A word from our awards committee…




The Leacock Medal for Humour race is well under way. Five independent judges, from the east coast to the west coast of Canada, are reading and evaluating the 73 submissions for this year’s award. The finish line for their results is March 25. So far, these cold snowy days are making it easier to find reading time.

A Long List for great summer reading will be publicized from the top choices of each judge and the volunteer readers in Orillia.

On April 1, the five Short-listed Authors will be announced in the media. We encourage you to read these five books and determine which author you think will receive the Medal.

The 70th Leacock Medal for Humour winner will be announced with great fanfare and humour at a luncheon on April 30 (11:30–1:30) in the Hermitage Room of the Best Western Mariposa Inn in Orillia, Ontario. We would be honoured to have you come and join in the fun. Tickets, $26 for members, $30 for non-members, are available from Donnajean at 705-325-1757.


Memberships get you discounts on all Leacock Medal and Leacock Museum events. Membership prices are $25 for a single person and $35 for a family. You will also receive our Charitable Registration Number for tax purposes. To obtain your Membership card, mail your cheque (with return address) to Leacock Associates, P. O. Box 854, Orillia, ON L3V 6K8.

Important dates

March 23: Entry for Student Competition closes

April 1: Shortlist of top 5 entries announced

April 30: Luncheon announcing the winner of the Leacock Medal and $15,000 cash prize from TD Financial Group

June 5: Soiree for student winner

June 6: Gala dinner feting the Leacock Medal winner

My fabulous year

Dear Judith and Leacock Committee Members,

I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for my fabulous year. You maybe didn’t hear so much down east but things were happening here in the prairies. I did a ton of festivals (and still have more to come this season), interviews, and activities that I never would have had the opportunity to do without winning the Leacock. It made an incredible difference in my literary life. I still think fondly of my time in Orillia and all the kindness and welcome I felt there. I am so grateful for the work all of you do to make this award possible. I hope to go down in history as the only Co-op grocery store clerk to win the award. If another clerk submits a book, please discard it immediately.

Love and good thoughts to all.

Cassie Stocks
Author of Dance, Gladys, Dance
Winner of the 2013 Leacock Medal for Humour


Sad news

We are sad to learn long-time Leacock Associates board member Linda Crawford passed away this afternoon at Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital in Orillia, Ontario. Linda was a driving force in the organization for many years and played a huge role in organizing and making our annual gala dinners a success. Many of you may have obtained your tickets from her. Our condolences to all her friends and family.

Roster of Leacock winners to attend

We’ve just confirmed the following Leacock-winning and -shortlisted authors will be in attendance at the 2014 Leacock Medal gala dinner on June 7:

Bill Conall (2014) — The Promised Land
Trevor Cole (2011) — Practical Jean
Terry Fallis (2008) — The Best Laid Plans
Dan Needles (2003) — With Axe and Flask
John Levesque (1993) — Waiting for Aquarius
Joe Kertes (1989) — Winter Tulips
Jane Christmas (shortlisted 2014) — And Then There Were Nuns

Tickets are $65, available through Patti Page (pagepsj@sympatico.ca, 705 326-1357) and Manticore Books in Orillia. A cocktail reception, live entertainment, plus many laughs throughout the sumptuous gourmet meal means they will sell out soon — don’t miss out!

2014 Soiree

We kickstart our 2014 Leacock celebrations when we toast the winner of our student writing competition. This evening is our “Soiree” and is a FREE event that will be held at the Leacock home, on the grounds of the Leacock National Historic Museum, on Friday, June 6 at 8 pm. Fingers foods are provided, and there’s a cash bar. All are welcome!

The next day is our Gala Dinner for Bill Conall, the winner of the 2014 Leacock Medal for humour. Tickets are available through Patti Page (pagepsj@sympatico.ca, 705 326-1357) and, now, Manticore Books. They sell out quickly, so get yours soon. Saturday, June 7, Geneva Park, $65.

2014 Gala Dinner

The gala dinner celebrating the 2014 Leacock Medal winner Bill Conall and the shortlisted authors is at the Geneva Park Conference Centre Saturday, June 7. Cocktail reception 5:30, dinner 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $65 per person, available from Patti Page: email pagepsj@sympatico.ca or call 705 326-1357. All are welcome. Please join us! Note that tickets are sold out quickly.

2014 Leacock winner: Bill Conall

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Bill Conall wins 2014 Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour

Orillia, ON — The Promised Land: A Novel of Cape Breton, Bill Conall’s hilarious tale of hippies journeying to Cape Breton in the 1970s, has earned the East Coast author the 2014 Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour and a $15,000 cash prize.

The Stephen Leacock Associates, who award the medal annually, made the announcement today at the Best Western Mariposa Inn and Conference Centre in Orillia, Ontario, in front of an audience of authors, publishing industry representatives and media.

Conall’s sophomore novel was chosen by a panel of national judges as well as a committee of local readers.

Also on the shortlist for this year’s award were, listed alphabetically, Arthur Black’s Fifty Shades of Black, Jane Christmas’s And Then There Were Nuns: Adventures in a Cloistered Life, Wayne Johnston’s The Son of a Certain Woman and Steve Smith’s Red Green’s Beginner’s Guide to Women.

Last year, Saskatchewan author Cassie Stocks won the medal for her first novel, Dance, Gladys, Dance.

The Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour has been awarded since 1947 to honour the dean of Canadian humourists and to perpetuate comedic writing in Canada. Some of our finest writers — Pierre Berton, W.O. Mitchell, Mordecai Richler and Robertson Davies — have been recipients of the award over the past six decades. In addition to winning the silver medal, the winner receives a $15,000 cash prize, courtesy of TD Bank Financial Group, which will be presented at the annual Leacock Medal gala dinner to be held June 7, 2014, at Geneva Park, just outside of Orillia.


For information, contact:
Mike Hill
President, Stephen Leacock Associates


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