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Alberta

Flames and Oilers Battle of Alberta brings in a Million dollars for the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre

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News Release from the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre

Records Broken for the CACAC Battle of Alberta

The Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre held their signature event: The Battle of Alberta for the second time this past Tuesday and Wednesday after being postponed for a year, grossing over $1M!

The CACAC Battle of Alberta Charity Golf Tournament is a two-day event presented by the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames. The two notorious rivals come together with one goal in mind – helping our children by bringing together both alumni and current players to battle it out on the green!

“The past 18 months have been extremely challenging and have certainly brought Mental Health even more to the forefront than it had already become before COVID. The fact that the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre is in the Mental Health sector it is fitting that we are having one of the first events post COVID.”Terry Loewen, Board Chair, CACAC

The first night of the BOA includes a celebrity auction hosted at the Cambridge Hotel & Conference Centre, and this year records broke with highest bid for the top two players: Kelly Buchberger and Theoren Fleury. Twenty-eight other Oilers & Flames joined in to cap-off the 30 team roster, including: Lanny MacDonald, Louie Debrusk, Kris Russell, Glenn Anderson, and Mike Vernon. The Luau-themed event also included exclusive hot-stoves with Brian Burke, and was co-hosted by Danny Hooper and Ron Maclean.

“The Calgary Flames and the Calgary Flames Alumni are always so grateful for the support we receive from our fans in Central Alberta. We consider Red Deer our home that we happily share with our rivals in Edmonton during this important fundraising event in support of the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre. Congratulations to Terry Loewen and his hard-working committee on another extremely successful Battle of Alberta Golf Tournament. And a special thank you to Flames alumnus Sheldon Kennedy for his leadership in changing the way Alberta responds to child abuse. This new facility in Red Deer will ensure every child’s needs are met, and they are supported in the most child-friendly way.”

– Rollie Cyr, Executive Vice-President, Calgary Flames

The golf tournament was hosted at the beautiful Red Deer Golf and Country Club, where the 30 teams teed off with their celebrity players and caddies. Every hole was sponsored by local community organizations and included activities, draws, food and beverages, along with stories of the old days by alumnus and talks about the upcoming season with the current players.

“It was truly incredible to see the community come together for the Battle of Alberta Golf Tournament in support of the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Center (CACAC) in Red Deer. What the CACAC is doing to help children and families in central Alberta is remarkable, and they’re making a difference for so many children in need of support. The entire Oilers Entertainment Group and Oilers Alumni are proud to support central Alberta and the CACAC, and you can bet we’re already looking forward to the tournament in 2023.” –Bob Nicholson, Chairman, Edmonton Oilers

The event concluded with the After Party back at the Cambridge where another two hot-stoves took place, along with a record-shattering live auction and newly added virtual silent auction.

“To say we’re blown away by the generosity and support at the child advocacy centre is an understatement. As an organization, we could not have had three better events over the two days to celebrate the work we do for children. At the end of the day, we’re trying to make a difference for children and families in Central Alberta. What we witnessed at this event is what happens when a whole group of difference makers come together for the good of a community. A heartfelt thanks to the many people who helped make the Battle of Alberta tournament a success.”

– Mark Jones, CEO, CACAC

Another new stand out addition to the Battle of Alberta was the donation of two custom trucks to the Live Auction! A fully custom, one-of-a-kind Calgary Flames truck and Edmonton Oilers truck, both valued over $90,000 were given to the CACAC to auction off.

Dan Wiebe of Integrity Group of Companies heard about the work that the CACAC was doing and wanted to be involved. Dan enlisted the help of friend Brad Rempel of Alberta Boys Custom to customize an Edmonton Oilers truck specially for the BOA Live Auction!

After the donation of the Oilers truck, a few of our supporters wanted to ensure the “C of Red” was represented! Together, Rob McWilliams of McWilliam Auto Appraisals, Garrett Scott of Kipp Scott GMC, TNT Customs, and Dave Appleby of Vibe Audio came together to create their very own exclusive Calgary Flames Truck for the 2021 Battle of Alberta Live Auction. Both trucks were auctioned off Wednesday night with 100% of the proceeds going to the CACAC.

The CACAC is overwhelmed with the success of the event – and the support of the community. Final numbers are still coming in with net proceeds to be calculated in the coming weeks, but the CACAC is proud to say that over $1,000,000 gross was raised in two nights with a small but mighty group of people. Not only was money raised for the CACAC, going towards specific projects like the upcoming building project, but awareness was raised; conversations were had, and everyone stood up to be a voice for the children in our community who need it most.

The CACAC would like to thank every single donor, participant and volunteer who had a part in the 2021 Battle of Alberta.

