Officials with the Town of Stettler and the Heartland Beautification Committee had a busy day Friday hosting two judges who were checking out the community for the annual Communities in Bloom challenge.
The Town took part in the 25th edition of Communities in Bloom in the ‘International Challenge Small category’ along with Spello, Italy and Zreče, Slovenia.
The communities will be rated from one to five Blooms, based on the scoring obtained.
Also, they will aim to obtain Bronze, Silver or Gold levels in their five-Bloom rating.
Communities in Bloom judges Lorna McIlroy from Grande Prairie and Andrea Bocsi from Dunaújváros, Fejér, Hungary will be doing tbe evaluations.
Categories run the gamut from tidiness, environmental action and heritage conservation to urban forestry, landscape and floral displays, said Rob Spencer, chair of the Heartland Beautification Committee.
“It’s been really fantastic. I think we’ve been able to really showcase some different elements of the town,” he said. “We have to showcase all of the elements – business, residential, industrial, municipal and the volunteer (sector) as well.”
The evaluation is also based on the local conditions and achievements of citizens, businesses, organizations, institutions and the municipal government working together towards common objectives.
Later on Friday, the Beautification Champion Award and the Eco Excellence Awards were handed down.
Kathy Thomas was the 2019 Beautification Champion for her dedication to beautifying the Museum grounds.
The 2019 Eco Excellence Award recipients were Mark Fox, for leading by example on how we can live with less impact on the planet, and the Superfluity Crafters, represented by Rose Wesner and Pat Brennan, for making hundreds of decorations from donated items at Superfluity.
Vince Miazga received the 2019 ‘Item-Longevity’ Award for keeping his lawn mower in use for 42 years.
“It’s so much fun to showcase the community and to learn a few new things about your own community as well,” said Spencer. “I’ve done this tour for 10 years, and I still learn some new things each time.
“It’s also fun to re-examine the community with someone new; you put on new glasses and you can see things in a different way. It’s also great to meet new people, too.”
The National and International results will be announced in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia from Sept. 25th to 28th, during the Symposium and Awards Ceremonies with the theme of ‘Bloom by the Sea’ Celebrating Excellence.
Communities in Bloom is a Canadian non-profit organization committed to fostering civic pride, environmental responsibility and beautification through community involvement and the challenge of a national program, with focus on the enhancement of green spaces in communities.