How This Group of Ukelele Players is Making People Smile

Boasting more than 100 ukelele-playing members, the Niagara-on-the-Lake Ukesters spread good cheer and goodwill throughout the region.

Niagara-on-the-Lake UkestersPhoto: Courtesy Debbie Wright

Meet the Niagara-on-the-Lake Ukesters!

In 2014, I went on a Hawaiian cruise and learned how to play the ukulele. When I got home, I joined a wonderful local club: the Niagara-on-the-Lake Ukesters.

Back then, there were a dozen or so regulars who showed up every Sunday to play. The Ukesters are such a welcoming group, however, that we now have more than 100 members, and on average about 50 to 60 people show up on Sundays. We also perform at parties, children’s-program activities and retirement homes. No matter the venue, all money raised goes to charity.

One year, we bought ukuleles for a school in Grimsby, Ontario. Another year, we donated to Pelham Cares, a non-profit, volunteer-supported organization that helps residents of Pelham, Ontario, maintain their health, independence and community involvement through a variety of free services.

In 2018, the Niagara-on-the-Lake Ukesters chose to support the Red Roof Retreat. At our annual holiday party, our organizers Diana and Alan Ash presented a donation in the amount of $1,000 to Steffanie Bjorgan, Red Roof Retreat’s founder and executive director.

The retreat provides quality respite and recreational programs to children, youth and young adults with special needs in the Niagara Region.

The fun and assistance for local causes is sure to continue throughout 2019. The Ukesters are such a generous bunch, I’m glad I joined them!

For more information on the Niagara-on-the-Lake Ukesters, check out the group’s Facebook page.

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