“I want to thank all of you for your participation and sponsorships. I’m not sure if people fully realize the magnitude of their impact; the lives they change or lives they have saved by supporting this organization! You are all champions of the CACAC – thank you! – Terry Loewen, Board Chair, CACAC 

The CACAC would like to recognize the following donors with special thanks to the committee and volunteers (Listed in randomized order):

Presenting, Major & Event Sponsors:

Edmonton Oilers | Calgary Flames | Integrity Group of Companies | D.J. Will Holdings | Alberta Boys Custom | McWilliam Auto Appraisals | Cambridge Hotel & Conference Centre | Eagle Builders | Kipp Scott GMC Cadillac Buick | Vibe Audio | Blue Grass 

Sponsors:

HPC High Performance Coatings, Flo-Pro Performance Exhaust, Waschuk Pipeline, MNP,  GSC Energy Services,  Electric Horsepower,  Scotia Wealth Management: Keylock Group, Gallagher Insurance, White Swan Environmental Ltd., ATB,  Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation, Scotia Wealth Management: Calgary, Marshall Construction Company, Cody Snyder Bullbustin’, Earth Smart, Precede Occupational Health Services, Q2 ALS, Blackfalds Bulldogs,  Red Deer Motors, Phone Experts,  Jedco, Glover Trucks, The Liquor Hutch,  Fourlane Ford, Ing + McKee Insurance, Bill Hull, Canadian Western Bank, Rogers Insurance, Cilantro & Chive, Tiffany’s Steakhouse, Shek Crane, Mal’s Diner, Chiefs, Molson Beer, Earls, Bo’s Bar and Grill, Culligan Water, Red Deer Golf & Country Club, Cooperators, Deerfoot Inn & Casino, TRC Auctions, Riverview Insurance, Abbey Platinum Master Built, Four Star Drywall, Pivotal LLP, Care Industries, Servus Credit Union, ViTreo, Melcor, Tar-ific Construction, Red Deer Discount Golf, The Coverall Shop, P.J.M. Home Advantage, Alberta Parking Lot Services, Adrenaline Exotics, General Appliances, Parkland Funeral Homes ,BJ Bobcat Trucking Ltd., Aesthetic Solutions, Apollo Landscaping Compass Geomatics, Big 105 & Rewind Radio, Gasoline Alley Harley-Davidson, Al Sim Remax, League Projects, The Zukiwsky Group, True Spirits Mobile Bar, Ten02, Willson Audio Visual, Ash Maclean Photography, Danny Hooper Productions, Prospector Visual,  Haywork Secure Driving Services/Douglas Workman, Central Alberta Tile One, Duane Sokalski, Theoren Fleury, Grant Fuhr, Reid & Wright Advertising, Andrew Hutchins, Calgary Flames Foundation, Toast of the Town, Todayville, Trevor Roszell, Nucleus Energy Services, John Macphail, Kelly Hallgren, Laebon Homes, Johnston Ming Manning, Printing Place, Red Deer Rebels, Safari Spa & Salon, Flames TV, Oilers TV, SN960, OilersNOW, Rivertown, Chainsaw Spirit plus our incredible Silent Auction sponsors (check them out here!)

 

Please visit centralalbertacac.ca to learn more about the community support services the CACAC offers. Collectively, we can end child abuse.

After 15 years as a TV reporter with Global and CBC and as news director of RDTV in Red Deer, Duane set out on his own 2008 as a visual storyteller. During this period, he became fascinated with a burgeoning online world and how it could better serve local communities. This fascination led to Todayville, launched in 2016.

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Alberta

Cheese not on the table in Canada-U.K. trade talks as Britain seeks market access

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OTTAWA — The British foreign secretary has often been mocked for her preoccupation with cheese. It started eight years ago when Liz Truss expressed outrage in a speech to her party’s annual conference. 

“We import two thirds of our cheese,” she raged. “That is a disgrace.”

Now Truss is facing another battle over cheese, this time with Canada. 

Britain wants greater access to Canadian markets for more than 700 varieties of cheese including Stilton, Cheshire, and Wensleydale, a crumbly variety originating from Yorkshire. 

But Ottawa has made it clear it does not want to see more British cheddar, let alone artisan varieties such as stinking bishop, renegade monk and Hereford hop, on Canadian fridge shelves. 

During the first round of negotiations of the U.K.-Canada trade deal, Canada told Britain that a larger quota for British cheese is not on the negotiating table.

When it was a European Union member, Britain was part of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with Canada, giving it some access to Canada’s cheese market. 

After the U.K. left the EU, a “continuity agreement” with Canada was swiftly put in place to maintain the CETA arrangement until a bilateral trade deal could be struck. 

Ralph Goodale, Canada’s high commissioner to the U.K., said if Britain wants more access to Canadian markets for its cheese as part of a bilateral free-trade agreement, it will have to knock on Brussels’ door and get its part of the dairy quota back. 

“The point is we have already provided that volume in the EU deal and the British left it there without taking it with them,” he said in an interview. “That’s an issue they need to resolve with the Europeans because the Europeans have their quota.” 

Goodale said the U.K.’s request for extra access for British cheese — on top of the access given to the EU — is “what the Canadian negotiators consider to be pretty much a dead end.”

“You are talking about a double concession — one we have already made to the EU and the request is being made by the U.K. for yet another one on top of that,” he said. 

The high commissioner said Canada values its trading relationship with the U.K., adding that he is confident that a mutually-beneficial trade deal will be reached.

