Monday, June 1, 2015

Town and MD receive thanks and final report from 2014 SASG committee

Reeve Brian Hammond and 2014 SASG Co-Chair and Facilities Chair John Verhagen
Chris Davis - A delegation from Pincher Creek's 2014 Southern Alberta Games (SASG) Committee recently presented the Town and the MD of Pincher Creek councils with certificates of appreciation for their assistance in mounting last year's successful event. Pictured above, SASG Sports and Facilities Chair John Verhagen presents MD of Pincher Creek Reeve Brian Hammond with a certificate of appreciation on behalf of the committee, received on behalf of the MD. The delegation to the MD also included Director of Community Services Diane Burt-Stuckey and Recreation Manager Adam Grose. Burt-Stuckey told MD council that Pincher Creek was hoping to host the upcoming 50th SASG in 2019. Pincher Creek was the first SASG host in 1970, and has hosted the Games a total of four times. A 2014 SASG Final Report was also presented in written form, and is excerpted below.

A sea of Pincher Creek orange takes the field en route to opening ceremonies
Highlights of 2014 SASG
  • More than 2,262 athletes from 13 regions across Southern Alberta competed for a total of 1,416 medals in 23 sports and cultural events. 
  • Over 5,000 additional participants, family and friends. Restaurants and downtown stores saw an influx of customers and our parks and facilities were utilized to their potential. 
  • The M.D of Pincher Creek Team made up of 440 local athletes led the Games in points and medals followed by the M.D. of Taber and the City of Lethbridge, respectively. 
  • Left behind: gently used sports equipment to schools and clubs in the community. The community will also benefit from improvements to the existing beach volleyball court, new dugouts at Lions Ball Park, new lines at the St. Michaels School track and new shale at the Lions Ball Park, Juan Teran, and Sproule diamonds. 
  • The Committee, Parks and Public Works staff did an incredible job at preparing each venue for the Games. Visitors commented on how beautiful the community and facilities looked for the Games.

2014 Southern Alberta Summer Games Final Report 
(excerpted with photos from the Pincher Creek Voice archives added)

The Pincher Creek community successfully hosted the 45 Annual Southern Alberta Summer Games, July 2 - 5, 2014. Planning for these Games began nearly 2 years prior, with the Pincher Creek & District Recreation Advisory Committee recommending a bid to host. The Town and MD of Pincher Creek discussed the opportunity to co-host the Games at a Joint Meeting in October 2012 and subsequently, each Council confirmed their financial commitment by year end. The Town and MD of Pincher Creek signed off on a letter of agreement with the Southern Alberta Recreation Association in May 2013 and Mayor Anderberg accepted the torch from Taber in July 2013 which made hosting of the 2014 Games official!

The first of the planning committee meetings was held March 6, 2013 with conversations around what sports we could host, potential volunteers to assist, facilities to be used and sources of grants and funding. Over the next 16 months, the Executive, Sport and Cultural Committees were formed and met on a regular basis to finalize sports and rules, confirm facilities to be used and improved, develop budgets and to raise funds through grants, sponsorships and in kind donations. The various Summer Games Committees met a total of 19 times to prepare for the Games with over 35 volunteers filling the key leadership roles. Recreation Department Staff attended the meetings and provided day to day support for the volunteers. As well, they took on the responsibility for the Games website, registration, Games promotions, facility upgrading and coordination of the 'Games Office'. A Games Coordinator was hired in April 2014 and she completed work mid-August when everything was returned, packed up and accounted for. The Recreation Office was used as the Games Office until the Monday before the Games and then it was moved over to the Town Hall Gym, along with the Games torch. The old swimming pool building was used as the "pick up" location for chairs, tables, signs and various equipment throughout the Games.

Pincher Creek hosted a total of 23 sports/events including the 5/l0k Run, 5 Pin Bowling, Archery,Athletics (Track & Field), Badminton, Ball Hockey, Baseball, Basketball 3 on 3, Beach Volleyball. Cribbage, Cross Fit Pincher Creek, Cycling, Equestrian, Golf, Handgun, Mini-Soccer, Photography, Rugby, Small Bore, Soccer, Swimming, Tennis and Trapshooting.

The cultural component of the Games was also outstanding, right from the ceremonies to the high caliber photography competition, the incredible quilt exhibition, the vocalist and trick riders! All events were a great addition to the Games and provided entertainment to the visitors and highlighted our local culture. The two museums and Lebel Mansion were promoted in the Games booklet so hopefully their visitations increased during this time.

