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SUMMER 2016

JAY RAYMUNDO IS ONE OF 10

Guys with COOL jobs Fas-cas dining

MEN WE ADMIRE ART BERGMANN’S FIRST ALBUM IN 20 YEARS

RENOVATIONS

FOR A CAUSE

5th generation

RANCHERS

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SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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GROUP PUBLISHER

Sherry Shaw-Froggatt

EDITOR

Anne Beaty

COPY EDITOR

Vanessa Peterelli

DESIGN MANAGER

Kim Williams

CONTRIBUTORS

Seline Badel-Wong, Melanie Beingessner, Sergei Belski, Alex Frazer-Harrison, Ellen Kelly, Kurtis Kristianson, Jeff MacKinnon, Brent Park, Vanessa Peterelli, Trent Pittner, Kristy Reimer, Leyla Riazi, Kent Rupert, Sherry Shaw-Froggatt, Wyatt Tremblay

ADVERTISING SALES

Wendy Pratt

PRINTING

Mitchell Press

DISTRIBUTION Sharie Tanner

CONTACT US EDITORIAL sherry@frogmediainc.ca ADVERTISING wendy@frogmediainc.ca

WHERE TO FIND US airdrielife is delivered to all homes in Airdrie and surrounding areas. If you do not receive an issue please contact sherry@frogmediainc.ca airdrielife is also available at more than 100 locations around the city. You can also find airdrielife in every showhome in the city and at more than 100 locations in Calgary. airdrielife is published quarterly by frog media inc. with the co-operation of the City of Airdrie Economic Development Department.

VOLUME 13, NUMBER 2

ISSN 1916-355X

Contents copyright 2016 by Frog Media Inc. may not be reproduced without permission. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for the contents of any advertisement, and all representations of warranties made in such advertising are those of the advertiser and not of the publisher.

(403) 948-9595

EDITORIAL POLICY airdrielife editorial is not for sale. Editorial is completely independent from advertising, and no special editorial consideration or commitment of any kind can form any part of the advertising agreement. All editorial inquiries must be directed toward the editor. A copy of frog media inc. Writers’ guidelines can be downloaded from the editorial page on our website. airdrielife does not accept unsolicited submissions. Freelance writers and photographers interested in assignments are asked to send an inquiry, with samples from at least three published magazine articles, to editorial@airdrielife.com

SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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E

editor’s note

very summer I look forward to learning more about some pretty cool men in our community. From mentors to musicians, from artists to athletes, our city boasts a whole lot of guys with great stories to tell.

I am always fascinated by the life journeys taken by our airdrielife subjects. I’ve often heard people say something along the lines of, “Oh, I’m not interesting, my life’s just average.” Then I find out that that modest person has volunteered for many years in all sorts of ways, has climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, has worked a full-time job while going to night school in order to pursue a higher education, has tirelessly lobbied for needed social change, has recently taken up skydiving … well, you get the idea. Everyone has a story, everyone’s life is worth celebrating, and we are so pleased to be able to do just that. Sharing with our readers the story of a passionate visionary who is following his dream (pg. 18) or a reno expert who donates his time and expertise to a worthy cause (pg. 34) or a business owner who cherishes each day and shares that philosophy with his employees (pg. 56) is what we’re all about. This issue, we’re also grateful to have had the help of our intern, Wyatt Tremblay, who is pursuing his own passion – writing. Wyatt has done a great job with the Men We Admire story, along with covering other assignments. Thanks, Wyatt, we really appreciate your hard work. And on a final note, this issue is also my last with airdrielife. After seven fabulous years, I am stepping down and taking some time to relax. I am very proud to have been able to be a part of airdrielife as it has grown and developed along with the community. I will very much miss the people with whom I work on a regular basis, from our fabulous writers and photographers to our incredible production team, the consummate professionals. I will miss the people and stories we profile. I will miss the smiles and laughs. But I won’t miss the last-minute 1 a.m. proofing! Anne Beaty, Editor

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SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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76 On the Cover

22

For Jay Raymundo, one of our Men We Admire, family comes first PHOTO BY KRISTY REIMER

74

46 SLICE OF LIFE

14 Music scene – Singer’s contributions continue

18 Light touch – Artist brings vision to life

22 App-etizing – Meals are fast, fresh

24 Finding herself – Makeover provides lift

HOME LIFE

COLUMNS & REGULAR FEATURES 28 Events

31 Healthylife with Melanie Beingessner 32 Parentlife with Vanessa Peterelli 40 Gardenlife with Brent Park 45 Homelife with Trent Pittner 54 Businesslife with Kent Rupert 59 Financiallife with Leyla Riazi

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34 Family-friendly – Reno will open doors

36 Sweet dreams – Spas provide home getaway

38 Airdrie roots – Townhomes offer choices

44 Great expectations – Duplexes impress

46 Building community – Development has many draws

48 Villa homes – Bungalow design appeals

WORK LIFE

56 Sound of silence – Unique business thrives

60 Cool jobs – Airdrians have fun

64 Smart cookies – Program proves popular

LOCAL LIFE

70 City taxes – Balancing community needs

71 Family values – Rodeo is part of life

74 Shooting stars – Archers take a bow

76 Salutations – Men deserve admiration


SUMMERTIME AND THE LIVING’S IN AIRDRIE

As the days get longer and warmer, we invite you to come discover all the ways Mattamy creates spaces and places people love to call home. We start with plenty of biking and walking trails to connect our neighbourhoods, giving you places to go and ways to get there.

In Southwinds, Osborne Park summons summer play with a shaded plaza and playground

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The Gates At Hillcrest allows you to choose from a variety of 2-Storey Townhomes with attached Garages, private Backyards and no condo fees. Many homes even offer adjacent walkouts to the community’s very own environmental reserve.

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SALES CENTRE HOURS Monday - Thursday 1 pm-8 pm; Friday 1 pm-6 pm; Saturday, Sunday and Holidays 11 am-6 pm All illustrations are artist’s concept. All dimensions are approximate. Prices, specifications, terms and conditions subject to change without notice. E.&O.E.

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*Listed prices are starting prices as of the date of publication and are inclusive of lot, GST and promotion, if available. Promotions available for a limited time and may vary by product, community and lot.Photos used may not reflect the actual final product. Terms and conditions subject to change without notice. Please see your Area Manager for detail. E. & O.E.


slice of life W H AT T O S E E , D O , E AT, L I ST E N T O A N D M O R E

14 Taking note • 18 Imagery • 24 New look


SLICE OF LIFE MUSICIAN PROFILE

Art Bergmann:

ICONOCLAST STORY BY ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON | PHOTO BY KURTIS KRISTIANSON

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“I wanted to write … not the overproduced stuff, but just great songs with spirit, delivery and great harmonies”

T

here are two words Art Bergmann often sees applied to him that he wishes writers would stop using. “I hate the term ‘punk veteran’ – it’s anathema to me,” says the musician. “And I’m trying to get the word ‘icon’ changed to ‘iconoclast.’” Still, it’s hard not to have respect for the longtime singer’s contributions to the Canadian music scene. In the 1970s, Bergmann led the Vancouver-based punk group Young Canadians before launching a solo career in the 1980s. Now 63, he lives just outside Airdrie and is about to release his first full-length album of new material in 20 years, The Apostate. “I’d had ideas for the album after a couple of decades of doing some serious reading, finding out why we are the way we are, and it’s my response to living in Alberta – I’ve been here about 10 years now,” says Bergmann. “I wanted to use myths and the idea that people talk about heritage and our [heritage] in the West is about 150 years … it’s my response to all that: politics, ancient ideas, fundamentalism … why we don’t get rid of some ideas that just linger on way past their due date.” After recording an album of acoustic remakes of past songs in 1999, Bergmann hooked up with the Weewerk label in 2014 to release a foursong mini-album called Songs for the Underclass. This led to some performances and, he says, “for a laugh” he entered a song contest through Calgary Folk Fest at the Ship & Anchor, where he played one of his new songs, Your Cold Appraising Eye. “I won and got $1,500, so I ran into the studio and recorded demos for the new album … that was a nice kick in the bum,” Bergmann says. Inspiration for the new songs came from several directions. The Greatest Story Never Told, for example, was inspired by a poem his wife wrote 25 years ago. On another track, the epic 12-minute Pioneers, he says that he wanted to go for “an almost spaghetti western kind of slow feel, to tell a story of the brutal conquering of the West, as I saw it. “I like to think beyond genre. I try to write songs and give the song the delivery it deserves – or doesn’t, as the case may be,” he adds. “I wanted to write … not the overproduced stuff, but just great songs with spirit, delivery and great harmonies.” Bergmann also looks internationally for his inspiration. “The song Mirage is inspired by the Tauric bands of Western Sahara,” he says. “I strive for happy accidents in picking what musicians I [use]. On Mirage, I asked (guitarist) Paul Rigby the day before if he played any of that Tauric stuff and he said no … the next morning, he was playing it! He said he remembered playing in an African band in Calgary when he was growing up.” Bergmann lives in a modest house on land near Airdrie. He moved out here, he says, because his wife’s granddaughter lives in Sylvan Lake and “we came out here to watch her grow up.” And now, Bergmann is getting ready to tour for the first time since the mid1990s, performing in centres such as Vancouver, Montreal and Toronto and hopefully with some dates locally, as well. His advice to up-and-coming musicians: “Get someone you trust to tell you if your stuff is good or not. I played a lot of crap when I was learning – but it was fun.” life – The Apostate is now available in digital form from iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon and Google, with the CD version out May 13

SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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o l l e H

For Her

SW Necklace, Pixie Mood bag, luc FoNtaiNe skirt, Micuha shoes, Lollia wish candle, luc FoNTaiNe shirt, Catherin Lillywhite scarf, Maybelline eyeshadow, OPI nail polish, Salted caramels (Made in Canada) and Lollia shower gel

Follow us on social media for the latest fashion arrivals every week! facebook.com/TheStoreUpstairs/


For Him

6 1 0 2

Flying Horse denim, whisky decanter, Bugatchi cufflinks, Jos Von Arx money clip, whisky stones, Blue Jays lanyard, DOVO straight razor, Vie-long shaving brush, Bluebeards beard brush, Bluebeards beard wash, Bugatchi necktie, Spitfire sunglasses, Venque messenger bag, Bugatchi dress shirt, Saxx Pro Elite, Calgary Flames mug.


SLICE OF LIFE ARTIST PROFILE

Sculptor Kirk Dunkley creates 3D light.

Cutting-Edge Artist STORY BY ELLEN KELLY | PHOTOS BY KURTIS KRISTIANSON

K

irk Dunkley grew up in the Airdrie area, attended Bert Church High School and credits his interest in art/sculpture to playing with Lego and “messing around” with tools in his mother’s folk art workshop. As a teenager, Dunkley was involved in a 4-H small engines club. A lifelong interest in building things has led to a calling to produce fine art pieces celebrated for their beauty and use of light. Dunkley’s parents offered support and encouragement. “The big drive from them was to pursue something out of passion and the rest will follow,” he says. “They taught me determination and that if I valued something enough I could make it work.”

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His first art professor at university, Ron Kostyniuk, recognized Dunkley’s potential and mentored him throughout his education. Dunkley admires work from the Russian constructivist movement in Europe; the work of light artist James Turrell has also been a huge influence. With a goal in mind and after spending several years pursuing post-secondary education, Dunkley says he is where he wants to be. He completed his master’s degree in visual fine arts and design in 2013. “My goal as a producer of things was to have the manufacturing skills and also the conceptual skills to be able to justify why I’m designing something in a certain way,” says the artist, who also strives to recognize niches for his work.


