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Cobourg throws a birthday party for a star

Cecilia Nasmith

By Cecilia Nasmith, Northumberland Today

Marie Dressler

Marie Dressler

COBOURG -- One of the items on Mayor Gil Brocanier's to-do list on Monday was to sign a proclamation declaring Nov. 9 Marie Dressler Celebration Day in Cobourg.

That task completed, Marie Dressler Foundation president and chair Rick Miller is issuing invitations for a 149th-birthday party that day in the Oscar-winning actress's honour.

One of Hollywood's most beloved actors, Dressler was born Nov. 9, 1868, at 212 King St. W. in Cobourg -- a building that is now an Ontario Heritage Site.

The Nov. 9 party will run from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Citizens' Forum, located on the second floor west at Victoria Hall (55 King St. W.).

The celebration will begin with the showing of a short documentary film made by the foundation and the University of Toronto Faculty of Information.

"The film shows the community engagement and enthusiasm in the creation of Marie Dressler Museum, Canada's newest interactive heritage museum, which opened in September last year in Marie Dressler House," Miller said in the press release.

He added that the foundation is a not-for-profit registered charity that, over the past 25 years, has engaged with the community by awarding bursaries to graduating secondary-school students pursuing studies in the performing arts.

Refreshments will include Marie Dressler Butter Tarts, created by Stephanie Harrington, the baker at the Dutch Oven.

Following the refreshment break, one of Marie Dressler's early silent films Tillie Wakes Up will be shown, with a running time of about 46 minutes.

"Plans are already underway for Marie Dressler 150 celebrations next year," Miller announced.

"Stay tuned to our website,, for updates."