Lauralee Jones photo*
The Opening Ceremonies were well attended with around 750 being served beef on a bun before the main event. The "sea of athletes" were led into the opening ceremonies by riders on horseback and the Pincher Creek athletes wearing bright orange t-shirts were warmly welcomed by the crowd - what wonderful support from the community! This was only one of the many great moments of the Games.

Volunteer recruitment continued right up to the Games and in the end, around 350 community volunteers assisted during the 4 day event. As well over 75 officials served as referees and umpires for baseball, soccer, swimming, etc. with many travelling from various Southern Alberta communities. A Volunteer Appreciation Barbecue hosted by the Town and MD of Pincher Creek Councils was held just prior to the Games to thank the volunteers for their commitment, to distribute the volunteer t-shirts and to have a meeting with their Sport Chair.

Attendance wise, a total of 2,098 athletes and 164 coaches registered for the 2014 Summer Games, which is an outstanding Games attendance for a smaller community. Pincher Creek was VERY proud to say that 440 local athletes registered to compete as the "MD of Pincher Creek" region, being our largest contingent ever! To top it off. we also accumulated the most points and took first place overall in the Games.

Participants were generally very pleased with the condition and maintenance of the sport facilities in Pincher Creek and area. In addition to the Town owned facilities, there was a great spirit of cooperation shown by the following community groups for extending the use of their facilities and grounds for the Games: Agricultural Society, Oldman River Gun Club, Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village, St. Michael's School, Matthew Halton School, Canyon School. Pincher Creek Golf Club, Chinook Lanes, Black Powder Gun Club, Cross Fit Pincher Creek and Crowsnest Pistol Club.

Facility improvements - those undertaken in time for the Games included:
  • Track and Field - track repair in southeast corner, line painting, runway and jumping pit replacements, painting of rail fence. 
  • Lions Ball Diamond- washrooms replacement in 2013 and dugouts replacement in 2014; 
  • fence & backstop repaired; new magnetic bases. 
  • Juan Teran Park - dugouts painted and fence and backstop repaired; new magnetic bases. 
  • Beach Volleyball Courts - new sand for existing court and temporary court developed.

Equipment - many organizations such as Minor Soccer, Minor Baseball, Swim Club, Crowsnest Pass Soccer Club, 4-H, Rugby Club, Heritage Acres, Castle Ski Club, schools etc. loaned their equipment for use during the Games in order to keep budgets down. There were some minor pieces of equipment purchased for the track, soccer, shooting events, badminton, tennis etc. and these were turned over appropriate clubs/schools after the Games as a legacy for their future use.

Community support for the volunteers before and during the Games was outstanding. Crow Signs donated the volunteer t-shirts; Tim Horton's and Boston Pizza provided morning snacks and pizza for lunch each day; A & W and Subway donated 50% of the cost of volunteer meals (coupons basis) and Walmart and Rexall donated all the water for volunteers and officials. Volunteers were integral to the success during the Games and they did an incredible job! They were some long hot days. but they remained cheerful and helpful with many compliments being received from the athletes and visitors. There were no major accidents or injuries to report however the emergency services and health care providers were on alert during the games.
'The organization of these Games was phenomenal,  seriously a round of applause is required.  All of the volunteers that I came in contact with were super nice and very helpful ~ Games Participant
Breezy, Pincher Creek Regional Director Megan Rainford, and Gusty
Closing Ceremonies were more subdued than the Opening Ceremonies but Gusty and Breezy were still there making us smile! It was a bittersweet moment when the Games flag was passed over to the 2015 Claresholm Summer Games representative and the Games Torch was extinguished.

Media coverage of the ceremonies and the sports events was excellent and we appreciated their dedication to take photos, videos and write articles throughout and after the 4 day event.  The pre-Games promotions and coverage during the Games, provided very positive reporting of our community and the quality of event.

Final Reports - Following the Games, the Executive and Sports Chairs prepared final reports/evaluations for Southern Alberta Recreation Association for the benefit of next year's host. The comprehensive binder of information, records and budget information was turned over at the January 2015 Summer Games evaluation meeting in Lethbridge, ending our formal commitment as a host community. As well, an inventory of equipment and signs was conducted and these were packed in the SARA trailer and sent off to Claresholm.

