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Three blooms for Elk Point in Alberta CiB competition

The results are in, and Elk Point has received a Three Bloom rating in the Novice Non-Competitive level of Alberta Recreation and Parks Association’s Alberta edition of the Communities in Bloom Program.
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Elk Point was in full bloom on Aug. 2, as Sue Campbell (centre) outlined the origins and opportunities of Elk Point’s first-ever community gardens for Communities in Bloom judges Sharon Miller (right) and Marlene Aubrey. / Vicki Brooker photo

ELK POINT – The results are in, and Elk Point has received a Three Bloom rating in the Novice Non-Competitive level of Alberta Recreation and Parks Association’s Alberta edition of the Communities in Bloom Program.

“We are excited to have received the evaluation,” Elk Point and District Chamber of Commerce president and Economic Development Committee chair Terri Hampson said of the placing. “The Elk Point Economic Development Committee is proud to be heading up this initiative, working in partnership with the Town of Elk Point.”

But “squeaking in” with the three-bloom rating is only a start for the group, she emphasized. “I believe this is a great starting point on creating a solid direction on moving forward in our committee mandate of improving the community, livability, and quality of life in our region. It will be important in the coming months for us to create a plan to have all partners, community, and residents come together and make an intentional effort to work on the recommendations given with a chance to improve our 'Bloom' rating for the competitive entry class we will move into next year within the CiB program.”

With weeks and months of preparation last spring and summer before the CiB judging team arrived, Hampson credited the committee with "A great job thus far of getting through the first year of judging and showing off just how great our community is.”

More than 20 individuals, from MLA Scott Cyr, Mayor Parrish Tung and Deputy Mayor Tim Smereka to the town’s public works department, STEP Economic Development Officer Linda Sallstrom, Community Futures Penny Fox, 2nd Chance Trail Ride drivers and their helpers, realtor Shirley Harms, representatives of the Elk Point Historical Society, Community Gardens, Allied Arts and 4-H Beef Club all played a role during the Aug. 2 judges’ visit.

Elk Point was one of 26 Alberta communities involved in the program this year that were judged on community appearance, environmental action, heritage conservation, tree management, landscape and plant and floral displays. Athabasca was the winner in the Population 2,000 to 6,000 category with a five-bloom rating, Sexsmith a close second with four blooms, Bon Accord and Didsbury topped the 12 entries in the Friends - Evaluated category.

Twelve Alberta communities took part in the National CiB competition, with the City of Cold Lake winning the National and International award for communities with a population up to 20,000, while Wood Buffalo, Bruderheim and Strathcona County won outstanding achievement awards in the National and International competition, where winners were announced Sept. 30.


About the Author: Vicki Brooker

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