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SLICE OF LIFE ARTIST PROFILE

“Art sustains me, and I’m not talking financially. It sustains my drive and my intellect. It sustains my ability to comprehend and rationalize things that are happening.”

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At first Dunkley worked with metal but changed to plastics because they behave like metals, are accessible with woodcutting tools, are easier to machine and handle light beautifully. Plastic soon became his medium of choice. “I also like the transparency because it’s easy to project material onto them,” says Dunkley. Lately Dunkley has been working with dichroic film which, as the light passes through and depending on the angle of incidence or reflection, changes colour and makes the light dance around. “The sculptures are the same physical object but the light signature changes depending on how you are looking at it. It takes you out of the realm of the tangible object and places you in the realm of what’s happening with the light,” he says. “The sculpture goes from being a small, tangible thing to being a huge colour field of light all around the object.” Dunkley uses a laser cutter to cut his material into the shapes. “There is light involved in what I’m doing at every stage,” he says. His work, the artist says, is his hobby. His completed sculptures reveal something new and inspiring to him and he hopes they inspire others as well. “Art sustains me, and I’m not talking financially,” he says. “It sustains my drive and my intellect. It sustains my ability to comprehend and rationalize things that are happening.” Much of Dunkley’s work is commission-based. He produces sculptures for the university that are given as awards as well as sculptures to fill a specific space. He also makes intricate boxes to display his artwork. “A box represents something precious and when you open it, there’s that physical revelation of what is inside. Physical and conceptual notions of revelation are themes that I work on,” he says. Dunkley also works with students (together with teachers) at all grade levels who have difficulty grasping specific math concepts, helping to articulate the ideas through art. “I remember when I was a student,” he says. “A lot of the things I was doing in math made more sense if I thought about them in a tangible, physical dimension. Sculpture is a way to access that and it seems to work.” After living in Calgary for some time, Dunkley and his wife have returned to Airdrie. “I love Airdrie and how accessible everything is,” he says. “We’re minutes away from anything we could ever want here. I also like the walking paths and trails.” His advice to budding artists: “If you’re passionate about something, stick with it. Life is too short to be doing things you’re not happy with.” life Dunkley’s work can be seen at sigmasixdesign.com

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SLICE OF LIFE FOOD

The New B

Burger

Baron Abe’s creates the fas-cas dining experience STORY BY JEFF MACKINNON PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

ernie Levert is accustomed to seeing folks enter Abe’s Restaurant, walk right past the front counter and the giant menu, take a seat at a booth and start tapping on their phones. A few seconds later, when they put their phones down, the printer in his kitchen starts up. It makes Levert happy, knowing that his customers have ordered lunch using the app he created. Customers then get a text confirming their order and a few minutes after that a second text follows to say their burger, sandwich or salad is ready, made fresh. They don’t even have to talk to a single person if they so choose.  “I also see people waiting outside in their vehicles for their texts,” Levert says.  Orders take about 10 minutes, so in no time customers can get back to the business of the day, feeling good that they have had a fresh, tasty meal at fast-food speed. Abe’s Restaurant, located in Kingsview Heights, opened in March 2015 and quickly established itself as a go-to spot for fast-casual – or fas-cas – dining. Abe’s occupies the spot on the food chain between fast-food and casual fine dining. Levert’s food is all sourced locally and made in front of diners. “It’s not full service but you are sitting on good furniture, you get china and real cutlery and you’re not given a plastic bag for $15,” he says. “It’s that middle ground, so instead of paying $19 for your meal you’re paying $12 to $15.” The diner’s name is derived from William Aberhart High School in Calgary, where Levert’s initial restaurant was scheduled to open. Abe’s in Airdrie will be followed in a few months by another location in the Mahogany community in south Calgary. Levert has for a long time owned a restaurant management company in Calgary, which currently operates Nashville North at the Calgary Stampede. Abe’s is the first restaurant he has owned entirely by himself. Abe’s owner Bernie Levert takes pride in creating his signature fast, fresh food.

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MORTGAGE SOLUTIONS

The Airdrie restaurant is small at 35 seats. Customers can order at the counter or use the app (or if crowds aren’t your thing the menu can also be found at abesfood.ca, where you can order, pay and have food delivered to your residence). “You can come in here and have burgers and fries, which are very popular of course in this community and country,” Levert says. “We also have a great fresh bar and healthy options in here. You can come in here and have a great salad and smoothie. “Everything’s completely fresh. We don’t pull any punches. We don’t buy anything in bags or boxes,” adds the owner. “Everything is designed to come out fast. When you come in for lunch it’s not taking 40 minutes to get to you – it’s taking under 10.” Abe’s also carries gluten-free buns that can be substituted on any of the 12 burgers and sandwiches on the menu. The bun is isolated during preparation to make sure there is no cross-contamination. “We have a fryer that’s dedicated to gluten-free fries. Nothing touches it,” Levert explains. “We have a lot of gluten-free families who come in here and they know it’s safe. Because it’s an open kitchen they can watch us and make sure it’s safe.” A couple of the more popular items off the main menu are the Big Lion Burger (tower-stacked double beef burger, double cheddar cheese, onions, pickles, Abe’s sauce); and Skirt Steak Sandwich (thinly sliced seasoned flank steak, sautéed mushrooms, garlic-parsley aioli, lettuce, tomato, brioche bun). “We have guys who drive up from Calgary for that thing. That’s a meaty steak sandwich. There’s steak in that thing,” Levert says. Favourites from the fresh bar include Kale Power Salad (baby kale, romaine lettuce, cucumbers, grape tomatoes, seasonal beets, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, black chia seeds, hemp hearts, blueberries, pomegranate-lime vinaigrette) and Boston Cobb Salad (roasted chicken, cheddar cheese, maple-smoked bacon, hard-boiled egg, grape tomatoes, avocado, cucumber, crisp romaine lettuce, red wine vinaigrette). Abe’s is open every day from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Levert and his staff also serve breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. life

MORTGAGE SOLUTIONS

Purchases Refinances Debt Consolidation Rate Comparison

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SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE MAKEOVER

s ’ y d o J jive

What does it take to start winning when you are so used to losing? STORY BY SELINE BADEL-WONG | PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

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J

ody Cunningham can answer that question. As someone who has been through more unexpected and early loss than most, she has learned to persevere. Jody has lost several family members, most recently her beloved sister, to cancer. And since being diagnosed herself with the BRCA1 gene, the same genetic cancer link, she is rethinking her life and trying to reestablish her own goals. Jody is slowly finding new ways to rebuild her strength after caring for her ailing sister and continuing to care for both her sister’s two children and her own three children. Just getting out to shop with me at our sponsor location, CrossIron Mills, was a renewed experience for Jody that seemed to give her a little lift despite having a long road ahead with her own health. “Sometimes I find it hard to just get up and get out,” says Jody. “But there are things I want to do with my family ... and I want my children to learn resilience.” One of the things Jody looks forward to doing is getting healthy. She knows getting in shape will help her feel better and demonstrate to the children that health is important. When you are caring for others, as she has for many years, you tend to put yourself last. In honour of Jody getting herself healthy, and also as motivation, I put her in a stylish, bright workout outfit. This outfit from Addition Elle will cheer her on toward her fitness goals. The top is a vibrant peach colour and its slogan – “Stronger than most” – could be a mantra for Jody. The black workout leggings are flattering and comfortable and the shoes (from Winners) will add support to any workout she chooses, even going for a walk with the dogs and her family. Another goal for Jody is to take more family vacations and include her nieces, helping them feel they are a want, not a weight. “I lost my mother when I was 10 and I went to live with others … I know how it feels,” she says. “I want my nieces to feel like they are truly a part of our family, not just staying with us.” A colourful maxi dress from Reitmans was Jody’s pick for a great summer vacation dress and it will hopefully reignite a desire for a family trip to Kelowna this summer. The Boho-chic design is very fashionable right now but it is also carefree and comfortable for warm summer days and nights. I added a jadelike beaded necklace from Joe Fresh to complete the look. As goals and milestones go, this is a big one: the graduation of Jody’s eldest daughter from high

school this June. When we talk about what she wants in a dress for the occasion, the proud mom says she wants to be comfortable, stylish and happy at both the graduation ceremony and dinner. This dress from Laura caught my eye because of its pleasing lines. With a fitted bodice, it works hard at not adding extra width. There is a silk overlay with a romantic floral pattern, which is a big trend. The overlay also provides a nice, flowing coverage piece that makes it flattering on almost any body type and comfortable to wear because you won’t have to hold in your tummy all night long. To extend the flattery even more, another trick I teach Jody is to choose a nude pump or sandal that is a match to her own skin tone. This Nine West all-nude patent pump elongates the leg and appears to add height to Jody’s frame. I accessorize with a simple, black onyx necklace and a nude clutch so she can carry essentials for the day and evening. Finally, Jody admits that she needs to pay more attention to herself and learn to re-energize so she has more to give. For her, this means taking time out and reconnecting with friends. To help make that happen I put her in a pair of cropped denims from Addition Elle with today’s denim details – rips and tears in all the right places. The top, from Laura, is admittedly one she would have never thought to pick. As a personal stylist, I love it because the pattern cannot be identified as one thing; it is a collection of prints in neutral tones. This gives the top a longer life because it is easy to wear and cannot be recognized as one trend or another. As a button-down it has endless possibilities: wear it open, buttoned all the way up or partially buttoned with a tank top and jewelry. I put a white tank underneath (although you could easily use black or gray) to showcase the layered gold and black necklaces. I again opt for a nude shoe to add length to Jody’s legs and a more stylish, sophisticated feel to the outfit overall. In this, Jody is most certainly ready to go out and catch up with friends. Wendy at The Hair Lounge cuts Jody’s hair into a layered bob and deepens the colour with ultra-rich tones. On the day of the photo shoot Preet does Jody’s makeup and creates a winged-tip eye that enhances Jody’s own catlike eyes and colouring. Because Jody’s eyes are such a strong feature, Preet uses a softer lip and Jody looks beautiful but not overdone. Although hair, makeup and clothes cannot solve problems, as Jody puts it: “Feeling blah about myself wasn’t helping me get motivated.” I hope with all the things coming up in her life that this makeover has helped Jody feel motivated and has fuelled her for continued perseverance and success. life – Seline Badel-Wong is a personal stylist at thefashion-fix.com

SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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The LAST

20 lbs

CHALLENGE

Are you stuck in a fitness and diet rut? It’s time to change up your routine and enter the airdrielife Last 20 lbs Challenge! Our team of experts from Tri Fit Training and U Weight Loss will work right beside you for 12 weeks to help you reach your fitness goal. airdrielife readers will follow your final transformation and cheer you on all the way. Three contestants will each benefit from more than $2,000 in personal training and guidance.

The winning contestant will receive an additional $1,500 prize package. Enter now at airdrielife.com; deadline to qualify is July 20, 2016. Contest is open to Airdrie and area residents 18 years and older. Three contestants will be selected to compete from Sept. 6 to Nov. 28, 2016. Contestants must complete the full program and consent to full body length photography before, during and after the competition.

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SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE EVENTS

Summer’s here! MAY-AUGUST ART IN THE LIBRARY Airdrie Public Library Throughout the year, Airdrie Public Library (APL) plays host to local, regional and travelling art. Upcoming exhibits include: • May-June: Imagination Space by Brenna Miller • July-August: Odysseus, ASA Travelling Exhibit MAY 27-28 HAPHAZARDLY EVER AFTER Bert Church Theatre Presented by Nose Creek Players, magical fun awaits in this original, one-of-a-kind fractured fairy tale farce! A kind king and queen have trouble in their royal family – four obnoxious, bratty adult children who do not live up to their royal titles. The king and queen try everything to bring happiness and harmony to their family. They hire a royal therapist, bring in royal teachers and even try to marry off their children, all to no avail. Here’s hoping the Fairy Godmother can help! 7 p.m.

