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Unity Music Festival announces 2024 Volunteer of the Year

Unity Music Festival committee names Vanessa Spendelow as the 2024 Volunteer of the Year.
Vanessa Spendelow was named Volunteer of the Year by the Unity Music Festival Committee.

UNITY — It gives me great pleasure to introduce Vanessa Spendelow as our 2024 Volunteer of the Year.

Our honoured member was a welcome addition to the festival committee when she joined in 2015, first helping with the entry secretary duties and two years later took on the position of treasurer. This position is an important one, involving many hours of work. She has been busy this week preparing the scholarship awards; for each committee meeting, she prepares the treasurer’s report as well as those that need to be sent to head office. This all culminates in the final yearly reports which must be done carefully so we are compliant with the government’s requirements.

Vanessa started playing piano when she was seven years old; completing Grade 8 at only 14 years of age. She had only one teacher – Faye Huber — whom she credits for instilling in her the enjoyment of piano and music. Vanessa entered the festival at age eight and participated on and off until Grade 8 piano. But the festival was not the only place where Vanessa used her musical skills. She started playing for mass at age 12 with the encouragement of elementary teachers Nadine Keller and Tracy Benko. She owes a lot of her love of music to both as well.

Our Volunteer of the Year also contributed to the community by beginning to teach piano in 2001 and then in 2005 began the Music for Young Children Program. The love of music was infectious in the Spendelow household with son Dallas taking both piano and guitar. Daughter Kaybree attained Grade 8 piano and Level 6 voice. These musical talents were often enjoyed at the festival.

Vanessa, we appreciate all your efforts in ably serving on the festival committee as well as the many contributions you and your family have made to music in our community.