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Last night the tea meeting and entertainment in connection with St. Stephen’s Church, arrangements for which have been in progress for some time past, was held, and was an unqualified success, thanks to the energy of the Rev. Mr. Paige, and the aid given to him by the mainstay of everj' church—the ladies. About five o’clock the doors of the Town Hall were opened to the guests, and a most inviting scene presented itself, of laid tables, laden with masterstrokes of the genius of cook, confectioner, and pastrycook. If it is a pleasure to a purveyor, as it is said to be, to see his work demolished by those who relish the work of demolition, then the fair ones who presided at the tables yesterday afternoon must have enjoyed that pleasure to the full. We were not able to obtain tho names of all the ladies who graced the dispensation of the good things, but the following is as correct a list of the bevy of beauty as wa have been able to compile, viz., Mesdaraes G. D. Branson, Bruce, Bristow, Campbell, Curtis, Crisp, St. George Douglas. Fooks, Firth, Guinness, Gundry, Jacobson, Jameson, Paige, Purnell, Shury, Trevor, and Winter ; and Misses Cowper, Guinness, Johns, and Winter. After the table had been removed and the hall arranged for the entertainment, the Rev. W. E. Paige spoke as follows : Ladies and Gentlemen, So far as our task is ended, And you, we trust, are all contented With our efforts, for all have vied.

In friendly strife, and their best have

tried To cheer you first with strong bohea, Tarts, cakes, and beef, to let you see Their kindly wish to welcome all, Who’ve graced this pleasant carnival ; And now will charm with melody, Both “ sweet and low,” of song and glee. Your patient ears, doing their parts. To make the evening merry And long remembered in your hearts As a gathering of all degrees, Bach seeking the other to please,

And to assist in raising funds To satisfy our pressing duns For interest of money lent To build up St. Stephens, which we meant To duly pay off month by month, (Ah, fatal bond, for so it runn’th. Hard times, alas, have supevened, Therefore this gathering we convened To raise the needful. Thanks, then, friends, For your presence here ; it makes amends For anxious thoughts how to supply The very great deficiency, ’Tis partly done—we wish ’twas all.

Of minutes ten, an interval Is provided, when our Worthy Mayor Will undertake to do his share.

At auction cheap he’ll sell you all —At least, he’ll sell for you to buy — Sweeties, cakes, bouquets for t le ball, For bashful youths, who long and sigh For presents to the belles to give, Whose glances pierce them like a The cause is good, don’t grudge your tin, And you’ve our wishes them to win. And now, kind audience, greet, I pray With hearty cheer, The ladies dear, Who did provide our tea to-day. Of the songs, please clap with a will, Till they’re sung be patient and still. Let no rude boy whistle, cat-call, or hiss, For these, I’m afraid, will be taken amiss. Thanking you all, I make my bow, And the entertainment shall now

Begin with “ Friendship,” and I ween, We’ll end it with “ God Save the Queen.” The rhyming speech having been wed received, the entertainment was proceeded with, a pause being made to allow the Mayor to “ knock down ” the surplusage of good things to the highest bidders. The financial results of the evening, all told, are very satisfactory. The quality of the vocal and instrumental music provided was above the usual standard at these meetings, and the choir are deserving of all praise for the manner in which they rendered the glees. The first, ‘ 1 Friendship,” by the choir, was a gem, the voices harmonising well, and the accompaniment being simply perfect. A duet by the Misses Gates, “ Light in the East is glowing,” was admired by the audience, if we may judge by the applause. A song, “My Grandfather’s Clock,” by Mr. Harrison, accompained by the choir, elicited applause, and a duet by Mrs. Wood and Miss Kidd, “ Marche des Flambeau ” was played in an artistic manner. Mr. R. H. Pratt sang “My Old Friend John” in his usual taking style, and was followed by Mrs. Campbell, who delighted her hearers with the ever popular “Kate O’Shane.” The choir then sang the “ Angelas” from Maritana in a style which would have done credit to choirs of greater pretensions. The Misses Gates \v«;o again in requisition, and “ The Flower Girl” elicited a well-merited round of applause. A set of waltzes (a duet) by Mrs. Paige and Miss Johns was the next item, followed by a recitation by Mr. Jacobson. Mr. Harrison’s song, “I’ve Nothing Else to Do,” was sung remarkably well, and the National Anthem closed the proceedings, Mrs. Paige deservedly being thanked for presiding at the piano.

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Bibliographic details

ST. STEPHEN'S TEA MEETING., Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 27, 27 November 1879

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ST. STEPHEN'S TEA MEETING. Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 27, 27 November 1879

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