September -- the transition month.
School is back in session, an election campaign is underway, the Rebels are back on the ice and the weather is slowly, but surely changing.
This month's look-back will be somewhat less personal than previous editions given that I was out of the province for almost half of it -- nonetheless, let's dive in.
1. On the first day of school in Red Deer, local Mounties handed out 17 tickets to drivers who were caught speeding in school and playground zones. If you ain't down with speed limits, I got two words for ya............... be better.
2. My hat is off to city council who agreed to advocate for changes to the Municipal Government Act which would allow the City to more efficiently deal with derelict properties. Google the 'broken window theory.'
3. He's in the middle of an election right now, but early on in September, Michael Dawe announced he was retiring from his role as City historian. If you ever need to know why a street or building is called something, ask Michael Dawe.
4. Uber sure has a way of grabbing headlines. It did just that, launching in Red Deer in September. Have you tried it yet?
5. What more can be said about the new access for all barrier free playground at Mattie McCullough? A simply amazing feat of community spirit and tale of kind-hearted kids looking out for a friend.
6. By most accounts, attendance was pretty good at the hospital rally held at the Memorial Centre. Do you feel it made a difference?
7. Three words: I believe you.
8. There are two central Alberta mayors who deserve congratulations: the first is Melodie Stol who is stepping away from Blackfalds town council after 19 years. It takes a tremendous amount of dedication to be a councillor or mayor for even one term. The other is Sean McIntyre in Sylvan Lake who has been acclaimed for another term as mayor.
9. After thousands of trees were knocked down in June (yeah, we're still talking about it), the City planted 1100 new ones in Oriole Park...which is pretty cool.
10. If you've never met Kath Hoffman who runs Safe Harbour Society downtown, let me tell you how passionate she is about helping our city's most vulnerable -- extremely.
11. Credit to my co-worker Ryan Simmons on this one for pointing it out -- and not that the hog truck roundabout rollover was a good thing -- but can you imagine if we had a modern day Francis the Pig incident?
13. You've got to have something really wrong with you to think it's okay to ram a police cruiser -- especially with one of our city's finest in the car.
14. Red Deer is losing a loud voice on a lot of issues, especially the environment, with Paul Harris not seeking re-election. In my three years covering council, no one has presented bolder environmental ideas than Harris. I challenge someone new to council to take up that mantle.
15. Now is the time -- if it's something you care about -- to join the conversation on abuse of older adults.
16. Diversity (or DYEversity) shone brightly at Lindsay Thurber once again. There's no doubt in my mind the incident last May was an anomaly as it relates to the inclusiveness and welcoming environment of Red Deer schools.
17. If you've never been to Ronald McDonald House in Red Deer or heard about what you can do to help out there, please contact them. Kudos to Curtis Glencross and his annual rodeo event for raising $190,000 for RMH and the Hockey Alberta Foundation.
18. It's not been an easy go for the new United Conservative Party nor for its leadership candidates who've faced scrutiny at every turn. Brian Jean recently used the word 'retarded' during a one-on-one interview with rdnewsNOW's Laine Mitchell in Drayton Valley. I've seen some people defend it and I've seen people call those who are offended 'snowflakes.' For me, I don't care how you use the 'R-word,' it's wrong. If you don't believe me, say it to the face of someone who has developmental challenges. Credit to Jean for apologizing, but he only did so after being called out by a good number of people.
19. Canadians of all backgrounds need to strive to better understand the atrocities of the past as it pertains to this country's first peoples. Use our stories on last week's grave marker unveiling and Orange Shirt Day as a starting point.
20. Election Day will be upon us in less than three weeks. For all of rdnewsNOW's coverage from around central Alberta, visit our election page. A full list of scheduled election forums in Red Deer can be found HERE.
My advice is simply for everyone to vote, but also to make an informed vote. Take the time to get to know the candidates -- find them at forums or at the farmers market and exercise your civic duty on October 16.
21. Don't forget rdnewsNOW is your go-to for Red Deer Rebels coverage. All games are broadcast LIVE on 106.7 The Drive. rdnewsNOW.com will have coverage of every game and much, much more throughout the season.
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