Saturday, September 28, 2013

Keeping Beiseker Open for Business

It is important that a community keep its businesses and industries vibrant and growing. 

Municipal government has a role in supporting projects which make local businesses attractive to residents and visitors.  And each of the recent promotional projects done in Beiseker over the past few years - like the Main Street beautification program, the new business signs, and the highway signs - have been supported by Village Council.

A strong commercial Main Street is one of the keys to success for smaller communities like Beiseker. The large box stores, just a few kilometers to the west of our village, are a strong pull for consumers.  All of us on Village Council have worked towards the promotion of our Main Street as a shopping destination, too. 

I will continue to support projects which keep Beiseker's commercial and industrial community strong and growing, and encourage residents to shop locally.  I will do this;
  • by doing what I can to make building in Beiseker attractive.
  • by informing others through the trade and commercial media what industries and commercial entities are needed here.
  • by keeping commercial taxes as low as possible while ensuring that all services will not be compromised.
  • by staying appraised of all developments in both existing and future industrial and commercial prospects.
  • by working together with the commercial community (such as the Chamber of Commerce) to promote Beiseker.
Together, we can make Beiseker a shopping destination.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Beiseker's Election!

It's not official yet, but it looks like Beiseker will be having a municipal election this fall!

Today was Nomination Day and by my count more than five candidates submitted their nomination papers.  The list will not be official for twenty four hours.  During that time any candidate may remove his or her nomination.  I submitted my papers, which means I am one of the candidates for this election!

Sadly missing from the roster is Fred Walters, who decided some time ago not to seek re-election.  Fred's work on village council, especially in regards to recycling, the railway museum, and solid waste management was greatly appreciated.  Fred's boots will be hard to fill when the new council has its reorganizational meeting, at the end of October!

The election issues have yet to be disclosed by all the candidates, but mine are quite straight forward;
  1. Keeping Beiseker's industries and businesses vibrant and growing.
  2. The water problems;  getting storm water out of town and clean drinking water into town, both as economically and efficiently as possible.
  3. Keeping Beiseker's health, education, safety and social services attractive, effective -- and growing.
  4. Street and sidewalk upgrading: need I say more?
  5. Encouraging Beiseker's population to continue a slow but steady and well managed growth.
There are my FIVE.  I'll address each one on my blog in days to come.  I'm sure that some of my fellow candidates will have others, and I eagerly await their presentations.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Dust and Foxtails

Some of you have expressed concerns over the blowing dust and foxtails at our new Grasslands residential subdivision

The flooding in Southern Alberta this summer has caused setbacks for Grasslands.  I understand that contractors and suppliers who were supposed to work on Grasslands have had more pressing issues elsewhere in our province damaged by flood waters in June. 

Work will continue on our new subdivision into the fall.  I have been assured that the weeds will be tidied up this fall and measures to keep the open areas clear will be started in the spring.  The developer is just as anxious to see homes going up in Grasslands as we are!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Springbank's 2013 Fall Fair

Yesterday (September 7) I had the privilege of attending the 2013 Springbank Fall Fair at the Springbank Park For All Seasons.  Each year I bring in part of the grain display from Aggie Days to show the folks at the fair just where their flour comes from!

The weather was dastardly which kept the number of attendees low, but those who came had fun.  We were treated to entertainment by some young modern dancers, line dancers and a super hot band!  There was a fall produce, craft and baking competition and many other activities going on all day, as the weather permitted.

It was a great fun day in the community of Springbank!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The Upcoming Municipal Election

On Nomination Day - Monday, September 23, 2013 - between 10:00 a.m. and Noon, I will be filing my nomination papers to our Village Returning Officer to become a candidate in the upcoming Municipal Election.  My campaign will officially start on that same day.

I am looking forward to this election!  I believe I have much more to offer Beiseker, and I relish facing the challenges of the next four years on Village Council.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Beiseker's CPR Station is 100 Years Old!

I invite all of you to Beiseker's CPR Station Building, now housing the Village Offices and Museum, on Sunday, September 29, 2013 to celebrate that building's 100th anniversary. The celebration will go from 2 PM until 4 PM.

We'll have live music, refreshments, and activities for everyone there.

We will also have a very special unveiling during the celebration.  When you think of ranching in Alberta, your mind automatically goes to towns like Cochrane, Stavely,  or Longview.   Your picture in your mind the herds of cattle roaming the hills and valleys to the west of Calgary. You might be surprised to learn that some of Alberta's earliest ranches were located near our village, out here on the prairie. 

In order to recognise the historical significance of these early ranches the Beiseker Museum  Society has commissioned a mural picturing the early ranch days around here.

When the Canadian government opened up this area, then part of the Northwest Territories, they pictured huge ranches with thousands of cattle eating grass and getting fat.  The logic of the day was that since the Buffalo or North American Bison roamed this land for centuries, the cattle would do fine here too.  Nobody figured that  most of the Buffalo migrated south in the winter and came north with the spring.

Some years brought devastating losses to the ranchers as blizzards and bone chilling temperatures destroyed their herds.  In the early part of the last century the Canadian government and the CPR opened up the ranchlands around here to settlement and farmers . So ended the ranching days.

The Elliott Ranch was located  east of  Beiseker and was eventually "closed off" as settlers and homesteaders moved in.  The Beiseker Museum Society has had created a mural to celebrate those early ranching days. 

The mural historically commemorates life on those early ranches over 110 years ago.  It will be unveiled at our CPR station celebrations on 29 September .

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Alberta's Team Rocket

One of North America's premier aerobatic teams is from right here in Alberta!

photo by Ray Courtman
Team Rocket pilots fliy the Harmon Rocket monoplane, an all metal home built monoplane based on the popular Van's Aircraft RV-4. The aircraft's lightweight and huge power gives it tremendous performance on the airshow stage.

To manage these two mighty mites of the air, I introduce to you Ken Fowler and Eric Hansen.  Ken grew up in BC, and joined Canada's military at an early age.  He toured North American airshows as a crew member for the big yellow DHC-5 Buffalo aircraft. I think it was then when he got hooked on airshows and airshow performing.  He is now airport manager at the Rocky Mountain House Airport and one of the pilots of Team Rocket.

Eric Hansen grew up in an aviation family and got his pilot's license at a very early age. He now is a flight instructor in his hometown of Cold Lake, Alberta. He is also a dentist there, and he is the other half of Team Rocket.

Ken and Eric perform very close together and very fast. Many of their maneuvers have them going head-to-head, crossing at airshow center stage!  This, by the way, includes their takeoff, when they begin their takeoff roll from either end of the runway!

Both Rockets look very similar in the sky but up close there are many differences inside and out. The easiest way to tell them apart is that Eric's aircraft has its rudder on the vertical stabilizer [tail] painted in a checkerboard pattern while Ken's aircraft's rudder has the logo of Rocky Mountain House emblazoned on it.

Probably one of the most spectacular performances Ken and Eric do is their night pyro show!  Picture two aircraft performing perfect synchronized aerobatic maneuvers at night with fireworks shooting out from racks mounted under the wings!   To my knowledge this is the only dual nighttime aerobatic show in existence.

As Albertans we all have to be proud of this home-grown talent.  Don't miss a chance to see them fly!