Wednesday Night #1305 – Examiner Story



Dedicated Wednesday Nighters celebrate 25 years
By Martin C. Barry

A quote by former CBS News president Fred Friendly helped mark the 25th anniversary of Wednesday Night. Describing the task faced by broadcast news reporters, Friendly — who is considered a towering figure in the history of journalism — once said that the job “is not to make up anybody’s mind, but to open minds and to make the agony of decision-making so intense you can escape only by thinking.”
In honour of the weekly news and current events salon’s first quarter-century, more than 100 guests dressed in formal wear attended a gala evening last Wednesday in the home where it has all taken place — at David and Diana Nicholson’s on Rosemount Avenue.
Among the invited were former Westmount mayor Peter Trent and his wife, Kathryn Stephenson, former Westmount city councillor Herbert Bercovitz, Louise Roy, chair of the Conseil des arts de Montréal, Montreal city councillor Helen Fotopoulos, former Liberal MP Eleni Bakopanos, CJAD entertainment editor John Moore, Michel Kelly-Gagnon, president of the Conseil du Patronat du Québec, and Canadian film producer Michael Kronish.
The Nicholsons’ son, Marc, flew in from his home in Singapore where he owns an advertising agency, and Fiona, their daughter, came from her home in Canmore, Alberta, where she is an organizational team-builder and coach.
Montreal lawyer Linda Julien, who is currently leading the Liberal Party of Canada’s search for women candidates, read out a message of congratulations sent by Liberal leader Stéphane Dion, who was a guest at Wednesday Night just prior to the Liberal convention last fall.
Roslyn Takeishi, founder of the Copeland St. James computer consultancy, performed an original song composed for the occasion, accompanied by Christopher van Soest on guitar.
Marc got a few laughs from the crowd with some of his revealing observations. He got some more a bit later when he embraced Trent in grand French tradition with a kiss on both sides of the face.
“I think I was 12 years old the first Wednesday Night,” he said. “Since then, I’ve lost my virginity. It wasn’t to a Wednesday Nighter, but it was to one of their daughters.
“We’ve actually watched this whole process unfold, and what is absolutely lovely is to see all of you come back and support us and celebrate it,” he added. “Because each one of you has made it the unbelievable success that it is today.”
Apart from the companionship and lively exchanges of information that have taken place over more than 1,300 Wednesdays, there have also been 39 marriages, according to David. The most recent took place last summer on July 14, added Diana.
While the focus was primarily on stock markets and investments when Wednesday Night was launched in 1982, gradually it has shifted elsewhere. “Many people come particularly when the market crashes,” he said.
“They want to know what’s going on. So we still do talk about the stock market. But we’re older and wiser and we want to talk about all kinds of things now … It’s become a lifestyle for us and for many of our friends.”

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