October 24, 2014
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Wild West rides into Trudeau Center
Jennifer Rodrigues
TALLEST COWBOY IN THE WEST: Jay Brunelle entertains the audience at the Trudeau Center by singing “A Cowboy Song” while walking on stilts.

The Trudeau Center brought the West to Warwick last Friday with their first Country & Western Variety Show.

The Center hosts a large variety show for members and guests each year, but this was the first year with a country theme.

“I’ve observed that many of the members of the adult day program, their favorite type of music is country and western,” said Sally Gruber, a volunteer at the Trudeau Center who organized this year’s show.

Gruber took that theme and ran with it, finding 12 country acts from across the state willing to donate their time to perform for the crowd of over 100 people.

The Larkin Recreation Center, where the show was held, was transformed into a country western paradise, complete with bales of hay, horse saddles and cowboy hats everywhere you looked.

“I think the people were really enjoying the music and the theme,” said Gruber.

Gruber added that the staff of the Patterson building did decorations and some items such as saddles were on loan from East Greenwich’s Stepping Stone Ranch and North Kingstown’s Allie’s Tack Shop.

Donald Armstrong, president and CEO of the Trudeau Center, was happy to see such a large crowd enjoying themselves.

“We have folks from our Commonwealth Avenue facility, our work site partners program, and Trudeau Center members,” said Armstrong.

There were also a number of invited guests from the area and children from Trudeau’s Crayons day care program.

Gruber was happy to have provided a great event for the special individuals at Trudeau.

“Many of these individuals can’t drive independently. They couldn’t seek this type of entertainment on their own,” said Gruber.

And the crowd was certainly entertained. Almost everyone clapped along with the music, and some even sang if they knew the words. Professional dancers John and Dee Soares even encouraged audience members to get up and try a line dance with them.


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