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Around Red Deer May 8th…..


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1:44 pm – Earl Dreeshen, Member of Parliament for Red Deer – Mountain View joined an all-party delegation in Washington from May 1-4. The meetings were broad in range but were primarily focused on issues relating to industry, science, and technology. Among the key items discussed were trade issues and how it affects industries on both sides of the border. Dreeshen and his colleagues met with Senators, Members of Congress, and various government and agency officials in this regard.

1:39 pm – The Smiles Thru Lindsey Foundation has committed $10,000 in funding that will go towards a Mental Health First Aid program at Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools (RDCRS). This training course will continue to help staff provide initial support to someone who may be developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. Read More.

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10:31 am – Good news to pass along regarding a missing Ponoka woman. RCMP say 22 year old Nikita Rabbit has now been located safe.

10:27 am – The City of Red Deer wants you to know the risks during Emergency Preparedness Week. Read More.

10:26 am – The Town of Innisfail is marking Emergency Preparedness Week with numerous events and activities. Read More.

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10:12 – Street sweeping resumes in the Town for All Seasons again today. Read More.

10:10 am – Attention Sylvan Lake gardeners! A Community Garden Meeting is taking place at the Sylvan Lake Family And Community Centre from 7:00 – 8:30 pm tonight. Read More.

10:02 am – Residential street sweeping continues in Lacombe today. Details here.

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9:54 am – It’s Emergency Preparedness Week. Officials with the Town of Blackfalds want to make sure you and your family are prepared. Find out here.

9:44 am – Residential sweeping will continue in Red Deer today on Grey Routes in the following neighbourhoods: Morrisroe Extension, Morrisroe, Sunnybrook, Anders Park, Anders Park East and Anders South. Click here for details.

9:33 am – So who’s responsible for mowing in Red Deer County? Find out here.

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9:08 am – Blackfalds RCMP have recovered some stolen property that includes an urn with cremated ashes inside. Read More.

8:47 am – A 33 year old Stettler man is facing charges after he was seen fishing from a small boat on Buffalo Lake on Saturday. Fish and Wildlife officials say fishing season is currently closed due to fish spawning and not opening until May 15th. Mounties remind the public that Impaired Driving laws also pertain to boats, off highway vehicles and any other recreational vehicles.

8:19 am – Grade 9 Badminton players from St. Francis of Assisi Middle School will be competing at the CWAJHAA’s today!

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8:11 am – In support of North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week, Grade 4 and 5 students at École Mother Teresa Catholic School in Sylvan Lake will observe today what happens when things go wrong for a distracted student involved in a parking lot collision. The mock incident takes place at 12:00 p.m.

8:04 am – RDC is excited to host students from across Western Canada, who will be attending the annual Alberta Band Association Provincial Festival of Bands from May 8 to 13 and May 15 to 18. About 7,000 Junior, Senior and Community Band students will participate in 10 days of performances, clinics and sight-reading activities.

7:59 am – Some Red Deer Public elementary school students have the chance once again to perform with a professional orchestra tonight! Show times for Choir Kids are 6:00 and 7:30 pm at the New Life Fellowship Church at 20 Kelloway Crescent.

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Human Interest

Huge, deconsecrated Roman Catholic church in N.S. Acadian community now up for sale

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An aerial photo of St. Bernard Roman Catholic Church in St. Bernard, N.S., on the province’s southwestern coast, is seen in an undated handout photo. The deconsecrated church is being sold for an asking price of $250,000, though it will require extensive repairs, says the former church treasurer, Suzanne Lefort. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Travis Baker

By Michael Tutton in Halifax

A huge, deconsecrated Roman Catholic church that has been a landmark to the Acadian community in southwestern Nova Scotia is up for sale.

St. Bernard Church officially closed last summer as the number of people attending mass in the 1,300-square-metre building had fallen to about 30 to 40 people.

It was listed on Thursday for private sale with an asking price of $250,000.

The listing says during the church’s 32-year construction over 8,000 blocks of granite were transported by railroad and oxen from Shelburne, N.S., to the small community 35 kilometres north of Digby. The church officially was completed in 1942.

Its interior is coated in plaster and framed by religious statues, with Douglas fir plywood from British Columbia used in the pews and wall panels.

However, Suzanne Lefort, a former treasurer of the parish council, said in an interview that it’s been estimated last year that thorough repairs would cost over a million dollars for improvements to the roof, water system and the 28,000 cubic metre interior.

“One part of the roof should be shingled, but because of the height you’d need cranes. So what would be a normal shingling job for a roof gets to be much more expensive,” she explained.

“Whoever takes it over will have to put some money into it now.”

Lefort, 72, said she hopes an investor purchases the building and gives it a fresh purpose that benefits the community.

She said she and some other parishioners now attend another Roman Catholic church in the Parish of Notre Dame d’Acadie in Clare, N.S., which is an amalgamation of six parishes.

Jean Le Blanc, the president of the Heritage Society of St. Bernard, said in an interview Saturday he’s hoping that the church will be converted into apartment units that address the shortage of housing in the rural area.

“Hopefully, if somebody does buy it we (the community) will have some input as to what they will actually do with it,” he said.

Le Blanc said a study by an architect had indicated that the building would be viable as a housing development with about 28 units, if the provincial government or donors assisted.

Le Blanc said he’s also hoping that artifacts from the church will find homes within the area, rather than being sold or disposed of.

Lefort said it’s expected that items such as religious statues and a crucifix that was behind the altar will be stored in another parish.

A spokeswoman for the diocese of Halifax-Yarmouth was not immediately available for comment on Saturday evening.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 25, 2023.

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Alberta Premier Danielle Smith says conservatives must learn to win in ‘big cities’

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Alberta Premier Danielle Smith speaks at the Canada Strong and Free Network in Ottawa on Thursday, March 23, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Ottawa (CP) – Alberta Premier Danielle Smith says conservatives must learn how to win in “big cities.”

Smith made the comment to a room of conservatives gathered in Ottawa for the annual conference of the Canada Strong and Free Network, formerly called the Manning Centre.

With Albertans set to go the polls in a provincial election this year, Smith says the United Conservative Party has more ground to gain in the province’s two largest cities: Calgary and Edmonton.

Smith replaced Jason Kenney as party leader and premier last fall, after he resigned following a leadership review where he received only 51 per cent support.

Kenney faced considerable backlash leading up to that vote for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Smith told today’s crowd that the party had lost “a lot” of its base.

Smith’s belief that conservatives must make inroads in large cities is shared by the federal Conservatives, with Leader Pierre Poilievre spending many of his weekends in Metro Vancouver and the Greater Toronto Area — areas where his party has struggled to gain ground in the past several elections.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 23, 2023.

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