Centennial celebrations

It’s only March but Red Deer’s full slate of celebrations marking the City’s centennial are certainly in full swing.

This week was a particular highlight as March 25 marked the actual anniversary of 100 years of City status. The day prior, there were fun, family-oriented activities at several recreational facilities around down.

And on March 25, Mayor Morris Flewwelling presided over the burial of a time capsule packed with all sorts of items representing Red Deer this year. Located in City Hall Park, the time capsule will be opened in 50 years’ time.

This event was held in tandem with the opening of a time capsule from 1963, and that had also had some items placed in it in 1997 as well. It was fascinating to catch of glimpse of the City’s past through the items found in that box, including a copy of a certificate that had been given to Red Deerians who had called the City home for at least 50 years at that point in time.

With all of these activities going on, and plenty more planned in the coming months, it’s certainly a time for Red Deerians to take time to consider what a truly great City we live in.

Red Deer can be described as having a committed core of citizens that really care about it – its history, its many fine features, its obviously powerful sense of community among others.

Whenever there are major shows or events held in the City, volunteer help typically isn’t too hard to find. It’s also a generous community.

Time and again, citizens come through with solid support for a spectrum of causes.

So there is indeed much to celebrate, and there are many more functions on the way to take part in as part of the year-long party. In May, Tree House Youth Theatre will be presenting some special centennial performances. And one of the year’s biggest events – the Homecoming Festival – is slated for June 29-30.

The weekend wraps with the ‘River of Light’ event which launches from Fort Normandeau at 10:30 p.m. A state-of-the-art light show, the River of Light features giant canola oil barrels lit up on the inside and configured in various arrangements to float down the river all the way to Three Mile Bend.

July 1 of course marks the annual Heritage Day at Bower Ponds.

A ‘barn’ or street dance runs July 16 followed by the Westerner Days parade on July 17. Things continue right on into the autumn, with an old-fashioned fall fair at Fort Normandeau on Sept. 21.

Organizers have pointed out that the goal is to encourage those planning special and regular events throughout the year to shape them with the centennial theme in mind. It certainly looks like that challenge has been taken to heart.