The 5th annual East Coast Kitchen Party & Lobster Boil was held at the Edmonton Inn Saturday to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories.
The event started in 2015 to raise money after the mother of one of the hosts’ friend, May Cunningham, was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease two years prior.
Troy Hawes formed a team for the ProAm Face Off Against Alzheimer’s hockey tournament and the lobster boil was started to help raise more money and show appreciation to people who donated to the cause.
“The team was founded in May’s honor in the hopes that a group of friends could contribute to putting an end to Alzheimer’s by supporting the research being done here in Alberta,” said Lauren Hawes, the co-host of the lobster boil.
In 2021, May died and the Hawses’ were glad to be able to honor her and others who lost their battle with Alzheimer’s on Saturday.
“One of the things we talk about is that we’re making memories in memory of those that we love,” said Lauren Hawes.
“So although people with Alzheimer’s are losing their memories, we can honor them by having parties and events like this with a real family feel and we think that this really cherishes who they were in the world and adds to their legacy.”
Saturday was the first time the event was held since the start of the pandemic.
“We try to make it as authentic, I’m originally from Nova Scotia, as we can,” said Troy Hawes. “These lobsters we’re serving tonight were in the ocean three days ago.”
“There’s a real feeling of joy in the room and we’re just really excited to share this night with everybody,” added Lauren Hawes.
The first year the lobster boil was held, $8,000 was raised for the Alzheimer’s society. This year, the goal was $50,000 and they had raised around $20,000 as of Saturday morning.
In addition to the food, the event also featured live music and silent and live auctions with all of the proceeds going towards the Alzheimer’s Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories.