Admittedly, it’s been a while since my last message, and I felt it was time for another one to be written. I am forever hopeful that I can get these messages out every couple of months. Please take the time to read through this particular message as there are several exciting news items ready to be shared.
As most of you are aware, we have hired a new Provincial Coordinator as of November 25th, and her name is Dayna White. After an exhaustive recruitment process, one that was undertaken by several Board members, we were pleased to offer Dayna the position. Dayna has been hard at work adapting to her new role and we have been keeping her extremely busy. Please take a few moments out of your busy schedules to welcome Dayna into the fold of Alberta55 plus.
Our website has been undergoing some major construction work and has been basically shut down for several weeks at a time. We are very are close to bringing a resolve to the issues we have been experiencing. Our Membership Directors have been very patient during the downtime and have even had to resort to pen and paper (gasp) to stay on top of things. Rest assured, we will be up and running again soon.
On the Provincial Games front, I am extremely pleased to share with all of you that the Peace River/Grimshaw bid was vetted and selected as the community to host the 2021 Provincial Summer Games in the third week of August. We met with the Games Committee in February and took the opportunity to visit and inspect the various sites and venues that are planned for use. We were very impressed over all with what we saw and are very sure that the games are in good hands with the folks from the Peace River/Grimshaw area.
In staying with news about our Provincial Games, to date three communities have expressed their initial interest in hosting the Provincial Winter Games. I’m not going to jump the gun and say too much more as conversations and discussions are at there very early stages. Just know that we are actively pursuing any and all possibilities for a Winter Games host.
Recently, I was invited to attend a skiing event called the Alberta55 plus Open at Nakiska and I must say it was a very big success. There were skiers from six different zones and all age categories were represented. It is events like this that should remind us all that Alberta55 plus is for every Albertan regardless of what Zone they are from and what Zone is hosting the event. My belief is that we could benefit from more events like this. Events that are advertised as Alberta open events and all Alberta55 plus members are invited to participate. Congratulations to Zone 2 and Zone 3 for this unique initiative.
Changing gears a bit, most of you are aware that a recent government bill (Bill C-21) was passed and there is no doubt that this bill has had an impact on Alberta55 plus. It affects our access to certain grants that we have applied for in the past and used for our Provincial Games. We are not situated to continually lose access to grants and financial assistance from government sources. I have met with several Alberta MLA’s and will continue to do so on your behalf to ensure that seniors don’t become just another casualty in the financial woes of the province. Please feel free to engage your own local politicians and beat the drum for Alberta55 plus and all it stands for.
Your Executive Board has been hard at work over the past couple of months dealing with all things Alberta55 plus related. I am pleased to share with you that we have a Strategic Planning workshop scheduled for early June and our goal is to have a five-year strategic plan laid out that addresses all of our concerns about who we are and where are we headed. My plan is to share this strategy with all of you as it becomes available. If you have any thoughts, ideas, suggestions as to any of this, please send me a quick email and share them with me. It’s important for you to know that your voice means something. I like hearing (well, most of the time anyway) how we are doing and how we can improve.
On the Canada 55 Games news front there is a strong contingent of Alberta55 plus athletes and participants planning on attending. At last count, we were close to 650 Albertans making the trek to Kamloops, BC in August. Pat Covington is busy (extremely so) in getting all the registration packages together and getting Alberta ready to go. I would be remiss if I didn’t extend a HUGE thank-you to Pat for her tireless efforts regarding all things Canada 55 games related. If you’re speaking with her, please let her know that she is appreciated. Remember, if you’re planning on attending and competing in Kamloops, please consider purchasing an Alberta shirt and wear it proudly.
A reminder that our AGM is just around the corner and is scheduled to take place in Red Deer on Monday, May 4th, 2020. As is the usual, there will be elections taking place at this meeting and there are several positions that need filling. Currently, they are VP South, VP North, TD North, TD South, Secretary and Treasurer. If you are aware of anyone who might be interested in running for one of these positions or if you are interested, please send me a resume or letter of interest saying so. I believe we have some very talented and dedicated people out there across Alberta and we need them to step up and help by volunteering for a term or two on the Board. Is that you? Please consider this opportunity to get involved.
In closing, I will remind you, as I always do, that Alberta55 plus is alive and well. We have a strong, dedicated membership base that continues to support what we stand for. If we don’t take the stand that we are an active and viable association, then who will? We need to constantly remind any who will listen that we fully support an active and participatory lifestyle as is described in our mission statement. Please continue to “beat the drum” and do your best to promote who we are and what we are all about.
President Alberta 55 plus