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Some further thoughts on Slave Lake’s Riverboat Daze ‘Rock the Block,’ experience:
A lot of fun was had by a lot of people in downtown Slave Lake on Friday night, July 7. People are still buzzing about it. ‘Why didn’t we do this before?’ etc.
It probably has been done before. Certainly part of downtown has been closed off to traffic before for a few hours.
But this was different. Better. More fun. There is definitely something to be said for having vehicles banned, so people can walk all over without having to worry about anything. And being able to sit and eat and drink and socialize outside in downtown on a nice summer evening – it’s tough to beat that.
White Avenue in Edmonton attempts to achieve this atmosphere – but they’ll never get it as long as the traffic is roaring by all the time. It takes guts and imagination to create pedestrian spaces in towns and cities. We do it in Slave Lake for a few hours one night and get a glimpse of what urban life can be like. What it is like in parts of many cities around the world. People tend to flock to pedestrian shopping areas where they can walk around at leisure, enjoy outdoor refreshments, people-watch and generally enjoy not having to look out for, smell and hear the roar of vehicles. It works. Here, we are generally scared to death of ‘inconveniencing’ the drivers of automobiles. It might be time to look a bit closer at that.
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Just stop it right now. Vandalism, that is. Somebody with more energy than brains went around in the southeast part of Slave Lake last week, smashing car mirrors and (in at least one case) a back window. Police are looking for clues, but chances are lousy.
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On the gardening front, we’re hearing good things from people about how the veggies are developing. Cherry tomatoes are starting to ripen – these being ones that were already started when they were planted. That little boost of hot weather in the first week of the month made a big difference. Hothouse tomatoes are another story, of course. They’ll probably start showing up any day in the farmers’ market.
Raspberries are coming along nicely. Any forecasts on the wild blueberry crop this year? A lot of people are looking forward to it.
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That was a nice pair of tropical downpours we had on July 9 and again on July 13. Two inches, somebody said, for the first one. Somebody else said an inch and three quarters. Two inches the second time, said one guy. Three inches, said another. Whole streets disappeared at the height of the first one. Oddly enough, Sawridge Creek didn’t come up much.
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We did a brief survey of boat traffic in Lesser Slave River on July 9. Fifteen boats going either up or down in half an hour of watching. Is that busy?
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Lesser Slave Lake is big; you can tell that from the shore, but when you get out on it, the impression is even bigger. However, at 1,160 km2, it is only the 43rd biggest in Canada, ranking just below Manitoba’s Island Lake and ahead of God’s Lake – also in Manitoba. Superior leads the list at 82,000 square kilometres. That makes Superior second biggest in the world – if you count saltwater lakes. Some lists do and some don’t. Some include man-made lakes and others don’t. Lesser Slave, by the way, has 13.69 cubic kilometres of water – on average, that must be.
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In our report last week on the recent Roland Michener graduation ceremony, we missed two of the scholarship winners. Kourtnee Burnett and Kennedy Lukan were both awarded the Ann Bartlett Memorial Scholarship. Congratulations!
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Do you know what’s more useless than a shoe store in the Shire? We do – it’s someone who dislodges a fire extinguisher when there isn’t a fire. A close source to the Leader told us about this fiasco that happened last weekend. Apparently, the floor looked as if it was covered in snow. But there was no snow, just a sticky film that has been nothing but a headache to clean, so we hear.
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This just in: High Prairie RCMP have put out a call for help in finding a missing person. He’s 38-year-old Lynn Vern Pearson.

He may or may not be traveling to Saskatchewan. He is described as an Aboriginal person, five feet 11 inches tall and weighing 229 lbs., with black hair and brown eyes. Please call 780-523-3378.

 

 

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