It was an excited crowd in Nelson that greeted Justin Trudeau and his two young children on Sunday afternoon.

Nelson gets caught up in the Trudeau cult

It was a political frenzy that seemed more fitting for a zealous small town crowd somewhere in the United States.

It was a political frenzy that seemed more fitting for a zealous small town crowd somewhere in the United States. More than 300 people came to Rotary Lakeside Park on a sticky Sunday afternoon to get a glimpse of one possible future for Canada.

When federal Liberal leader Justin Trudeau arrived via Streetcar #23 with his two young children, there was a buzz along the lake as the crowd brimmed with excitement. When he exited, the 41-year-old spent the next hour shaking hands, signing autographs and posing with adoring locals.

It was a cult of personality moment that’s rare in the Kootenays, a place where folks often scoff at these types of events. And though it likely paled in comparison to the Trudeau Mania Justin’s father Pierre created in the late-1960s, it was an evening that will not soon be forgotten.

There’s no denying that Justin Trudeau has plenty of political game. He’s well spoken, charming, good looking and grew up in Canadian political royalty. When you ask him a question, he looks you in the eye and answers like he really cares.

During the short media scrum, Trudeau spoke about going to visit the place where his younger brother Michel died in 1998. Tears welled up in his eyes, yet he never stumbled. He gave a genuine answer that was moving to even the most hardened local journalists. At that moment he appeared very human, something most politicians can’t easily pull off.

Trudeau and the Liberals have their work cut out for them leading up to 2015. In the Kootenays where voters have not sent a Liberal candidate to Ottawa since the early 1900s, the task for the party is even more daunting.

One of the most encouraging aspects of the Sunday gathering at Lakeside Park for local Liberal organizers was the number of young faces in the crowd. Children, teenagers, twenty-somethings and young families took time out of a gorgeous summer afternoon to engage in politics. And even though their interests might have been more personality than policy, this type of spark provides important building blocks to electoral success.

We’re a long way away from knowing whether Trudeau’s populist appeal will translate into ascension to Canada’s highest office, but he looks to be traveling on the right road.

 

 

Just Posted

VIDEO: Dramatic video shows return of rescued snowboarders

Two snowboarders found safe near Rossland, B.C.

Nelson bumps up cost of east Blewett fire service

The 20 per cent increase will amount to approximately $56 per year for a $400,000 home

Spike in vehicle thefts from remote parking lots

RCMP investigating a half dozen incidents

Judgment reserved in Nakusp school sex trial

Trial concluded today with lawyer’s summations

New Denver emergency ward to remain 24/7

Interior Health says it’s postponing changes to operating hours.

Testing the Google Arts & Culture app

Going face to face with art

Female goalie from Golden wins first Junior B game

Female goalie believed to be league’s first to play a full game and win

Nelson Leafs lose to Nitehawks on last-minute goal

The game was played to finish a postponed contest in December

CBT to provide 100 new child care spaces

Nelson Waldorf School is also getting money for a roof

Leafs down Border Bruins in penalty-filled game

Logan Wullum stole the show for Nelson in the 4-1 win

SKI TIPS: The key to skiing in heavy powder

Whitewater Ski Team coach Dylan Henderson shows how to navigate powder with ease

Leafs’ five-game winning streak snapped by Nitehawks

Nelson fell 4-1 on the first of three straight games this weekend

The book club master

Nelson’s Hazel Mousley takes book clubs to the next level

Glacier freezes competition in Spokane

The gymnastics club returned home with 35 medals

Most Read