Remember that movie with Steve Martin where he jumps around yelling “The new phone book is here, the new phone book is here”? Possibly not, as it wasn’t an epic film to begin with but we are almost at the same point except we would be yelling Leisure Guide instead of phone book. (Somewhat coincidentally, the other day I thought I saw some new phone books out as well…)
The Winter 2017 Leisure Guide is currently online at www.RDCK.ca and you should have seen it in your mailbox by now unless of course you have a no flyers caveat on your mail delivery. Don’t despair, all is not lost; you can still drop by and pick one up at the Community Complex while supplies last. Inside, there is a variety of programming and events that will make winter fly by just as fast as summer did. I know it’s tough to start thinking about life after Christmas just yet but heads up – many of the programs fill up fast beginning on the registration start date of December 5th.
As usual, there are 32 pages of goodness in the Guide with programs for babies to seniors and everything in between. Our programmers seem to always come up with some new and exciting additions each time whether it is in general recreation, fitness or aquatics not to mention special events and covering off Pro-D days and spring break. I have often wondered how many people have taught or supervised programs or events for us over the past three or four decades; I know it would fill a few pages and you might be surprised who is on that list.
As mentioned in my last column, we hosted the Skatepark/Park Upgrade Open House a week ago and while we are still assessing the input and comments, I was really impressed at the excellent feedback we received from both skaters and general public. Once we examine the results, we will provide an update in future communications but what stood out the most for me was the passion and buy-in from a small but well informed group of past and future users. One of the earliest comments overheard from a group of teens as they came in the room and got a first glimpse of the design drawings was “Hey, they listened to us!” Surprising, but it shouldn’t be, as that is kind of how the process should work and how it did work for the Community Complex Enhancement Project.
There was also representation from the very young, entry level riders to the elder veterans (when I say elder, that is probably still a couple decades younger than me) and as well, there were parents advocating for their children but with the capacity to consider the benefit to the entire community. While I thought I had a reasonable grasp of skatepark lingo and terms, Jim Barnum from Spectrum Skateparks then entered into a back and forth discussion with the group using a whole new set of terms and descriptors while they nodded sagely and added comments. Meanwhile it was like Stephan Hawking was trying to explain Quantum Mechanics to me but the important thing is that those kids were on the same plane of language as him. Mark van der Zalm also did an excellent job of explaining the surrounding park and features including making notes on all the comments or suggestions that came out of meeting community members. Stay tuned for future updates.