Jayda Noyes, Daily Herald
“We don’t necessarily understand what joy is. We don’t understand how therapeutic it is, how much of a prescription it is.” – Tom Jackson
Actor, musician and activist Tom Jackson is making his way to the E.A. Rawlinson Centre on Monday for his cross-Canada tour, The Huron Carole.
It’s a tradition dating back 32 years, getting people into the holiday spirit with an evening of Christmas music and stories—but also the season of giving.
The tour is supporting local food banks and family service agencies during their 19 stops this year.
The Prince Albert Food Bank will be at the E.A. Rawlinson Centre for his show to collect donations.
Jackson’s advocacy stems back to when he was involved with Council Fire Native Culture Centre in Toronto, which had a history of being short of hampers over Christmas.
When he was 38-years-old, he lived in a hole in the ground in the downtown area there.
“They’re not always seen, hunger being a relatively silent disease. In these economic times, that’s more so now than it was. I’m not saying there’s more of it, but for sure more concerns,” he said.
Since the beginning, The Huron Carole has raised an estimated $200 million in cash and food donations.
Jackson said the purpose of the tour is to spread joy.
“We don’t necessarily understand what joy is. We don’t understand how therapeutic it is, how much of a prescription it is. Some times can be challenging, but joy is a viceless element of our world and it tends to lose value if you don’t share it,” he said.
He said performing in Prince Albert is “kind of like coming home.”
He’s from One Arrow First Nation, about an hour south of the city, and was born in the back of a buckboard on the way to a hospital in Prince Albert.
Jackson said he never imagined this as his reality.
“If you told me in 1987 that I’d be committing to a lifetime of producing Christmas shows across Canada, I would have been overwhelmed and may not have even started,” he said.
The show starts at 7:30 p.m. and tickets cost $47.78 plus a convenience fee.
They’re available online at www.earc.ca or at their box office.