The Life and Times of Peter Blackmere

When Peter and his wife Carol relocated to Orangeville 10 years ago, his tax accounting business behind him, retirement had a rosy glow. Peter wanted nothing more to do with numbers and files, computers, and regulations. Peter’s life had always involved a wide variety of volunteer positions, the last being a full-time driver for Meals on Wheels. As luck often dictates, Peter and Carol moved into a home opposite our newly retired volunteer Hike Director, Les Babbage.

It wasn’t long before Les invited Peter to become a hiking member of the Dufferin Hi-Land Bruce Trail Club. With his outspoken humour and his organizational skills, Peter was soon put to work as the club’s new volunteer Special Events Coordinator. In the days before EventBrite and other online payment systems, Peter’s personal email filled with endless questions about the 1- and 2-day end-to-end fundraisers.

People wanted to know, “How do I register? Where do I mail my cheque? What if it rains? Will it be clearly marked? Will there be Hot Dogs?”

Finding himself a full-time volunteer, Peter—with Carol’s assistance—organized checkpoints, cheque deposits, more volunteers, buses, toilets, badges, and most important of all, the much-regaled snack tables with help from the famous four: “Barb, Ruth, Glenys and Elizabeth.

The work was physical and fun. The new friendships meant everything.

It is said that when Peter was presented with a problem that seemed larger than life, he’d diminish it with the retort, “It’s nothing but mice’s nuts.” Were all the world’s problems dealt with so effectively!

When the Treasurer stepped down from the Board, Les came knocking again at Peter’s door. Peter, however, had found another hobby. His love of woodworking was full-blown and had taken over the garage. He paused and replied. We are fortunate that Peter graciously accepted the role of Treasurer. His forward-thinking approach is reflected in the many ways the Club transacts payments and organizes our fundraising events today.

Thank you, Peter! We hope this time you really do get to retire!

3 thoughts on “The Life and Times of Peter Blackmere”

  1. I am sure you are receiving many accolades for your years of service – please add me to the list. Having worked with you for most of my twelve years as Trail Director and my three and half years as Newsletter Editor (along with the many times I seemed to be involved in publicity and promotion and the passing along of those bills), your expertise, professionalism and advice was always welcome. And your Board reports were always accurate and easy to understand.
    Treasurer is a bit of an unsung hero. It doesn’t have the “glamour” or recognition of some of the more frontline positions; but in a nonprofit organization affiliated with a parent charitable organization, proper accounts are vital.
    Thanks very much for doing such a great job.

  2. I heartily second Carl Tafel’s comments.
    In addition to Peter’s duties as treasurer, he also crafted and sold many wooden works of art, with
    the proceeds being donated to the BTC.
    Well done Peter !

  3. Peter was one of the first volunteers I met and I would often joke that Dufferin was my favourite club because the volunteers in this club really do make an impact. The hotdogs, the cream cheese and cucumber on rye and Tony handing out the badges – very impactful stuff! The last time I saw Peter was at Barb’s house and he had just come from preparing taxes that involved crypto. He explained it in such a way that actually allowed me to understand a little of what he was talking about. A little. He also had with him one of his wood carvings and I still plan to get to the part of the trail where these carvings are featured. Thank you Les for finding Peter and to all the other volunteers of Dufferin who make it such a great club to be a part of.


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