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We managed to find funds for two winners again for 2013. As usual we announced the winners at Dressler house in the summer (see photo below right) and then the two winners were invited to our Gala on Friday night. We continue to be amazed and impressed with the level of talent in the Cobourg area - but we had to pick only two!

Maia Desjardins (at left) - Maia was home-schooled and on the Honour Roll for four years with the Virtual Learning Centre. She is attending the University of Guelph to work towards an honours degree, majoring in arts, studio art and history. Her main interest is in design and she's been mentored by renowned costume designer Suzanne Mess, who lives in Cobourg. Maia said she chose Guelph because it has a good visual arts program "which a lot of people don't know about. They also have beekeeping, so I might take that as well."

VFF Scholarship winners 2013She has appeared in her school's production of La Malade Imaginaire, Pygmalion, A Midsummer's Night Dream and traditional Japanese Noh and Kabuki theatre and Greek Comedy.

Maia is a volunteer at the Art Gallery of Ontario and also a member of their Youth Council. She is a member of the Youth Advisory for Port Hope's Critical Mass Centre for Contemporary Art, competes with the NORAC swim team and has part-time jobs at a local food store and at the Port Hope Library Mary J. Benson Branch. at her school.

2013 Remi Mireault (at right) - Remi, an Honours student at St. Mary Catholic Secondary School, is attending Montreal's Concordia University, where he's studying theatre arts – acting, playwriting, directing and design.

"Part of the reason I chose Concordia is that I know Quebec has its own theatre and its own film industry," he said. "Living in Montreal will help me become more fluent in French. If I'd gone to a Toronto school I might well have a foot in Toronto theatre, but I hope to have a foot in French theatre as well."

He's already appeared in more than 20 community theatre productions, been a member of La Jeunesse youth choir and the award-winning St. Mary Singers, and has been an extra in an ABC production of Happy Town.

Remi won the St. Mary Gold Triple A Award this year. He was also given a Government of Ontario Volunteer Services Award for his school activities, and the Town of Cobourg gave him a Civic Award for Arts and Academics. Remi also volunteers at the YMCA, at Big Brothers, Big Sisters and the United Way, at Trinity United Church, and the Shelter Valley Folk Festival. Additionally he's held down several part-time jobs.