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Popular picnic known for its seapie takes place Sunday

Astorville is preparing for its annual community picnic
20180809 astorville seapie Tim Foster, Leo Rancour and William Ball
Astorville picnic. Will Ball, Tim Foster and Leo Rancourt making the cipaille in the outdoor wood ovens. The photos were taken by Carmen Weiskopf.

It's been going strong since the early thirties, and it's not showing any signs of slowing down.

Astorville’s annual picnic, hosted by the Saint Thomas d’Aquin parish, will feed hungry picnic-lovers this Sunday at the East Ferris Community Centre.

The event is a point of pride for the village with a menu consisting of traditional French Canadian food such as seapie and baked beans.

“This picnic is steeped in tradition, and to keep with tradition, we cook the baked beans and seapie in the village’s wood-fired outdoor ovens,” says Tim Foster, Deacon of the Saint Thomas d’Aquin church and picnic co-organizer. “I’m sure most can agree that nothing beats food cooked on an open flame, especially when it’s made with care.”

Seapie, also known as cipaille in French, is a large, one-pot dinner made in a Dutch oven that has layers of meat, vegetables, and spices which is separated by layers of pastry. The dish is topped with one final layer of pastry and is cooked slowly for optimal flavour.

“We begin to cook the seapie and baked beans on the eve of the picnic, and it cooks slow and steady all night,” explains Foster. “Every year residents know it’s picnic time because you can smell the food across the village!"

You should arrive early as this is a very popular event.

The fun and games begin at 1:30 p.m. in the air-conditioned Community Centre at 1267 Village Road with bingo, games of chance, $1,000 in prizes, and children’s games.

Dinner will begin at 3:30 p.m. and take-out options are available beginning at 5.

Dinner is $14 for adults and $6 for children 12 and under.


Jeff Turl

About the Author: Jeff Turl

Jeff is a veteran of the news biz. He's spent a lengthy career in TV, radio, print and online, covering both news and sports. He enjoys free time riding motorcycles and spoiling grandchildren.
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