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MAY 28 5th ANNUAL BOYS AND GIRLS CLUB RACE FOR KIDS Boys and Girls Clubs across Canada participate in this national event raising funds for children and youth programs and services. This is an urban adventure race offering adults a chance to return to the best adventures of childhood, all while raising funds for kids to receive the support needed to realize their true potential. Teams of four will compete in a series of 10 challenging checkpoints in a race to the finish line. Checkpoints are designed to focus the mind and challenge the body in fun and zany ways. Post-event celebration and awards ceremony for participants. Registration opens 11 a.m.; start time 1 p.m.

JUNE 3 AIRDRIE AG SOCIETY FUNDRAISER Woodside Golf Course An evening of musical entertainment, featuring the Keister Family Fiddlers, hors d’oeuvres and a live auction. Tickets $50 per person; $350 per table of eight. 7:30-10 p.m. Details online.

JUNE 1-OCT. 5 AIRDRIE FARMERS MARKET Plainsmen Arena Open Wednesdays, 3:30-7 p.m., rain or shine. Offering something for everyone, including fresh produce; homemade perogies, sausage, bread and pies; handcrafted art and original quilts; natural soaps and lotions; and much more.

JUNE 18 AIRDRIE RELAY FOR LIFE Genesis Place Fun and inspiring for people of all ages and fitness levels, this 6-hour relay event challenges teams to fundraise and take turns walking or running around the track to show their support for people living with cancer. Food, music and tons of activities. 6 p.m.-12 a.m.

JUNE 2-SEPT. 29 CROSSFIELD FARMERS MARKET Banta Park (Crossfield) Open Thursdays, 3:30-7:30 p.m., this outdoor market focuses on fresh, local and handmade ingredients and products. Enjoy weekly entertainment and demos as well.

JUNE 5 MAYOR’S RECREATION FOR LIFE RUN AND WALK Sponsored by Propak Systems Ltd. 500-metre, 1-km, 3-km, 5-km and 10-km events timed electronically. Tot’s Toddle Race free for children six and under. 2016 addition: Clarke Family Run for Pulmonary Fibrosis. Details at airdriemayorsrun.com

JUNE 23 ARTEMBER CONCERT SERIES LAUNCH PARTY (Location TBD) Presented by Creative Airdrie, which will sell tickets to the ARTember concert series, distribute ARTember programs and host some giveaway draws. Details at creativeairdrie.ca


JUNE 28-JULY 2 ANNUAL AIRDRIE PRO RODEO Airdrie Rodeo Grounds Highlights include bareback and saddle bronc riding, steer wrestling, steer riding, team roping, barrel racing and bull riding. June 28-30: junior rodeo 6 p.m., pro rodeo 7 p.m. July 1: junior rodeo 2:30 p.m., pro rodeo 3:30 p.m. July 2: junior rodeo 5 p.m., pro rodeo 6 p.m. Enjoy music Thursday through Saturday; free children’s activities and trade fair all five days. JUNE 2 FOOD TRUCK FRENZY Plainsmen Arena Hosted by Airdrie Farmers Market, open for extended hours, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.

AUG. 6 AIRDRIE SUMMER CLASSIC CHARITY CAR SHOW & SHINE East Lake Park Family event presented by Time Travellers Car Club of Airdrie. Live retro band, food vendors, 50/50 draws, silent auction and more. All proceeds donated to local charities. No admission fee for spectators but a food bank donation is requested. For spectators the show runs 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Entry fee for show vehicles is $10; registration 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Rain date is Aug. 20.

AUG. 20-21 53rd ANNUAL AG SOCIETY FALL FAIR Plainsmen Arena Categories include vegetable and fruit growing, children’s crafts, baking, fine art and photography, fairy gardens and much more. If you have a hobby or pastime, chances are there’s a category to show off your talent. Exhibitors: dropoff is Aug 20, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.; public open house Aug. 21, 11 a.m.3:30 p.m.; awards at 3 p.m. Details at airdrieagsociety.com

AUG. 13 SUMMER FAMILY CARNIVAL Bethany Airdrie Barbecue, carnival treats and games, dunk tank, miniature horses and face-painting. Tickets for activities $5 and under. 12-4 p.m.

AUG. 26-27 6TH ANNUAL BIKES & BULLS CHARITY EVENT Airdrie Rodeo Grounds This community fundraiser is hosted by the Airdrie Oilmen’s Association, featuring a bike rally, concerts, pro bull riding and more.

JULY 1 CANADA DAY CELEBRATIONS Enjoy the Canada Day Parade down Main Street starting at 10 a.m. Fireworks festivities 2-11 p.m. at Chinook Winds Park, with food vendors, a monster truck show, live bands, family entertainment, magicians, henna, face-painting and a small market. Fireworks display at 10:45 p.m. JULY 1 CANADA DAY BARBECUE Airdrie Public Library Support the library and enjoy a fabulous meal from The Butcher Shoppe at this 13th annual event, after the parade. JULY 23 AIRDRIE AG SOCIETY RANCH HAND COMPETITION Airdrie Rodeo Grounds See firsthand the cattle-handling skills used by local area ranchers and farmers. Events include simulated branding, team sorting, team penning, simulated doctoring and trailer loading of cattle, and for the kids a calf scramble. 12-4:30 p.m. JULY 27 FOOD TRUCK FRENZY Plainsmen Arena Hosted by Airdrie Farmers Market, open for extended hours, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. AUG. 5-7 47th ANNUAL SHOW AND REUNION Pioneer Acres (Irricana) The museum’s main event of the year will feature virtually every piece of equipment running. Many outside exhibitors also bring displays, equipment, crafts, and much more. 2016 feature: Ford tractors and equipment

1 - 804 Main Street SE, Airdrie 403.912.7557 airdriespecsoptometry.ca SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

29


SLICE OF LIFE COLUMN

healthylife

Find your Hair that turns heads... ‘inner monkey’

WITH DR. MELANIE BEINGESSNER

O

ne of my favourite places in Airdrie is on the treadmill at Genesis Place overlooking the pool. I love to watch everyone having fun as I do my workout, especially the ‘monkey boys’ playing below, flipping off the side of the deep pool and off the diving board. We all have monkey boys in our lives, the boys who climb trees and jungle gyms, stretch and flip, jump and play and never sit still. As this airdrielife issue celebrates the men of Airdrie, I’d like to say that monkey boys have discovered an important secret in male mental health – the need to move your bodies to stimulate your brains. For those of us over 40, we played differently as children. We were allowed to go outside and find our own fun. We rode bikes and climbed trees and played kick the can for hours. Today, that lifestyle is just not possible, but one of the significant losses in society is that many boys today don’t move their bodies. TV, computers and PlayStations are the biggest reason why our boys are unhealthy and overweight, and I’d really like to take this opportunity to say: if you have a boy in your life, he needs to move his body every day. Physical movement is just as important for men. As a chiropractor, I treat men who are suffering from lack of movement. Many Airdrians commute at least one stressful hour every morning into Calgary to work eight hours a day in front of a computer, not moving much. After a hard day’s work, they drive an even more stressful hour home to eat supper and collapse in front of a TV screen until bedtime. Their whole day was spent sitting … and continual sitting is creating very significant health and posture problems in our adult population. While I do realize that we need to work to earn our living and that desk jobs are a big part of our lives, there are ways to help overcome the negative effects of sitting most of the day. Ensure you move your body throughout the day, join a gym and work out three times a week, swim on a regular basis, take up tai chi – these are a few of the ways to improve and keep your health. In the end, it’s up to you. If you are fit, keep up the good work. If your health is not where you’d like it to be, movement is the key to improved blood circulation, muscle tone, lung function, energy levels and sleep. Find your inner monkey and just have fun moving your body to improve your life. – Dr. Melanie Beingessner is a chiropractor and owner of Blessingways Family Wellness VISIT AIRDRIELIFE.COM FOR DR. BEINGESSNER’S TOP SIX WAYS TO FIND YOUR INNER MONKEY

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31


SLICE OF LIFE COLUMN

There is no “I” in team … or is there?

I

didn’t participate in many team activities as a child, but my belief in their importance strengthens with each passing day. Be it soccer, baseball, 4-H or robotics, team activities keep kids physically and/or mentally active and develop skills. But they also give children a valuable early opportunity to learn about themselves and others, to develop resilience and figure out how to navigate their way in a society where parentlife WITH VANESSA PETERELLI many different personalities exist. If your kids find themselves on a team of like-minded kids who gel and become best pals virtually overnight, great. If they come across teammates who are a bit harder to live with, better yet. Not everyone is born playing well with others, and teams represent a great cross-section of society. We adults know that a group of individuals working successfully together requires the development of certain ‘soft’ skills. What better way to teach our children how to build the resilience, mental

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strength, self-confidence, dependability, listening skills and empathy that life requires? Ideally, bolder children learn that they are part of a larger whole. Less confident children learn to come out of their shells and contribute to a group. A fairly seasoned soccer mom at this point, I can see my kids learning about discipline, focus and working hard toward a goal (literal or figurative), and making new friends along the way. But I also see them building confidence in social situations, realizing that wins come in many forms and learning to not let themselves get elbowed out of the play. (In my endeavour to raise polite children, I now find myself telling them it really is OK to “fight for the ball” on the soccer field, but that’s another story.) Teams are great sources for inspiration, insight, improvement, imagination and innovation. I guess there must be some room for “I” in team, after all. life


homelife

IDEAS AND ADVICE FOR YOUR HOME, INSIDE AND OUT

34 Community support • 36 In hot water • 48 Highest standards


HOME LIFE RENO RockCreek owner Brent Fraser’s work will make a world of difference to a special Airdrie family.

Reno for a Good Cause

EDITOR ’S NOTE: In the spring issue of airdrielife we shared the stor y of Addison and Kadence Foley. We are following their stor y with a new slant – the people who are changing the lives of these young girls through a home renovation.

STORY BY ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON PHOTO BY SERGEI BELSKI

“We want to get this done and get [the family] enjoying [the home] as soon as possible”

W

hen family and friends of an Airdrie mom whose two daughters are facing a rare disease put out the call for support to help them retrofit a new home, their neighbours jumped at the call. One leading the charge is Brent Fraser, owner of RockCreek Builders. RockCreek has been recruited to manage the project to retrofit an 1,870-square-foot bungalow in Woodside to meet the present and future needs of the Foley girls, Addison, 9, and Kadence, 12. The lively girls are fighting Friedreich’s ataxia (FA), a disease that damages the nervous system and impacts mobility. As a result, their mom, Shanna Leavitt, has to renovate the home to include a lift, ramps and other modifications for equipment. “We build new homes and do big renovation projects and commercial construction, so we understand all the bits and pieces that go into it, as well as accessibility, which we do more in commercial,” says Fraser. “[The family] wanted someone to take ownership of the project, to make sure it gets put together.” Fraser says that most of the work – which at press time was expected to begin at the end of April with an estimated three-month construction time frame – will be done with volunteers from the trades, with RockCreek itself doing its part gratis. “Just roll that money back into

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airdrielife.com | SUMMER 2016

a wheelchair or something – something to make it easier for the kids,” says Fraser. Although plans had yet to be finalized at time of interview, Fraser says that the work on the home is expected to be extensive. “There’s quite a bit to the outside and there’s a full basement development, the interior pretty much has to be gutted and reworked, the exterior has to have ramps and lifts,” he says. “There’ll be an elevator inside and a lift in the garage.” According to Fraser, the logistics of organizing volunteer labour are challenging, but, he says, “We want to get this done and get [the family] enjoying it as soon as possible. We’ve scheduled some pretty big jobs and tight time frames in the past. It’s a challenge and I’m always up for a challenge.” Although it is hoped that grants will cover some of the costs, a GoFundMe campaign, I’m Possible, has been set up to collect donations to not only cover additional costs, but also create a fund that will help with additional potential expenses down the line. For more information about Addison’s and Kadence’s story, FA and to donate, visit ampossible.org and to follow their journey, visit ampossibleblog.wordpress.com


Recharge your mind, body and soul.

