The Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce is welcoming the federal government’s approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
“This is a positive development that is projected to invest $46.7 billion into the Canadian economy over the next 20 years which will in turn create jobs and economic prosperity that Canadians rely on. Green lighting this project will provide revenue as Alberta is projected to receive $19.4 billion from the project.
The result of this will be opportunities for families, jobs, infrastructure and the ability to bring marginalized families into the fold,” the chamber said in a statement released to local media on Wednesday.
The chamber’s executive officer Cyndi Vos said while oil is not as big an industry to Lethbridge’s economy as it is in other communities in Alberta, it is still an important one nonetheless.
“Alberta’s ability to unlock its oil to world markets will contribute to the future of our economic success as a province but also have positive economic impacts for Lethbridge,” said Vos.
“While Lethbridge has a diverse economy, the revenue provided by this industry will find its way back to Lethbridge by way of employment and other options.”
Elderly woman’s wallet stolen
Lethbridge Police hope the public can help them identify a man suspected of accosting an elderly woman and stealing her wallet last week.
On June 13 police responded to a report of a theft in the parking lot of the southside Walmart where a 78-year-old woman was approached by two unknown men while she was walking to her vehicle. Both men stood very close to her and began speaking in another language. They distracted the woman by pointing to items in a flyer and attempting to get the woman to take a $20 bill. She managed to get away from them but noticed after she returned home her wallet was missing.
Police said credit card transactions began happening almost immediately and continued the next day, occurring at sites from Lethbridge to Revelstoke, B.C. west of Calgary.
One of the men is described as East Indian, about 30 years old, tall with a fair complexion. The second man is also described as East Indian, but shorter with a stocky build. Anyone who can identify the man or has information that could assist police is asked to call 403-328-4444 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. Anonymous tips can also be submitted online at www. p3tips.com. Crime Stoppers will pay cash for information leading to an arrest.
Crew undergoes river training
After having tremendous difficulties locating an adolescent boy who drowned in the river last year despite putting in a sustained and physically taxing effort, the members of the Lethbridge Fire and EMS Water Rescue Team knew they needed to do things differently next time.
That’s why the team contacted New York-based, internationally-recognized dive rescue and recovery training company Lifeguard Systems Inc. to set up four days of intensive exercises starting this past Monday on the Oldman River near where the boy perished.
“Diving in moving water was a completely different technique than diving in still water,” explained team lead Brendon Pyne. “So we were applying still-water diving (techniques) to moving water. Where now, with what we are being trained on this week, we know to be diving in moving water we need to adjust our training and search technique.”
Pyne said being unable to locate the boy was emotionally devastating for his team members. It was the first time it had happened in the unit’s history, and they intended to see to it it didn’t happen again if it is in their power, he said.
“This training is going to make us 100 per cent more effective as a water rescue team,” he stated.
Moving water like one finds in a river completely changes the equation for recovery divers, confirmed Lifeguard Systems Inc. trainer Andrea Zafares.
Zafares is one of the world’s most renowned underwater investigation and drowning recovery experts.
Downtown farmers market opens
The Lethbridge downtown farmers market in Festival Square will return for its 13th year starting July 3. Exhibition Park’s chief operating officer Mike Warkentin made the announcement alongside Downtown BRZ executive director Ted Stilson during a morning press conference held on Thursday.
Exhibition Park hosts the annual summer market, and Warkentin said there were still a few spots left for vendors who may be interested in selling their produce or products at downtown Lethbridge every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. through until Sept. 4.
Warkentin felt the downtown farmers market was a great way for Exhibition Park to help energize the local food economy, and tell the larger story of agriculture in the region to the citizens of Lethbridge.
“One of our mandates is actually to connect rural Alberta with urban southern Alberta,” Warkentin explained. “So for us to be able to extend that agricultural piece off of our site into the community is absolutely key for us. The farmer’s market is our best tool to do that. We realize that it is our main connection point to the community, and, whether people realize it or not, it is likely one of their main connection points to agriculture in southern Alberta as well.”
Hundreds attend Pride Fest
Galt Gardens was filled with hundreds of people sporting bright rainbow colours for the 11th annual Pride Festival Saturday afternoon.
What started out as a small gathering at someone’s house, or in a small complex rented by the group, has grown into a large community celebration of the LGBTQ2SA community. This is the sixth year Pride Fest has hosted a parade through downtown to the festival grounds in Galt Gardens, and this year’s parade hosted more floats of supporters than previous years.
“The original Pride started out as a potluck dinner down in the Elks compound, and it eventually grew from that into the Pride event in the park, and six years ago was our first pride parade and it just grows every year,” says Glen Herbst, chair of Lethbridge Pride.
“It really feels amazing. One of the things that we noticed today throughout the crowd is all of the families which is exactly what we want, we want to be inclusive, we want families to feel welcome and we want all of the kids out there to feel that they belong.”
Saturday afternoon was busy with lots of live performances from drag queens and drag kings, belly dancers, hoop dancers, and live music from Canadian musicians such as Patrick Masse and Shaela Miller.
School celebrates 30 years
The Children of St. Martha’s School celebrated 30 years of being an inclusive and welcoming school community in West Lethbridge.
The special anniversary ceremony took place on Thursday afternoon as former teachers and community members joined St. Martha’s students and staff in marking this important milestone in the school’s history with traditional Blackfoot drumming, musical presentations from each of the elementary school’s six grades and the opening of a special time capsule.
One of the special guests on the day was the school’s first principal, Ken Tratch.