Through the Years: Elk move hits a road block, sand championship, etc.

Snippets from February 3 Lakeside Leaders

Some smokers were complaining about the town making its buildings (own office, public works shop, and fire hall) and vehicles smoke-free. One resident was so upset that they started a petition and sent a Letter to the Editor to the Leader.

The Alberta Open Sandcastle Championship president presented at the Slave Lake and District Chamber of Commerce meeting. It had $15,000 of prizes for sandcastles and $5,000 for sand volleyball.

The Slave Lake Golden Pike Society received permission to take over the boat launch on the Lesser Slave River. The plan was to improve it to increase tourism.

“The dynamic balance of man and nature in the Lesser Slave Lake region” was the theme of a proposed wilderness interpretation centre at Devonshire Beach. The proposed cost was $3.8 million.

The Lakeside Leader, Joey’s Edibles and Barton’s Drugs held an annual Valentine Poetry contest.

The Slave Lake Native Friendship Centre had various upcoming events. These included soup and bannock, building snow sculptures, bingo, a workshop – ‘Word Painter/Cross Cultural Communication,’ fun bowling, a chili bake off and a talent show.

There was a possibility that 50 Jasper elk were going to be transported to a secret location in the Swan Hills south of Kinuso. One of the organizations involved was the local chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. They were originally going to come from Elk Island National Park, but the switch to Jasper National Park meant lots of paper work and a possible delay. The relocation of the elk had local approval, but there were concerns raised in Jasper and Red Deer. The concerns were urban elk from the Jasper town site wouldn’t be able to survive in the wild and the Swan Hills Hazardous Waste Treatment Plant, both concerns the local foundation and researchers said were dealt with.

Gillian McPherson, Kerri Larson, and Cody Kihn (from Roland Michener Secondary School in Slave Lake) were chosen to be part of a junior high school honour band at the University of Alberta. They were nominated by band teacher, Ellen Criss.

The RCMP held a sting operation to see if people would sell tobacco to a 15-year-old in Slave Lake. Three employees pled guilty in court and one business pled not guilty and set trial date.

Gas in Slave Lake was 49.9 cents per litre. High Prairie was 53.9, Westlock was 43.9, and Edmonton was 42.9 cents.

There was a new A & W in Wabasca. It was the ‘newest in Canada.’

The Slave Lake Hospital Auxiliary had been active in the community since before the first hospital was built in 1968. In 1999, it had over 20 members. From November 1995 to December 1998 it donated over $80,000 worth of medical equipment to the hospital.

Slave Lake bowling alley had a new owner, who offered a ‘bowl-for-a-loonie’ special offer, so the bowling alley was packed.

From Slave Lake, Aaron and Winnie Lehman, Nancy, Bradley, and Keith Larocque, and Luke Williams competed at the Tawatinaw Loppet, which was a cross country ski event. The competition was at the Tawatinaw Valley Ski Hill.

Local schools were to get computers and the internet.

Two Grade 3 classes at C.J. Schurter Elementary School took part in FinS (Fish in Schools). The students raised the fish from eggs to fry over three months. The fish eggs had just arrived. At the end of the project, the fish were released into approved water bodies.

People were keeping more walleye than the legal limit and getting caught. Some were even building secret compartments in their ice shacks. Fish and Wildlife had seized a few of these.

Sheri Smears was organizing a KARE (Kindness and Respect for Everyone) week, which was to promote random acts of kindness. This was part of the 6th annual Frost Fest.
Frost Fest events included – Food Fest at the Slave Lake Friendship Centre, Night of Chocolate Bliss at the Rotary Club of Slave Lake Public Library, and Night Time Winter Wonders at the Boreal Centre for Bird Conservation.

The Slave Lake Ukrainian Cultural Association’s Malaka (Ukrainian New Year’s) celebration was sold out in one hour. The theme was ‘Sophia and the Seven Miners’ an adaptation of ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.’

Moms on Missions (MOM) was a new group organized by eight Slave Lake mothers. The group started in response to the Haiti earthquake a few weeks earlier. It already had two events planned and ideas for more.

In sports, Indica’s Synchronized Swim Club held its annual show. It included two special guests from Edmonton, who compete at just under the Olympic level. Five Slave Laker snowshoers qualified for the Arctic Winter Games.

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