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The backyard aaaah moment

HOME LIFE OUTDOOR LIVING

BY SHERRY SHAW-FROGGATT

Most people buying spas today are looking for a way to create a vacation in their own backyard. But spas are also excellent sources of therapeutic benefit and a tool for better sleep.

T

he last five years of my life have been hell. OK, that was drastic but it was the first time in 15 years we did not have a hot tub in our backyard. I have to admit, when you are used to a spa on your deck and you used it every day, living without one kind of sucks. That’s why I was so excited when my husband came home from volleyball one night and said, between slow shuffling steps, “That’s it … I want a hot tub again.” When we moved into our neighbourhood five years ago we instantly had the outdoor wiring put in place for an eventual hot tub, but we just never got around to it between deciding whether or not we would stay in the house for long, spending money on other projects and just life getting in the way. An aching body beat up from volleyball meant we were walking into Hot Water Pools & Spas in Airdrie back in March and standing in awe of just how much tubs have evolved. Owner Sarah Sperrin, who helped us navigate the new world of spas with ease, says that most people buying spas today are looking for a way to create a vacation in their own backyard. But, Sperrin reminded us, a spa is also an excellent source of therapeutic benefit and a tool for better sleep. Just 10 to 15 minutes per day in water temperatures between 36 C and 40 C can significantly improve your body’s co-ordination and flexibility. Sufferers of chronic arthritis especially benefit from hydrotherapy. We may not have arthritis yet but hey, pushing 50 means a few aches and pains that need a little TLC! Deciding on a tub means understanding how you will use it. Is it just for you and your sciatic nerve? Or it is meant to be a social gathering place for family and friends? Today’s seven- to eight-person spa takes up approximately an eight-foot-by-eight-foot space so you need to configure your deck space and allow room for easy access – not just for the

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airdrielife.com | SUMMER 2016

equipment but also for the jaunt from spa to door when it’s a beautiful, cold snowy night. Another simple thing is deciding which way the lid will open because if you invest in the hydraulic cover lifter, it creates a privacy wall when open. There are many options available for hot tub accessories and with consideration for space, mobility and the people in the home, and Sperrin helps determine what is needed to make it easy for jumping in. The number of jets is important to many but what I found more important is how easy they are to control. My husband prefers no jets; I prefer them pounding on my back and neck. Sperrin showed me how easy it was to control the two different pumps and then each individual jet to create my perfect spa corner as my husband relaxes in his. Some people think spa maintenance is too much work, but today’s chemicals are simple to use and even the testing kit has improved – a simple stick of paper dipped in the water shows all your PH and chlorine levels or try a digital tester. Hot Water Pools & Spas will test your water at no charge any time you bring it in to help you adjust the levels if necessary and provide a customized report of what to do each week. Don’t forget, simple maintenance means more time for relaxing. Once our tub was installed and the water prepped and heated to a lovely 40 C we were ready to spend even more time in our backyard. Under the stars, watching the sun set or waving at the early birds walking their dogs on the pathway. And, yes, letting go of the day’s stress by getting into a little hot water. And here is the best part of owning a hot tub: you get better quality family time – no phones, no TV, just the stars above and the people you enjoy the most close by. life Get tips on how to choose the right spa for you at airdrielife.com


Looking for investment and retirement advice? Talk to me today.

Carman Thiessen, CFP Financial Planner, Investment and Retirement Planning 403-462-7727 carman.thiessen@rbc.com

Chris Friesen, CFP Investment and Retirement Planner, Financial Planner 403-807-3010 chris.friesen@rbc.com

RBC Financial Planning is a business name used by Royal Mutual Funds Inc. (RMFI). Financial planning services and investment advice are provided by RMFI. RMFI, RBC Global Asset Management Inc., Royal Bank of Canada, Royal Trust Corporation of Canada and The Royal Trust Company are separate corporate entities which are affiliated. RMFI is licensed as a financial services firm in the province of Quebec. ® / ™ Trademark(s) of Royal Bank of Canada. © Royal Bank of Canada, 2015. 36425 (10/2015)

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37


GATES OPEN

HOME LIFE BUILDER PROFILE

“We’ve established some good roots in Airdrie and have a big commitment to the community” BY JEFF MACKINNON

M

attamy Homes has walked across the street from its popular Southwinds project to add a new townhome community that will suit a wide range of buyers. Mattamy’s manor townhomes – with the majority of the 159-unit The Gates at Hillcrest project representing a new product – are front-drive townhouses with rear yards. “It’s a larger townhome product that you don’t typically see in the market,” says Warren Saunders, Mattamy’s vice president of sales and marketing. “We are basically targeting those buyers [who] are either young couples starting out or downsizers [who] are looking at it as a transition type of home; or single adults who are living on their own or maybe with one child living at home still,” Saunders says. The Gates will offer 123 manor townhomes, with front-drive garages and backyards, while the remaining 36 will be village-style, back-to-back townhomes. Manor  square footages will range from 1,400 square feet to just under 1,700 sq. ft.  “To get that kind of square footage in a townhome is quite rare so we feel it’s a good fit for what’s needed in the market right now,” Saunders says. “Based on our research, this was something that we were told would be a good fit for that area.” The Gates launched in early April, presenting out of the company’s existing sales centre at 907 Windsong Drive. Mattamy has had an Airdrie presence since 2009, entering the market with Windsong and selling more than 1,000 homes in that community. “We had a lot of loyal customers [who] came from Windsong and have either referred someone or have moved from Windsong into

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airdrielife.com | SUMMER 2016

Southwinds, so we’ve established some good roots in Airdrie and have a big commitment to the community. That’s why we are continuing on with different homes in a different product segment there,” Saunders says. With The Gates, Mattamy is expected to continue its Value Assurance program that gives customers three choices of specification levels. “If you are looking at being at a specific price point and maybe on a first-time purchase and you … want to make sure your pricing is the best, then we have an option for that,” Saunders says. “If you are someone who wants a little more included in your home and expect certain things in the fit and finish of your home, then we have that as well.” Value Assurance allows Mattamy to appeal to a wider segment of buyers, he says. “But, in general, we want to make sure this community is a great value to people when they are looking for a townhouse,” Saunders says, “and it will definitely be positioned that way so people can continue to take advantage of a good-sized townhouse at a reasonable price.” The Gates will include an environmentally protected area in the southwest corner of the property and some walkout homes, which is not common for townhouses. “There will be a pathway system on one corner of the community, Saunders says, “and homeowners will have access to parks and amenities already located next door as well as amenities across the street in Southwinds. “It’s a very good location to access out to the mountains or into the city within 15 minutes with lots of new retail coming and shopping close by,” he adds. “It’s a great spot for [a] very good-valued townhome purchase.” life


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SUMMER IS HERE, AND IT IS TIME TO TURN ALL THE DREAMING YOU MAY HAVE DONE OVER WINTER INTO ACTION AND DECIDE WHAT NEW AND EXCITING TREES AND SHRUBS TO PLANT IN YOUR GARDEN. Whether you have a new house with a blank canvas of dirt to grow upon or are working with an established garden, it is important to remember these essential tips for a successful and vibrant yard. Most importantly, be sure to choose shrubs and trees that are appropriate for our growing zone, which in Canada ranges from 0 to 8 (with 0 being the coldest and 8 being the warmest). In Airdrie, we are safely classified as Zone 3, meaning any plant with a rating of 3 or less will grow here. Our company often has client requests for live material they may have seen on vacation on the west coast. While these are beautiful, most are not within our zone. Growing plants


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that are rated out of our zone is possible; however, this is a big challenge which may make these shrubs merely an overpriced annual instead of a long-term addition to your garden. It is also good practice to avoid buying large sizes. Although these larger specimens allow for instant privacy and give the illusion of a mature landscape, they tend to have more issues than those of a smaller size. Trees and shrubs have up to 70 per cent of their root system removed when they are harvested, leaving only 30 per cent of the roots to support 100 per cent of the tree. The bigger the tree, the harder the remaining roots need to work to support it, leading to a higher mortality rate. Smaller shrubs can survive much better on a smaller root base, tend to experience less transplant shock and show increased survivability.

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41


HOME LIFE DUPLEX PLAN

EXCELING IN STYLE! E

xcel Homes launched a new showhome in Midtown this spring called the Shelburne. At 1,985 square feet and a price point of $424,000, the Shelburne offers a lot of bang for the buck. With three bedrooms and 2.5 baths, this two-storey duplex features a double garage and walk-through mudroom to the kitchen, which sports bright white cabinets and built-in stainless steel wall appliances. The upstairs features vaulted ceilings, bonus room homework station and walkin laundry. The spacious master suite features a large master en suite with his and hers sinks, soaker tub and stand-alone tiled shower. The exterior is described as “modern country” with pitched roof lines and decorative batten used heavily on the front elevation to create an inviting look. David Zanini, Midtown area manager, says that the home has been popular, with people loving the functional layout and spacious open feeling – surprising for a duplex. Midtown is one of the last new developments that will be in the heart of Airdrie’s core. The amenities will include a developed storm water pond with an assortment of walking paths and trees. A small commercial development will make it easy to grab a coffee and fuel up the car. life

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HOME LIFE COLUMN

homelife

WITH TRENT PITTNER

H

IT’S NOT THAT BAD

old onto your hats, Airdrie, as our current market is, in my opinion, not as bad as the media is making it out to be. Real estate is similar to a roller coaster – there are ups and downs. Here’s something refreshing: this is the first update in 2016 where sales were up on an annual basis. Between April 1 and April 7, there was a 5.8 per cent increase in the number of sales. Reported conditional sales are currently down by 20 per cent, so I’m not expecting this to be the beginning of a sales resurgence. The most recent repetitive question I’ve been asked by clients, family and friends is, “Where do I need to price my home to get it sold?” The best answer I can give in this market is: “Price it aggressively.” Unfortunately, the March numbers were not flattering to an optimistic seller. Home sales were at the lowest March level since 2009. On a positive note, over the last three weeks in April we noticed an increase in sales activity in Airdrie. The $400,000 and lower price ranges were the driving force in the first quarter of 2016 and I suspect this will continue throughout the summer market. With that being said, sellers in the higher price ranges are starting to see more foot traffic as some homeowners are happy to take advantage of this buyers’ market and sell their starter homes to move into a more long-term investment. Historically it is very typical for inventory levels to climb in the spring market. Interest rates for prospective buyers are still very attractive. An April 7, 2016, update on interest rates provided a five-year fixed best rate of 2.49 per cent and a five-year adjustable rate of 2.35 per cent, which was quite appealing for the Airdrie home buyer or investor. Any sign of sustained recovery in the energy sector could result in a faster rebound in housing demand, as home buyers waiting for the rock bottom price may re-enter the market in the coming weeks and months of 2016. My advice is to take advantage of these low rates and ‘make a move up’ this summer. If we remain optimistic about investing in the Airdrie real estate market, our city will continue to be the fastest-growing community in Alberta, ensuring our largest investments hold strong. Let’s rally together, Airdrie, in hopes that greener grass will turn into greener pockets! – Trenton Pittner, Trentshomes, Legacy Real Estate Services

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SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

45


HOME LIFE DEVELOPER PROFILE

David Moore and Nikki Crawford are looking forward to the next phase of their lives in their new home in King’s Heights..