Pincher Creek Mayor Don Anderberg and Reeve Brian Hammond present SASG flag to Claresholm Mayor Chris Dixon

Budget - Revenue wise, the original fund raising target of $9,000 was surpassed with over $12,320 being received in cash donations/sponsorships, $10,000 in grants and over $22,341 in recorded "in kind" donations for a total of $44,661. Of the cash donations received, $1,500 from the Lions Club went towards the Lions Ball Park dugout project. and the remaining amount of $10,820 was turned over the Town of Pincher Creek as the fundraised revenue for Summer Games. The final revenue budget totals $93,971.65 with $30,000 from the Town of Pincher Creek and $30,000 from the MD of Pincher Creek. The balance of funds came from Alberta Sport Connection and the Southern Alberta Recreation Association.

Expenses totaled $93,971.65 with the largest expenses being that of the Games Coordinator, the cost of officials and equipment for various sports and overall Games promotions. The Town budgeted in 2014 for facility improvements to the track, Lions Park dugouts, bases and backstop/fence repairs which totaled over $50,000. The MD of Pincher Creek assisted with gravel improvements for the Oldman River Gun Club. The largest facility/equipment costs assessed to the Summer Games budget included soccer nets & flags, sand for long jump pits and beach volleyball pits and painting of the dugouts. SARA reimbursed Pincher Creek in the amount of $1,956 for Games signage, to be used for future Games. Overall the facility improvements will be a benefit to the community in years to come, this being another legacy of the Games program.

Overall we feel the Games were a great success and they ran smoothly with many positive comments being received about the volunteers. organization, facilities and our community. It appeared that hotels, campgrounds and food establishments benefited from the Games as it was a very busy town during the four day event.

Extensive planning and community support is required for a multi-sport and cultural event such as this. It was evident that staff, volunteers and community came together to deliver a tremendous Games! A sincere thank you to the Councils of the Town of Pincher Creek and the Municipal District of Pincher Creek No. 9 for your financial support. encouragement and confidence to deliver this amazing "grassroots sporting festival" to the residents of the Pincher Creek community and Southern Alberta.

Organizing Committee

Executive Committee

Brian Wright - Summer Games Co-Chair
John Verhagen - Summer Games Co-Chair, Facilities Chair
Wayne Oliver -Sports & Facilities
Faith Zachar- Fundralsing Chair
Savi Houldin - Fundraising
Kathy Verhagen - Volunteer Chair
Japhla Epp - Medical Chair
Susan Vogelaar - Ceremonies Co-Chair
Eleanor Nichol - Ceremonies Co-Chair
Sue Leong-Neumann - Results Chair

Sports Chairs/Contacts

Angela Walter - Golf Chair
Tobias Gelber - Cycling Co-Chair
Kirn Gelber - Cycling Co-Chair
Trisha Carlton - Cribbage Chair
Roger McAdam - Athletics Chair
Dan Kuftinoff - Trapshooting and Small Bore Chair
Kris Larson - Handgun Chair
Carrah Walter - Baseball Chair
Kim Jorgenson - Swimming Chair
Denise Somerville - 5 Pin Bowling Chair
Ryan Falardeau - 5 Pin Bowling
Anita Doell - 5 Pin Bowling
Janet Watmough - Equestrian Chair
Kathy Rast - Badminton Chair
Carole Goodreau - Beach Volleyball Chair
Randy Whitehead - Rugby Chair
Brent Woodard - Mini Soccer/Soccer Chair
Lindy Jessen - 3 on 3 Basketball Chair
Bob Grier- 5/10 I< Run Co-Chair
Alec Chisholm - 5/10 K Run Co-Chair
Jacqui Bruns - Ball Hockey Chair
Joe Mrak-Archery
Ken Paulson -Tennis Co-Chair
Fetnando Rullan -Tennis Co-Chair
Paula Szaroz - Cross-Fit Chair
Brenda Shenton - Photography Chair
Dixie McAdam - Quilting Chair

Kristen George - SASG Coordinator

Registered Volunteers - 279
Non registered Volunteers/Day-of - 75 approximately
= Approximately 354 Volunteers

Senior Dust Devils earn Gold at 2014 SASG

Pincher Creek tops for medals and points at conclusion of 2014 SASG

17 and Over and Open Beach Volleyball at the 2014 SASG

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