Dunrobin fashion show highlights heroes

By Jake Davies - West Carleton Online

DUNROBIN – For Keenan Dressler, the fourth annual Dunrobin Community Association (DCA) Fashion Show was an opportunity to be the superhero he drew for his school yearbook earlier this year.

That was one of the amazing stories to come out of the fourth annual event hosted by the DCA’s Young Adults Program, unfolding on the outdoor catwalk at the Dunrobin Community Centre Saturday (June 17) afternoon.

A superhero walks the catwalk.
Keenan Kessler got to wear the superhero suit of the character he created thanks to seamstress Sharon Demers. Photo by Jake Davies, Illustration by Keenan Kessler

With the help of volunteer stylists, seamstresses, make-up artists, deejay, photographer, videographer and a very enthusiastic audience including Coun. Clarke Kelly and his young family, a record number 11 models walked the runway and had an amazing time.

“They did amazingly well.” Volunteer organizer Tracy Taffinder told West Carleton Online Wednesday (June 21). “It’s just so wonderful to see them being themselves.”

For Dressler, he also got to be his alter ego. Earlier this year Dressler drew a picture of a superhero. He submitted it to his school, and they included it in the yearbook. For this year’s fashion show, volunteer seamstress Sharon Demers “brought the costume to life,” and Dressler was able to wear it on the runway.

“We kept it a secret,” Taffinder said. “He was blown away.”

Tracy’s daughter Laura Taffinder is also a model and she got to rock the catwalk on her birthday (June 17). Emcee Saul Brown said Laura gave up having a birthday party to be at the event. Mom Tracy said it wasn’t a tough decision.

“It was a very easy decision,” Taffinder said. “She loves it.”

A model poses for a photo while another gets their face painted.
Ashley Innes poses for a photo while make-up artist Mari Dressler works on another model. Photo by Jake Davies

Last year the event transitioned in to a fundraiser for West Carleton Food Access (WCFAC). This year that tradition continued, with the fashion show raising $360 for the food bank and “two totes full of food.”

Taffinder says that outreach gives the models a big sense of pride.

“It’s just an enormous confidence builder for them,” Taffinder said. “This is their outreach program. They receive a lot of support for their programs we run for them. So, it’s nice they can give back in some ways.”

Taffinder says they also receive a lot of support to run the fashion show. Along with those already mentioned, Taffinder wanted to thank Top Rock Hair hairdresser Julie Joinette, make-up artist Mari Dressler, TRAPT dance troupe who provided entertainment during costume changes, and photographer Sherry Desjardins of Backroads Memory Photos.

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