Coming full circle STORY BY ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON | PHOTO BY SERGEI BELSKI

W

hen David Moore and his fiancée, Nikki Crawford, decided to build a home in King’s Heights in southeast Airdrie, Moore had what he calls a “non-traditional” reason for choosing the community. “I’ve grown up in Airdrie and lived here almost my entire life,” says Moore, a teacher. “A few of my close friends also grew up in Airdrie and moved to King’s Heights, so I started the process so I could be close to my friends, so our kids could grow up together as we start the next phase of our lives.” Of course the community itself provided charms for Moore and Crawford, an engineer. The two were already living in a condo in King’s Heights before construction began on their new place by Shane Homes that will combine the upstairs from one Shane design with the downstairs from another. “We’re closer to Calgary – the commute is five to seven minutes shorter,” Moore says, adding that the area’s pathways and ponds and close proximity to retail also appealed. King’s Heights is about 75 per cent completed, says Catharina Mendonca, marketing manager for Melcor Developments, which took over laying out the community in 2005.

“For the most part, the amenities are in,” Mendonca says. This includes more than 10 kilometres of pathways linked to two amphitheatre areas and the ponds Moore and Crawford enjoy. A new public school – the K-7 Heloise Lorimer School – is set to open this fall, with another separate school site also set aside. The community is laid out in such a way that linear parks and pathways connect many homes directly to the school, Mendonca says. “Building a new home in a community where your children can walk to and from school without ever having to cross a road is a rare opportunity,” she says, adding that an additional large park area is planned. Kingsview Market, a major commercial hub adjacent to King’s Heights, has been “a big draw for residents,” says Mendonca. “Melcor has a strong vision for building communities where people can live, work, shop and play. With the new Save-On-Foods opening this fall, this commercial centre will have everything from grocery … to health services.” Looking ahead, Melcor has another neighbourhood planned east of King’s Heights. Dubbed Lanark, the new area is currently in the design phase, with a planned launch within the next couple of years, Mendonca says. life

“Building a new home in a community where your children can walk to and from school without ever having to cross a road is a rare opportunity” 46

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HOME LIFE SHOWHOMES

Luxury living and craftsmanship 48

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A

ugusta Fine Homes estate villas in Cooper’s Crossing  are designed to meet and exceed all of the most stringent architectural standards for the community while offering luxury living and true craftsmanship.  The companion bungalow has a unique exterior architectural character. From the impressive roof lines right down to the landscaping and exposed-aggregate front driveways, you’ll know you are in an estate neighbourhood. With the interiors, you’ll find stone counters throughout, premium appliance packages, luxury tile and hardwood. The homes also incorporate energy-savings products and features.  The Venturi companion bungalow (top photos) boasts 1,614 square feet on the main level with 1,283 sq. ft. of lower development.

The Jacklin companion bungalow (bottom photos) is 1,523 sq. ft. on the main level with 1,033 sq. ft. of lower development. Prices start at $870,000 for the Jacklin. The villas were designed for empty-nesters or executives who want to have the freedom of virtually no home maintenance. The bungalow style keeps all the well-used rooms to one floor for ease and convenience. These homes require little to no maintenance, and have quality products that leave you less to worry about. Landscaping is already provided and landscaping maintenance can be arranged by Augusta Fine Homes. Showhome location: 202 Cooper’s Cove, Cooper’s Crossing, Airdrie

SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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North to Crossfield

Midtown featuring Excel Homes & Shane Homes Coopers Crossing featuring McKee Homes, Vesta Homes, Lifestyle Homes and Augusta Fine Homes

King’s Heights featuring Shane Homes

Hillcrest featuring Excel Homes & Shane Homes Creekside Village by the Carlisle Group The Gates by Ma�amy

Out of Town

Crossfield: Vista Village featuring McKee Homes Reidbuilt Homes and Dream Homes.

builders and developers adver�sed in this issue.

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Celebrating 40 years as Airdrie’s #1 Source For Breaking News, Sports & What’s Happening in YOUR COMMUNITY!

Connect with us for breaking updates at

Follow Us on Twitter @Airdrie_Echo Like Us on Facebook @ Airdrie Echo www.airdrieecho.com 112 – 1st Avenue N.E. 403-948-7280 SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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worklife

MEET THE MOVERS, SHAKERS AND BUSINESS MAKERS

56 Acoustics • 60 Dreamworks • 64 Teaming up


WORK LIFE COLUMN

A sold out luncheon. A celebration of Airdrie women.

It was amazing!

businesslife

CREATE VISION IN A DOWNTURN

WITH KENT RUPERT Congrats to our 2016 Pharmasave airdrielife Amazing Airdrie Women recipients. From left; McKee Amazing Leadership Leona Esau, AWBA Amazing Promise Miranda Schmidt, Pharmasave Amazing Heart Michelle Bates, Hassett & Reid Amazing Determination Sylvia Schultz and Pureform Amazing Courage Christina Sackett-Toews.

“A downturn provides the opportunity to refocus, redefine and readjust to new realities, and better prepare for the future”

A special thank you to all our sponsors:

VISION: a concept that both businesses and residents alike probably use regularly. Where are we now? And where do we want to go? What is our real? Our ideal? As we move toward the future, are our practices aligning with that vision? It seems simple: a vision moves us forward – individually; collectively; as residents; as businesses; as a city, a province or a nation. Vision defines the steps in which to get there. However, how do we continue to have vision when

AWBA

confronted with the challenges of an economic downturn? In many cases over the past two years, the media has reported on hard-hitting stories including the 35,000 layoffs in the Alberta oil and gas sector, the increasing provincial debt load and an obvious polarization among Albertans. Un-

SUMMER FAMILY

Carnival at

Bethany Airdrie Saturday, August 13th 12pm-4pm

fortunately, the economic downturn has been the centre of attention of media for months now, providing a narrative of a dim future for Alberta, one that creates cloudiness around vision. So it comes to mind for me that in every challenge lies opportunity. The opportunity presents itself when we joined collectively as a community – businesses and residents – to continue to create a vision for a brighter future, even in the direst of economic times. As a City department, Economic Development recognizes the need to be a leader in creating vision in this downturn. Because of this, we have come together with multiple stakeholders and City departments to undertake a 10-year Integrated Economic Development Strategy. The strategy will create a long-term vision for our department and, in turn, the community. To combat the fatigue of ‘bad news’ related to the downturn, we began designing our strategy by asking five simple questions (Steven Ames, “The New Oregon Model: Envision – Plan – Achieve,” Journal of Future Studies, November 2010), which

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have helped us in creating a collective vision even in these challenging times. The questions are: Where are we now? Where are

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we going? Where do we want to be? How do we get there? Are we getting there?

• Entertainment & Raffle Prizes to be won!!! • Dunk Tank, Bouncy Castle • Miniature Horses • Face Painting & Balloon Twisting Art • Tickets for activities $5 & under

Funds raised at this carnival will go towards capital projects, equipment & programs benefiting the residents in Airdrie.

These five questions can be a useful tool for anyone. This simple concept can be used to help individuals and businesses wade through the realities of the downturn. It can assist in coming together to approach the downturn head on, to seek out new markets and new industries, to diversify, to create efficiencies and to find new ways of doing things. It can assist in finding new career passions, in accomplishing life goals and in creating a sense of place and an authentic identity. It can help identify a community’s shared beliefs and ideals, and define its preferred future. It can clarify gaps in services that are intended to move the vision forward. It can stir up innovation and entrepreneurship, creativity and social capital. Sure, it doesn’t take a downturn to ask these questions, but I think a downturn provides the opportunity to refocus, redefine and readjust to new realities, and better prepare for the future. This can be a time to awaken leadership qualities in a community, and to promote the need for active partnerships and open dialogue amongst governments, institutions, businesses, residents and non-profits. The concept is simple: a vision is something, collectively created and defined, that moves us forward. So, as a com-

Darren DePagie

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munity, where are we now? And how will our vision create a bigger, bolder and even better Airdrie?

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WORK LIFE GLOBAL FOCUS

Good Vibrations STORY BY ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON PHOTO BY SERGEI BELSKI

NOISE CONTROL AT THE HEART OF INNOVATIVE BUSINESS

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“It’s been an interesting business because it’s so unique and specialized … I started with one employee and it’s my baby, something I never knew would evolve into something like today”

I

Spring Air founder Jerry Anderson loves his job.

#morelife online

Watch

AirdrieNOW TV for an interview with Spring Air on airdrielife.com

t’s a well-known fact that noise and vibration go with industry like peanut butter goes with jelly, but for more than 30 years an Airdrie-based company has helped operators reduce this byproduct of doing business. Spring Air Industrial Acoustics opened its new building on Kingsview Boulevard in January 2015 after many years based out of Sharp Hill and in Calgary before that. Jerry Anderson says that he started Spring Air in 1984 as “mainly a vibration-control business … pumps, boilers, chillers, cooling covers, pretty much anything mechanical in office buildings, condos, fire stations, hospitals and schools. We isolate anything that’s mechanically driven so that vibration doesn’t go into the floor and ceiling.” Without this isolation, vibration could cause structural damage to buildings, and the noise could violate regulations and annoy neighbouring property owners. “I accidentally got into doing noise control on a gas compressor for a company up by Penhold, and we installed compressor cooler silencers because [they were] fairly close to a farmhouse. It quieted it, enough the acreage owner wasn’t complaining anymore,” says Anderson. The silencers installed by Spring Air can eliminate up to 100 per cent of high-frequency sound, he says, and can reduce low-frequency sound by as much as 30 decibels. With the move to Airdrie last year, the company added manufacturing of such products as acoustic panels, custom enclosures, silencers, building ventilation systems – basically “anything to do with absorbing industrial noise,” Anderson says of Spring Air Ltd., the company he started with Bob Clark under what is now the Spring Air Group of Companies (of which Anderson is chairman). “It’s fortunate that we diversified into manufacturing because now we’re doing a lot of

acoustic enclosures for portable power plants, and with oil and gas slowing down that has kept us going,” says Anderson, who has been in the noise-control industry for about 38 years. “We moved staff from Spring Air Industrial Acoustics to Spring Air Ltd. and didn’t have to lay anyone off.” Anderson currently has about 20 employees, having hired several since last fall (including his son, Kevin). “We’re still dealing with industrial and oil companies,” he says. “About 50 per cent of our business is now on the manufacturing, and we’re getting a lot of local people coming to us because we can manufacture pretty much anything that’s got to do with sheet metal, steel and that sort of thing. We didn’t have to lay anyone off during the real slow times and I think we were rewarded for that when some large contracts came in last fall.” Spring Air has done work in Oklahoma, Colorado, North Dakota and Ontario, and has even been involved in providing more than 100 acoustic panels for a power plant in Hawaii and helped build the fire hall in Iqaluit, Nunavut. “It’s been an interesting business because it’s so unique and specialized,” Anderson says of what he loves about the job. “I started with one employee and it’s my baby, something I never knew would evolve into something like today.” The business owner lost his first wife to a sudden brain aneurysm six years ago, and says that the experience gave him a new outlook on life. “In 15 minutes, she passed away, and I look at life differently now,” says Anderson, who has since remarried to a woman who had lost her husband. “When we have challenges and problems [at work], I say, “Nobody died today,” and that’s my outlook. I enjoy the sunrises and I enjoy the sunsets. “We’re so blessed: we have work and great employees,” he adds. “I love what I do.” life SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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financiallife

