Linda Stillinger/Big Valley Bulletin
After all the preparation, hard work and anticipation, “Rails and Tales” is over and what a fantastic experience for the Village of Big Valley! Every day of this exposition was jam-packed with special activities and exhibits. Memorable experiences included all the marvellous static displays of vintage steam, gas and oil-powered equipment, the delightful Métis fiddle which could be heard over the crowds, the amazing art show held all week at the library showcasing our local talent, Main Street and Railway Avenue lined with people for the Canada Day parade, the few dozen classic cars showing up for everyone to check out while waiting for the CF-18 Hornet and of course, the highlight – Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 Hornet flyby last Thursday.
The thank you list is extremely long after a week like the one we just had. First, a great big thank you to all of the residents. Everyone did such a fantastic job with the flags, red and white flowers and beautifully groomed yards to make Big Valley really shine for all of our visitors. There were so many comments about what a beautiful little village we have.
Thank you to Big Valley’s Public Works staff. Mel, Tammy and Jim did an awesome job getting everything taken care of despite all the wind and rain causing extra work. Thank you to Chantel Janke and Dina Clark for taking on the Community Canada Day BBQ this year. This is such a great event to just get together with friends and neighbours, visit, watch the kids play and not have to cook supper! Thank you to the Big Valley Inn and Frontier General Store for their donations toward the BBQ and to Bill Smillie for his hard work.
The rain and wind put a kink into celebrations late Saturday afternoon but stopped in time for the fireworks. Thank you to McKenzie Crossing Campground for their generous $500 donation this year. This meant we could do a bigger and better show for Canada’s 150th. Thank you to Frontier General Store for continuing to give us a discount on the fireworks and as always, a big thank you to Mel and Jim for volunteering their time to light them all up.
There are so many more to thank – Friends of the Big Valley Library and the Ag Society for arranging so many of the special events over the past week; the awesome Parade Marshall; the councillors for volunteering endless hours to help with anything asked of them; and finally to the Rails and Tales Committee and Alberta Prairie. Thank you for choosing our community to host your event this year. The exposition gave Big Valley one heck of a Canada 150 story to tell and brought us so many more visitors – and fighter jets – than we could have brought here without all of us working together.