all had a wonderful time afterwards at the barbecue at Art City, enjoying great local music and entertainment. And I just want to spend a moment to send a special shout out to all the staff and volunteers at Art City for creating yet another very memorable few hours in the amazing West Broadway neighbourhood.

Thank you, Madam Speaker.