WITH LEYLA RIAZI

“Review your budget and determine what you want to achieve this year”

Organize your finances Eight simple steps are all it takes to get your finances organized this summer

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WORK LIFE COLUMN

1. Re-evaluate your budget. Review your budget and determine what you want to achieve this year. This helps track your spending and saving to reach financial goals. Online tools, such as BMO’s Manage My Finances, can help you track your income and expenses. 2. Check on the state of your debt. Reassess your debt. Create a spreadsheet with balances, how much is owed and minimum payments. Paying off high-interest debt will save more money over time. 3. Conduct a financial checkup. Financial health checks each year allow a review of your accounts and any additional unnecessary services. Free trials expired? Continue or cancel the service. 4. Get your credit report. Obtain a credit report, which helps determine your credit rating without surprises when applying for credit. You can order your free credit report using Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada. 5. Make life easier with auto-withdrawals. Set up pre-authorized withdrawals for investments and bills and set recurring transactions around your payday. Consider saving 10 per cent of your gross income. 6. Become a tax master. Keeping all necessary receipts in a designated area will ensure a smooth process for filing your own taxes. BMO offers a checklist to keep you organized. 7. Be sure to insure. Insure yourself/family in the case of an emergency. This includes medical, life or tenant insurance if you rent. Shop around and read reviews before committing to a policy and find one that best suits you. 8. Organize your financial paperwork. Organization of all financial paperwork is essential. Create folders and file throughout the year. This will make referencing back to them easier.

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SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

59


WORK LIFE COOL JOBS

It ain’t work if you’re having

fun

Everyone fantasizes about landing their dream job. Here are a couple of Airdrie residents who have made their dreams a reality. STORY BY ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON | PHOTOS BY KURTIS KRISTIANSON

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TV HOST Phoenix Phillips says that he starts most interviews with: “I have a curiosity about….” It’s this innate curiosity that has driven the Airdrie resident from the world of radio to his current job as host and senior producer of go! Calgary, a Shaw TV series that profiles interesting people and events in and around Calgary. “Part of my journey has always been one of curiosity,” Phillips says. “As much as I loved radio [he worked for AM 106 and Country 105] and I used to write articles for the Calgary Sun, my curiosity was always, what about this TV thing? I’ve been with Shaw six years and I’ve loved every moment.” Phillips says that go! has given him an “all-access pass” to the heart and soul of Calgary and Airdrie.

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WORK LIFE COOL JOBS

“I look for the passion, whatever that is. I try to do that with every single person I meet. That’s why my job is the best job in the world.” “I can go a bit deeper than most people can,” he says of interviewing everyone from knitters to astronauts. “What are their challenges? What makes them happy?” It even works with famous celebrities, such as the time he interviewed Garth Brooks, noticed he wore an unusual necklace and discovered that the country icon was a huge Pittsburgh Pirates fan. “So we were talking about baseball,” says Phillips. “It’s the art of listening, but it’s also the art of communicating one-on-one with someone.” Although much of his work involves Calgary, Phillips loves to turn the spotlight on Airdrie whenever possible. “We did a Christmas special at the Festival of Lights, and we wanted to because it was a community-building moment,” he says. “We had half

of Airdrie show up … the excitement, the buzz; we were able to facilitate that experience and [let people know] about all these things going on outside of Calgary. “There are amazing people in Airdrie who have actually built it to where it is today,” he adds. “I met [Mayor Peter] Brown and he’s a wonderful gent … what we do is we strip away the title and find out who the person is. I would suggest the viewer takes that and realizes: ‘That could be me. Why couldn’t I be mayor or run Airdrie Food Bank?’ Why can’t a child interested in robotics not be the next Commander Chris Hadfield?” For Phillips, the key to success is simple. “I look for the passion, whatever that is. I try to do that with every single person I meet. That’s why my job is the best job in the world,” he says.

FASHION BUYER What do time travellers and Joel Salomons have in common? They both get to enjoy glimpses of the future. In the case of Salomons, operator/buyer with Sullys Lifestyle, he gets to see what the well-dressed snowboarder or skateboard enthusiast will be wearing a year from now. “I’ve always been interested in fashion, living in Europe for about two years,” says Salomons, whose dad was transferred to Amsterdam when he was in high school. He says that there was no real training for him as he became a buyer, going to trade and fashion shows and developing the instincts to choose the right products for Sullys, the fashion-and-lifestyle retailer his brother, Jon, started in Airdrie in 2003. A shop like Sullys hadn’t been seen in Airdrie before, and it was soon attracting interest from not just this city, but Calgary as well. In 2009, a second location opened in CrossIron Mills. Both sites continued to attract business and this past April the original Sullys relocated from its original Main Street site to new digs in Bayside. The new store, Salomons says, will continue promoting skateboard and snowboard fashion and culture. “If was definitely a learn-as-you-go experience,” he says of developing his skills as a buyer. “It’s about having an eye for what we should buy for the store. We know a lot of stuff gets represented … you have to weed

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T:4.75”

SPINDRIFT PHOTOGRAPHY

through it and figure out what will work for your demographic. “You have to be a bit edgy and push people out of their comfort zones,” Salomons adds. “That’s the fun part of the job – to force people into fashion trends that they might not be ready for in Airdrie, but do it anyway.” He also enjoys sampling new gear months, even a year, before it hits the streets. This year, he’ll be attending shows in Vancouver and Long Beach, scoping out what will be in the stores in 2017. For Salomons, the most rewarding part of the job is seeing happy customers walk out with fashion or gear long after he first identified it as a good fit for the store. “It’s not just a piece of clothing, it’s something I cross-examined – so [their] reaction completes the circle,” he says. “Most people in their jobs don’t get to see the end function – for me, it’s looking at something long before it’s released, then having it come in, unpacking it and seeing it go out the door.” life T:2.25”

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Getting

WORK LIFE TRAINING

PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

Smarter

SMARTstart is Airdrie’s entrepreneurial training program offering tools, training, mentorship and business planning. The program, completed over an eight-month period, helps new and prospective businesses survive – and thrive – during the crucial first years. Now in its third year, the 2016 cohort includes 21 entrepreneurs representing 17 diverse and interesting businesses. In this issue we meet seven of the new participants and their mentors.

Annie Jennifer

Sandi

Lorelei

Sasha

Ian

Entrepreneur: Annie Kelly Age: 39 Business name or business idea: The Alberta Dames (also owner of Cougar Chic Decor) Years in Business: 3 Dream/goal for my business: To be a well-known, successful company with our vintage markets and supplying amazing DIY product to our customers. Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Dragons’ Den What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: How to work smarter and learn more of the business smarts part of running my business successfully, i.e. marketing. My biggest obstacle: Marketing and needing a clone of myself! Why I am an entrepreneur: I love being my own boss. I get back what I put into my business; I work and will work my butt off to be successful. I start each day with: Getting my kids off to school and then [going] out to my studio. Entrepreneur: Jennifer Pyykonen Age: 40 Business name or business idea: The Alberta Dames (also owner of Ava Blake Creations) Years in Business: 3 Dream/goal for my business:  I would love to have our modern vintage markets well known across Canada and maybe travel to host them. I would also like our Alberta Dames Stencil Line to grow bigger. Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Dragons’ Den What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: I hope to learn how to get focused in the right areas to gain business sales. My biggest obstacle: Not liking the serious and numbers part of business Why I am an entrepreneur: I absolutely love every single minute of what I do and each day that my business grows I gain confidence and empowerment. I start each day with: Coffee or Red Bull. Mentor: Sandi Christensen Age: 54 Business: Goodmen Roofing Ltd. Years in business: 17 Growing up I wanted to be: Flight attendant My first year in business: I worked from a home office, which allowed me time to spend with my two-year-old daughter. Best advice I ever got: You can’t do everything – hire the people to do the things that you don’t do well. Proudest achievement:  I’ve been married to the same wonderful man for 25 years. Our daughter is in her first year of business at SAIT. What’s on my desk/laptop right now: Photos of my family I define success as: Finding your niche in your industry while continuing to grow and develop and have fun doing it!

SMARTstart, a non-profit program, is designed and delivered by the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce, Bow Valley College, City of Airdrie Economic Development and Community Futures Centre West.

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Entrepreneur: Sasha Aman Age: 38 Business name or business idea: Legacy Endurance Inc. Years in Business: 1 Dream/goal for my business: To have a retail/training location in Airdrie and scale the scope of products/ services we provide. Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Dragons’ Den What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: Business plan creation; fundamental business management skills and the opportunity to work with a mentor. My biggest obstacle: Time Why I am an entrepreneur: I want to be able to own my own business and be living my life the way I want to. To do something that I thoroughly enjoy and that impacts others’ lives in a positive way. I also want to leave a legacy for my children and be an example to what hard work and determination can achieve. I start each day with: My three children and get them up and ready for school. Entrepreneur: Ian Aman Age: 40 Business name or business idea: Legacy Endurance Inc. Years in business: 1 Dream/goal for my business: To have a retail/ training location in Airdrie and scale the scope of products/services we provide. Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Dragons’ Den What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: Business plan creation. Fundamental business management skills and the opportunity to work with a mentor. My biggest obstacle: Time Why I am an entrepreneur: I believe I work hard to make my own dreams come to life, not someone else’s. I prefer to live on my own terms and want the freedom to decide how and where I get my best work done. I start each day with: A 5:30 a.m. run and a hot cup of coffee. Mentor: Lorelei Talbot Age: 43 Business: Astoria Asset Management Ltd. Years in business: 11 Growing up I wanted to be: Lawyer, truck driver, accountant My first year in business: I started in my home and moved to my first office in seven months. Best advice I ever got: If you can do it today don’t wait until tomorrow. Proudest achievement: Running a half marathon What’s on my desk/laptop right now: Email, banking program, accounting program, payroll I define success as: Continued growth.

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Amazing financial help is close at hand. The Kingsview Market Branch salutes the inspiring achievements of this year’s Amazing Women in Airdrie winners. Our BMO team is pretty amazing too, and are happy to help with mortgages, home financing solutions, and lending options. For more information, please contact Leyla or Becky. Leyla Riazi, Branch Manager 587-775-2026 leyla.riazi@bmo.com

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WORK LIFE TRAINING

Kaidy Jacqui

Kim

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Lynn

Entrepreneur: Kaidy Morgan Age: 29 Business name or business idea: Social Supper Ltd. Years in Business: N/A Dream/goal for my business: To add value to my community, to develop true farm-to-fork offerings and to be profitable and prosperous. Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Celebrity Apprentice What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: To develop strategies that may help me better my business within the community, be it marketing, supplier or industry-specific. As this is my first restaurant retail venture, I feel that participating in the SMARTstart program will help me build and strengthen relationships with those in related fields, and I hope to gain a better understanding of what resources are available within Airdrie specifically. My biggest obstacle: Lacking experience launching a restaurant Why I am an entrepreneur: Because I can think things through, evaluate, research and execute plans as a leader. I am opportunistic and understand firsthand the payoff of hard work. I believe in understanding a business at each

level and its impact on others to bring confidence into decision-making. I am a calculated risk-taker, am adaptable, welcome feedback and act on criticism. I am meant to forge my own path and be my own boss. I start each day with: A few cups of coffee, a check of my email and a lot of Dora the Explorer.

