County community service awards recognize spirit of volunteerism

Proud of their contributions – Recipients of County of Stettler Community Service Awards pose together to mark the recognition of their volunteer services to the communities in the county on Friday

Proud of their contributions – Recipients of County of Stettler Community Service Awards pose together to mark the recognition of their volunteer services to the communities in the county on Friday

By JULIE BERTRAND

Independent Reporter

The County of Stettler held its annual Community Service Awards at the Nevis Community Hall on Friday, Jan. 21.

One hundred twenty-one people attended the event, where Mark Higgins was the master of ceremonies.

Gerry Langand and Adrianne Flahr gave a mid-evening banjo and guitar show, playing their own songs as well as country favourites.

Nine awards were given during the evening.

Mark and Jennifer Higgins won the Stettler Dodge Community Service Award.

Wilda Gibbon received the ATCO Electric Arts, Culture and Heritage Award.

Brenda Gebhardt was considered worthy of the Donalda and District Agricultural Society Award.

Barri and Shannon Shirley won the Big Valley Agricultural Service Award.

Jim and Maureen Wasdal took home the Sullivan Lake West Agricultural Society Community Service Award.

Dale and Donna Chapman received the Stettler Agricultural Society Award.

Clint and Sherry Marshall won the Erskine Social Recreation Society.

D.J. Kistner won the Botha Youth Award.

Gilbert Van Straten won the Botha Lifetime Achievement Award.

The committee had to use subterfuge to get some of the winners to attend the event.

“We were told that my parents were getting an award and that we had to be present,” said Barri Shirley, before thanking everyone in the room.

James Nibourg, county councilor and Erskine South warden, was on hand to present an award to his former elementary school teacher, Wilda Gibbon.

“Volunteering is alive and well in the county of Stettler,” Nibourg said.

“This is what makes our community one of volunteers,” he said.

“You could pay millions of dollars for the amount of hours and dedication that these people put in.

Volunteerism is the lifeblood of our community.”

Next year’s community service awards night will be held in either Endiang or Byemoor.