Local Love Truro hosted a Women of Truro: Uncensored event at the end of March that saw five local business owners answer questions and offer insight about operating small businesses in the area. The panelist included, from left, Jane Gourley-Davis, a lawyer specializing in wills and real estate; Johanna Matthews, from Portraits by Johanna; Michelle McCann, of Bold and Italic Social Communications and Local Love Truro; Alicia Simms, of Rolling Sea Tattooery and Truro Buzz; and Andrea Munroe, owner of Enchanted Forest and Little Miss Fancy Plants. Submitted photo

TRURO – After a year’s hiatus, Local Love Truro is back with an even greater focus on community.

Michelle McCann and Sam Madore, founders of Local Love Truro, have made a few changes to the program, which shines a spotlight on the people, places, and happenings surrounding them.

“Our revamping of Local Love Truro relates to our awards,” said Madore. “We are partnering up with the Marigold Cultural Centre this year. Every year, the Marigold hosts a talent show around the same time, so it made the most sense to use to combine the two. It allows a focus on the entertainment piece – how many artists come from Truro, or how many artists are in Truro.”

In 2016, Local Love Truro saw 15 awards handed out in a variety of categories. There were 14 awards in 2017, before Madore and McCann took a year off.

This year, only five awards are up for grabs – Most Loved Place to Show off Truro; Truro Famous; Community Involvement; Most Loved Business; and Most Loved Event.

“We wanted to have a little more community involvement, and not have it just about businesses,” said Madore.

“Not that businesses aren’t doing great things,” added McCann.

Already this year, Local Love Truro has hosted some events. It kicked off with a screening of Cory Bowles’ award-winning film ‘Black Cop’ at the end of February. The end of March saw Women of Truro: Uncensored, a panel featuring women in business taking questions and answering them, offering insight into what it takes to own a small business in the area. Five women participated on the panel, including McCann, owner of Bold and Italic Social Communications; Jane Gourley-Davis, a lawyer specializing in wills and real estate; Johanna Matthews, from Portraits by Johanna; Andrea Munroe, owner of Enchanted Forest and Little Miss Fancy Plants; and Alicia Simms, who owns and operates Rolling Sea Tattooery and Truro Buzz. Madore was the panel’s moderator.

The awards will be given out on June 6. Local Love Live begins with a reception at 7 p.m. at the Marigold Cultural Centre. The award event begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at the Marigold’s box office.

The awards portion of Local Love Truro has two phases again this year. Nominations can be submitted up until April 22 for the awards. Nominations are done online at www.locallovetruro.ca. Prior to May 1, the top five nominations of each award category will be announced, with voting happening from May 1 to 22. Voting can be done both online or through a paper ballot found in the May edition of Hub Now.

Clay Café is once again creating the awards to be given out to the winners.

New this year, Madore and McCann launched the ‘Truro Famous’ t-shirts, which are available through pre-orders up until April 9. The shirts are $34.50 each. Local Love Truro is also hosting a pop-up shop for t-shirt orders on April 6, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., at My HOME Mercantile, located on Inglis Place.

On May 3, Local Love Truro will be supporting the artisan market at the Truro Farmers’ Market, and the following day, May 4, Local Love Truro is teaming up with the Downtown Truro Partnership for a support local day.

“It’s a day to promote shopping local after such a long winter,” said Madore.

The support local day is how Local Love Truro started back in 2015.

While events are only planned up until the live awards show in June, McCann and Madore are looking for more ways to celebrate community throughout the rest of the year.

“We’ve already gotten some great feedback about the Women of Truro: Uncensored event, and we plan to do more for other business people in the future,” said Madore. “And we want to bring back some of the events we’ve done in the past where we celebrated local authors and artists.”

“We want to focus on more year-round events,” McCann added. “We wanted things to work on for 12 months, instead of the awards over their couple-months span. Truro is looking for more events that aren’t the traditional business event.”

Madore says there’s enough local talent and opportunities in the area to present events year-round, and they’re also looking for suggestions from the community.

For more information or to nominate for the Local Love Truro awards, visit www.locallovetruro.ca.