Entrepreneur: Kim Straker Age: 58 Business name or business idea: Atlasware Inc. Years in business: in my first year Dream/goal for my business: To be available in retail outlets across Canada in five years Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Dragons’ Den What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: How to successfully promote and market Atlasware vacuum bottles, how to set up an effective distribution network, how to strategically plan the growth of my company and since this is my first incorporated business, I want to have a clear understanding of what is required to be in compliance with government regulations and guidelines governing incorporated businesses. My biggest obstacle: The length of time it has taken to get my business from the idea stage to the up-and-running stage Why I am an entrepreneur: I have always been intrigued with the idea of owning a business. I am motivated by the responsibility of building a business from the ground up and seeing it succeed. Being my own boss and planning

and setting a course for my business is exciting. I have the ambition to see an idea through and am excited about doing something totally different from the career I worked in for so many years. I start each day with: Breakfast, emails and I plan out my day.

Mentor: Jacqui Jepson Age: 38 Business: The Pink Wand Cleaning Services Years in business: 8 Growing up I wanted to be: My first year in business: I would do anything I could to generate and maintain business. I worked long hours and did not give up. Best advice I ever got: Plan your work and work your plan (my dad). Read The Slight Edge by Jeff Olsen (my mom). Proudest achievement: 2014 Winning Edge Award and teaching my children about being an entrepreneur. What’s on my desk/laptop right now:  Photos of my children I define success as: never giving up, no matter what.

Mentor: Lynn Kehoe Age: 45 Business: Cream Body & Bath Years in business: 10 Growing up I wanted to be: Travel agent/ flight attendant My first year in business: I felt very overwhelmed! Best advice I ever got: Volunteer/engage in the community Proudest achievement: Home – my family; work – 10 years in business What’s on my desk/laptop right now:  Either email or QuickBooks. I am not much of a computer person unless it is for work. I define success as: I’ve done my best each day.


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YOUR

LOCAL NERD

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Entrepreneur: Peter Schill Age: 61 Business name or business idea: Alberta Craft Malting Ltd. Years in business: N/A Dream/goal for my business: Proven production and success within three years Which would I rather: Celebrity Apprentice or Dragons’ Den? Dragons’ Den What I hope to learn in SMARTstart: Refinement of my business plan strategies for attracting investors, a reality check to prove the feasibility of success. My biggest obstacle: Money and time Why I am an entrepreneur: I have always enjoyed my working life when I was in charge. I start each day with: A plan for the day.

Mentor: Sid Van der Meer Age: 59 Business: Retired (Northwest Equipment Ltd.) Years in business: 30 Growing up I wanted to be: Pilot My first year in business: I learned that I had a lot to learn. Best advice I ever got: Spend 10 per cent of every day on what you want to do in three years. Proudest achievement: Developing Northwest Equipment into the vision I had, selling it and achieving our retirement goal. What’s on my desk/laptop right now: Slide show of beautiful places in the world I define success as: Achieving one’s goals and ambitions, big or small.

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locallife A C LO S E R LO O K AT YO U R C O M M U N I T Y

70 One per cent • 72 Round ’em up • 76 Praiseworthy


The 1%

LOCAL LIFE CIT YLIFE

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Understanding your taxes, one per cent at a time BY ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON

s anyone who pours a stiff drink for themselves every spring can attest, taxes feel like the bane of our existence. But for a growing city like Airdrie, they are a necessary evil as they help keep the roads maintained, the amenities operating and the grass mowed. According to the 2016 budget, the City of Airdrie spends just under $120 million annually, and deciding where that goes is a game of “balancing community needs,” says Lucy Wiwcharuk, director of Corporate Services. Unless you win Lotto Max (twice), $120 million may be hard to fathom, and the City’s three per cent property tax increase for 2016 might also not mean a lot by itself, so Wiwcharuk helps put this into perspective. “Based on the 2016 budget, one per cent is $455,000,” she says, which translates to $1.33 per household per month (or $3.99 for the full three-per-cent, just under $48 per year). So what does one per cent of tax dollars get you? “The main pressure in our budget is around safety,” says Wiwcharuk. For example, she says, the City is responsible for paying most of the cost for the RCMP officers who service Airdrie and surrounding area. The overall 2016 budget added funding for eight additional officers; an extra one per cent would pay for three more RCMP members, she says. An extra per cent would also help shore up the City’s new tax stabilization reserve. “In 2016, council made a conscious decision to take half a per cent of the tax increase and start a tax stabilization reserve,” Wiwcharuk says, adding that the money saved in that bank, over time, could be used to deal with such future funding pressures as, for example, the need for another fire hall in the northeast, which would entail $3.5 million in additional operating costs and the addition of 20 firefighters. “The goal is to try and gradually increase [the reserve],” she says.

The tax increase for 2016 also has to help to deal with maintaining some 35 acres of new parkland space, which may involve such costs as fertilizer and additional machinery, Wiwcharuk says. One per cent also more than covers the $250,000 the City has put into a reserve as it builds a “snow plan” to deal with unexpected extreme weather events, says Wiwcharuk. Although we got off lucky this past winter, Snowtember 2014 reminded us that Mother Nature doesn’t always look at the calendar. “We try to be conscious about … balancing community needs,” Wiwcharuk says. “Where do people want these additional services? It’s always a balancing act … between must-haves we’re conscious about, like safety and security, [and] maintaining roads and [keeping up] recreation facilities and parks. And some things didn’t make the cut this year, like doing more beautification to downtown.” To help Airdrie residents get a deeper understanding of municipal budgeting and where their tax dollars go, last year the City launched Look Closer, an online information campaign featuring a series of infographics and some videos related to the 2015 budget, with such details as how many fire hydrants in 2014 needed to be repaired (312) or undergo routine maintenance (1,558); the estimated 2015 operating cost recovery for Genesis Place (85 per cent); and even how many tonnes of newspaper, cardboard and mixed paper were recycled in 2014 (427, 818 and 316, respectively). With the 2016 budget now in the books, Wiwcharuk says, planning for 2017 is already underway, with some citizen engagement in the budget process expected around mid-year and council budget deliberations in the fall. life For more information about property taxes, and the Look Closer information campaign, visit airdrie.ca

“It’s always a balancing act … between must-haves we’re conscious about, like safety and security, [and] maintaining roads and [keeping up] recreation facilities and parks” 70

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5th LOCAL LIFE WESTERN LIVING

STORY BY JEFF MACKINNON | PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI

Generation

Ranchers

Family supports Airdrie Pro Rodeo from its inception

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llen Fletcher’s rodeo life began when he was old enough to climb onto a sheep and do some mutton-busting. He followed that by competing in wild pony races. Just like his siblings. Just like most all other kids from rodeo families around these parts. “I think the last year I did the pony races was the first year they began putting helmets on the kids,” says the 21-year-old. “That was a good idea. Some of those ponies are mean.” Fletcher is part of a fifth-generation Airdrie area ranch family. The Fletchers have 1,000 acres just northeast of the city where the family operates a grain farm and owns about 100 head of cattle.

The Fletchers – (from left) Garrett, Delcene, Melissa, Allen and Evan – carry on the family’s ranching tradition.

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NO EVENT WOULD LAST AS LONG AS THE AIRDRIE PRO RODEO HAS IF IT WASN’T WELL-RUN AND HIGHLY RATED. One of the premier stops on the Canadian rodeo schedule, the 49th edition of the event is set for June 28 to July 2 at the Airdrie Rodeo Grounds. Completely volunteer-driven by the Airdrie Rodeo Ranch Association (ARRA), the rodeo will once again attract the top cowboys in the country for five days of competition. “We will have the same events for the junior rodeo, which are open to kids of all ages, and we will have the same pro rodeo events, right from novice all the way up to bull riding,” says ARRA secretary Lorie Young. The junior rodeo starts at 6 p.m. the first three days; at 2:30 p.m. on Canada Day; and at 5 p.m. on the final day, July 2. The main rodeo is at 7 p.m. nightly June 28-30; at 3:30 p.m. on Canada Day; and at 6 p.m. on the final night. A beer garden will open with live music and dancing after the final bull is ridden each day. – Jeff MacKinnon

For more information, visit airdrieprorodeo.net; ARRA can also be reached at info@airdrieprorodeo.com or 403-948-0512 for anyone interested in volunteering.

Along with running their own ranch, the Fletchers are a big part of the Airdrie Pro Rodeo and have been for decades. Allen’s dad, Russ, began tagging along with his mom and dad to help out at the annual event at age nine. The five-day rodeo will celebrate its 49th year this July long weekend and the Fletchers will be there working hard to make it happen, along with other members of the non-profit Airdrie Rodeo Ranch Association. The rodeo is a big stop on the Canadian pro rodeo circuit, occupying a coveted place on the calendar right before the Calgary Stampede. “A lot of the same stock you see in Calgary comes to Airdrie; Outlaw Buckers, which is all top-grade horses,” says Allen. “It’s a smaller atmosphere but still the quality of the rodeo, of the riding is there.” Adds Allen’s mom, Delcene: “You’re getting the top cowboys and stock. The people who go to Calgary just come a little earlier because it’s July 1. It’s right before the Stampede and it’s [a] nice family experience. You sit on the hill and in the stands and it’s nice and close.” The family’s involvement dates all the way back to 1967 when Russ’s dad (after whom Allen is named) and the Airdrie Lions Club ran a gymkhana, which is an equestrian event featuring racing and games for riders on horses. The event gradually evolved into the current professional rodeo. Naturally the rodeo has gotten bigger and better over the years, says Russ, who once rode bulls. “The stock’s better than it used to be, there’s no doubt,” he says. “I think the cowboys are better athletes because this is their living. No doubt there were good athletes back then but these guys are in top shape.” Allen is the only one of the family still involved as a competitor. He began taking part in bareback riding a couple years back while attending Olds College, where he studied land management (he now works at Taylor Land Services in Airdrie).   Brothers Evan and Garrett and younger sister Melissa, who is now a student at Olds College, also help out at the rodeo “with whatever needs to be done,” says their mom. And while the Fletcher boys have left the nest, all still work hard to keep the ranch operating. “They’re home two or three times a week and they help out, especially with seeding and harvest. We couldn’t do it without them. There’s just no way Russ and I could handle all the work here without them,” Delcene says. Airdrie Pro Rodeo needs a lot of help, too – about a couple hundred volunteers each year to make it work. Russ currently is the rodeo manager and can be found always down at the chutes. “I like to be down where the action is,” he says. “We have a whole bunch of people who have certain jobs but I like the arena end of it better. “It’s a very big project taking on five days of rodeo. With people at the beer gardens and arena staff and all the people at the park, the whole thing I’m sure takes about 200 people to put on,” he adds. While the Fletchers represent a tiny part of that number, the family is a big part of why the rodeo is always a success. life SUMMER 2016 | airdrielife.com

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LOCAL LIFE SP ORT

Right on Target

Longtime archery enthusiast Leslie Cuthbertson takes aim.

THE SPORT OF ARCHERY IS GAINING IN POPULARITY IN AIRDRIE STORY BY JEFF MACKINNON | PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI

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he Cuthbertsons have a foam Bambi in their Airdrie backyard occupying a spot in a flowerbed. At least they did this past winter. When the summer comes, though, it’s taken out and plunked down in a farmer’s field somewhere between Crossfield and Carstairs with some other foam critters. A target is attached to its side and members of the Bighorn Bow Hunters and Archers Club shoot at it. The club has been in existence for many decades. Leslie Cuthbertson and husband Rick, both in their 60s, are among the 120 or so members and have been for about 15 years. “I believe I’m the oldest in the club,” says Rick, age 69. “There’s nobody over 70 at this point.” Members of the non-profit club gather each summer at an outdoor range for 3D shoots – with foam creatures such as the aforementioned Bambi serving as the targets. The club attracts members from all over the region, with Leslie serving as membership co-ordinator and Rick and Larry Harrison, also of Airdrie, among the directors. The president is Brent Chapman of Didsbury and other directors are from Airdrie, Didsbury and Calgary.  While most members also take part in target shooting, the Bighorn club only holds 3D shoots. “We just happen to shoot 3D because most of the people in our club are hunters and they want to go out there and practise hunting,” says Leslie.  “You put them at different distances the same as if you were going to hunt. You have to try and figure out how far the animal is away that you want to shoot.” Hunting is what brought Rick to the sport. At a time he was contemplating trying archery as a form of hunting, a motorcycle crash made the switch necessary after he discovered that shooting a gun had become unpleasant.  “I crashed my motorcycle and hurt my shoulder and I couldn’t get it to heal, so I started shooting [with a bow] and it hasn’t hurt since,” he says. “If I stop shooting it hurts.

“As far as hunting goes, though, I think I sat in my tree stand for the last time last year because of my knees,” he adds. While the majority of those in the club are males in their 20s, 30s and 40s, the sport of archery is likely heading for a growth spurt in the Airdrie area involving all ages and genders. Club member Dane Bruce opened up an indoor shooting facility, OC Archery, in Airdrie in November 2015 and it’s given enthusiasts a place to go to stay sharp in the winter while also offering others an opportunity to see if the sport is a good fit for them before they heavily invest in equipment. Once summer hits, the Bighorn club takes to the field for its opening fun shoot in May. On Father’s Day weekend archers then head to another farmer’s field near Gleniffer Lake for their big weekend. “That’s a fairly big shoot over two days,” Leslie says. “We rent private land and set up a course and everybody takes their trailers out there and sets up for the weekend. Everyone has a good time.” Another competition on the club’s regular field follows in August and they finish off the year with a Christmas event at OC Archery. Various youth age classifications range from the under-nine peewees through to age 21, at which point shooters join the adult division, where they remain until they reach 50 and become senior competitors. At age 60, where the Cuthbertsons now compete, archers are considered ‘masters.’ “We’ve seen a lot more younger kids lately than we’ve seen in a while and a lot more families,” says Leslie. “Normally it’s the dads who get interested first, followed by the moms, then the kids. They turn it into a family thing.” life For more information on the club, visit bighornbowhuntersandarchers.com

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LOCAL LIFE FEATURE

Welcome to our annual look at men we admire – for their passions, determination, dedication and sense of honour. From dads with the right work-life balance to young men with aspirations of Olympic glory, we salute the men of Airdrie. STORY BY WYATT TREMBLAY PHOTOS BY KURTIS KRISTIANSON

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SCOTT CHALUPIAK, a runner with record-breaking motivation “I want to be the first 800 (metre) runner to run under 1:40.” Scott Chalupiak says that his goal might appear farfetched, considering his age, but he’s OK with that. The current record is 1:40.91, held by a Kenyan, but Chalupiak (who has already broken one record, provincial midget men’s steeplechase) believes he can better that – in time. At 16, he’s already running at world levels, and at the Canadian youth level is currently first in 800 metres, as well as in 400-m hurdles, which he only recently took up. Coached by his mother, also a runner and co-founder of Airdrie Aces Athletics Club, Chalupiak’s first race was at the age of nine. It just grew from there, he explains. “Winning was always fun,” he says, “so I figured I’d keep with it.” The balance between school and training can be a challenge, but at the end of the day, Chalupiak says, the sport is something he loves. “Ultimately, I’d like to one day look at the world record list for track and field, and see my name there,” he says.

COLTON CLARKE, a luger with his heart set on the Olympics This 14-year-old student from École Airdrie Middle School loves the adrenalin rush he gets from blazing down a luge track faster than most highway speed limits. Colton Clarke was hooked the moment his parents let him try a run at Calgary’s Canada Olympic Park when he was 10. “I really enjoyed it and decided I would stick with it,” he says modestly, but Clarke is passionate about his sport. He’s been competing for two years, most notably in Germany last January for the Canadian national junior luge team. He hopes to qualify for the team again this fall. Despite a gruelling training schedule, Clarke manages to maintain good grades. “School comes pretty naturally to me,” he says. He doesn’t have much free time, but it’s worth it. “It’s a really neat experience,” he says. “Not a lot of people get to try this sport.” Clarke’s future plans? For now, he’s focused on making the national team again and then, “eventually the Olympics.”

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PAUL HACHEY, a pioneering judoka for children Paul Hachey took his first judo class at the age of five with his father as his sensei. It was a pivotal moment. Hachey went on to become a member of the Canadian national team, a Team Alberta coach and a fifth-degree black belt, and he brings all this experience to the Airdrie Judo Club. “I’ve been in (judo) for many, many years. It kind of becomes a part of you,” says the sensei. His greatest achievement thus far has been the pre-judo program he started a dozen years ago. Children younger than seven have a difficult time with a program,but Hachey didn’t like turning interested children away. So, he pioneered a program for four- to sixyear-olds. “When it first started, it was immensely popular,” he says. Once a week, up to 12 children learn basic judo skills and something more profound. “We’re not just building judoka,” says Hachey, “we’re building good citizens [who] will contribute back to the community in a positive way.”


PHOTO COURTESY OF BRESCIA UNIVERSITY

Dr. Julian Kyne has been a longtime advocate for 24-hour health care in Airdrie, but he’s not one to boast. “I don’t want the story to be about me, I want it to be about Airdrie and its frustration in not getting the kind of care it deserves,” Kyne says. But the story has occasionally been about him. In November 2015, Alberta Health Services (AHS) notified Kyne that his position as the medical director of the Airdrie Urgent Care Centre would not be renewed – a move the community saw as an attack on Kyne’s lobbying efforts with the Airdrie Health Foundation. But Kyne has not been deterred from continuing his efforts. “The community really is behind this, saying, ‘We need proper health care, and we’re willing to do our bit,’” says the doctor. “It’s worth doing and I’m hopeful it’ll happen.”

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JULIAN KYNE, an Airdrie doctor with a prescription for health care

KYRAN WEEMAELS, a young man with an out-of-the-ballpark future Kyran Weemaels, 18, misses his family in Airdrie, but he’s following the dream his arm is forging for him. Weemaels is a freshman and a relief pitcher with a full scholarship to study chemical engineering at Brescia University in Owensboro, Ky. This is just the latest move in Weemaels’ career. He’s played baseball in Airdrie and Strathmore, with the Calgary Dinos and Cubs, and now with the Brescia Bearcats. “I was always a younger pitcher,” he says. “When I was 16, I was playing with 18-year-olds.” Weemaels credits his mother with his success. “My mom is my big inspiration,” he says of his mother, who had a difficult childhood, but became a national volleyball player in Belgium. “She pushes me, and gives me so many options. I look up to her every day.” What advice does the athlete have for people his age? “Don’t give up, and don’t do the least that you can do,” Weemaels says.

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LOCAL LIFE FEATURE

JAY RAYMUNDO, NRG-ized father and fitness trainer Jay Raymundo has a simple philosophy: at the end of his life, he should be able to say he spent his time where it mattered, with his family. Raymundo and his wife, Gwen, a vice-principal with the Catholic school board, have a daughter, Emma, 8, and identical twin sons, Jax and Ethan, 4. “I make sure that they’re the priority,” he says. Raymundo’s father, who never missed his soccer games when he was growing up, inspired this dedication to family. But he is also a canfitpro-certified specialist in personal training, a motivational speaker and the owner of his own company, NRG Fitness. His clients range from young hockey players to grandmothers, from Canadian Tire to FGL Sports, a large Calgary-based sporting goods retailer. The demands on his time are challenging, but Raymundo stays focused on his children. “I want to take advantage of these years,” he says, “because right now, I’m their best friend.”

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CHRISTOPHER TAYLOR, changing lives one cadet at a time

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BLAKE RICHARDS, different seat, same MP

Capt. Christopher Taylor, of the 3016 Airdrie Royal Canadian Army Cadets, was recently given the 2015 Honour Officer for the Southern Zone award for exemplary work with cadets. It’s an achievement he credits to his childhood. “Growing up, I was the devil’s angel,” Taylor says. “I wasn’t one of the better kids in the neighbourhood.” As an adult, he worked with Scouts Canada, but when one of his children joined the cadets, Taylor volunteered as a Cadet Instructors Cadre officer. He had served for several years with the Canadian army, so the fit was perfect. Taylor has been with the 3016 for 11 years now, teaching young people leadership skills. “Many of the kids just start to live and breathe it,” he says. “It’s quite amazing; by their second year they’re getting involved in biathlon, shooting teams and band.” This fall he will take over as the 3016 commander. “I’m excited about that,” Taylor says. “It’s another way to make a difference in these kids’ lives.”

Blake Richards, Conservative MP for Banff-Airdrie, may be sitting in Opposition now, but his commitment to his constituents hasn’t changed. “I’ve been really fortunate to represent such a great bunch of people. It’s a real honour,” Richards says. The role of Opposition in Parliament is more of a critical one, “but you’re still able to have an impact,” he says. The most satisfying part of the MP’s work is collaborating with people who are passionate about bringing real change to their community and country. “For me, to be able to work with people who want to make a difference … what an amazing privilege that is,” he says. In one instance, when the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup riots occurred, Richards and a colleague decided to prepare legislation that would protect people, businesses and property from damage that happens during such an event. “You see there’s a problem, and you can actually take action and make it right,” Richards says. “That is the job. It’s to make a difference for people.”

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MARK MACEACHEN, from house painter to fashion model

MATT TURNER, a teacher with eco-minded students

Mark MacEachen laughs about his dramatic career change. Born and raised in Airdrie, MacEachen went from painting houses to modelling in such iconic locations as New York, London and Milan for fashion giant Calvin Klein. “My mom got me into it,” he says, adding that she would ask, “Well, Mark, do you think you should be a model?” And he would answer, “No, not really.” But a little more than a year ago, at age 21, MacEachen let his mother take him to an agent in Calgary. He was immediately signed and has no regrets. “It’s a weird industry, but it’s kind of fun,” he says. “I get to travel all over the world for work.” MacEachen, who now lives in New York City, offers this advice: “If you have something you want to pursue, even if it’s something that you might feel is different from what’s ordinary, just go ahead and go for it,” he says. “Do it, and do it with passion.”

Matt Turner’s pride in his Grade 4 Nose Creek Elementary School class is evident as he talks about the Airdrie Eco Youth Award his students received this past January for their organic recycling initiative. Turner says that he was simply the facilitator, and that the initiative was his students’ idea. “It was all them,” he says. “I asked what could we do to help the environment … and they came up with this.” The plan involved placing organic bins in every classroom, for which his students would then be responsible. “And they love it,” he says. “They go out and change the bags every week.” When the opportunity for the award arose, the students came up with the idea to apply by creating fake news broadcasts. “Clips like, ‘Student slips on banana peel because someone wasn’t using the organics bin,’” Turner laughs. As recognition for their award, sponsored by FortisAlberta, Mayor Peter Brown presented the class with a certificate and $300, which was earmarked for a field trip to Olds College to show how organics are transformed into usable soil. “They’re super stoked about that,” Turner says. life


Profile for airdrielife magazine

airdrielife summer 2016  

exploring the good life in Airdrie, Alberta for 13 years!

airdrielife summer 2016  

exploring the good life in Airdrie, Alberta for 13 years!