But if Canada allows the British to export more of their cheese it would involve “a major commitment of compensation to dairy producers” in Canada to make up for lost incomes.  

In 2018, after the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement gave the U.S. fresh access to the Canadian dairy market, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he would compensate Canadian dairy farmers.

Canada’s dairy industry was worth over $7 billion in 2020, according to the Canadian Dairy Commission’s annual report. 

There are over 10,000 dairy farms in Canada — most of them in Quebec and Ontario — with an average of 92 cows per farm, it said. 

Until at least the end of next year, Britain will be able to keep exporting its cheese to Canada under the trade continuity agreement, the U.K.’s trade department said. 

This allows U.K. cheese exporters to access the Canadian market tariff-free under the EU portion of Canada’s World Trade Organization cheese tariff rate quota. 

As part of the 1995 WTO agreement on agriculture, Canada established tariff rate quotas for cheese and other dairy products. The quotas set out quantities of dairy that could enter Canada with little or no duty. 

For Britain, a fully fledged free trade deal with Canada is crucial after Brexit left it looking for fresh tariff-free markets.

“We want to negotiate an ambitious and comprehensive new agreement with Canada that will strengthen our close and historic bilateral trade relationship,” said a U.K. government trade spokesman in a statement, adding the relationship was worth about $34.5 billion in 2021.

In March, U.K. Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan flew to Canada to announce with Canada’s Trade Minister Mary Ng that bilateral negotiations had officially begun. 

In a speech in the House of Lords in London earlier this month, Goodale reported on progress in the talks, saying that “both sides are optimistic that, as good as CETA and the continuity agreement were, we can do better still when Canada and the U.K. negotiate a deal face-to-face, directly with each other.” 

Like Goodale, Ng said Canada is confident a free-trade deal with Britain will be reached, enhancing co-operation in a number of areas, including on renewables, sustainability and the digital economy.  

“Canada values the relationship with the United Kingdom. They are … an important trading partner and a trade agreement with the U.K. will be very good for Canadian businesses,” she said in a phone interview from Thailand last weekend.

But she was also firm about the need to protect Canada’s dairy producers, and that means keeping more British cheese out. 

“I have been very clear, our government has been very clear, that we will not provide access to our supply-managed sector,” she said. “We have been clear about that from the get-go.” 

The Canadian dairy sector now produces 1,450 varieties of cheese, including ewe, goat and buffalo varieties, as well as the cheese curds used in the Québécois dish poutine.

At least half of Canada’s cheese is made in Quebec, which is home to a number of artisan varieties including bleu l’ermite, or blue hermit, and Oka, a popular semi-soft rind cheese.

Pierre Lampron, president of the Dairy Farmers of Canada, has made it clear he will fiercely protect Canadian cheese from British interlopers.

Lampron said he had “validated that the issue of access to the Canadian dairy market was not on the agenda of these trade talks.”

Canada’s protectionist stance toward its dairy industry may have pleased farmers. But it has caused some tension with close allies. 

Earlier this month, New Zealand launched a formal trade dispute against Canada, accusing the federal government of breaking promises to give access for dairy imports under the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement.

The Biden administration also recently said it was asking for a second dispute settlement panel under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement to review a trade dispute with Canada over dairy import quotas.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 26, 2022. 

Marie Woolf, The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Judge decides ‘Freedom Convoy’ organizer Tamara Lich stays out on bail

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OTTAWA — Tamara Lich, a key organizer of the “Freedom Convoy” protest that gridlocked Ottawa for weeks, will remain released on bail while awaiting trial, a judge ruled Wednesday.

Ontario Superior Court Justice Kevin Phillips said he made his decision because she has followed her bail conditions, her surety has supervised her well and she’s already had a “taste of jail,” which he said lowered her risk to reoffend.

The judge said he does not accept that Lich breached her release conditions by agreeing to receive an award, and added Lich can be trusted to respect the conditions of her release.

She was released in March with a long list of conditions, including a ban from all social media and an order not to “support anything related to the Freedom Convoy.”

The terms of Lich’s release were intended to prevent a similar protest from happening in the national capital, the judge said, adding the court does not seek to control people’s political views.

“The courts are not a thought police. We seek only to control conduct to the extent that certain behaviour will violate or likely lead to violation of the law,” he said.

The protest is over and has left Ottawa, he said, adding it would be “practically impossible” to mount a similar protest in the city again.

Lich’s lawyer, Lawrence Greenspon, said in an interview Wednesday that he was pleased with the decision.

“She’ll be able to conduct her life in a lot more normal fashion as a result of the judge’s ruling,” said Greenspon.

Moiz Karimjee, a Crown prosecutor, said last week that Lich violated one of her bail conditions by agreeing to accept an award for her leadership during the Ottawa protest, and should be sent back behind bars to wait for her trial.

Greenspon argued last week her bail conditions should be loosened to allow her to come to Ontario and use social media.

He told the court that the social media ban imposed on Lich was unnecessarily broad and has had a huge impact on her life while she’s been out of custody.

However, Phillips said Wednesday the ban on Lich’s access to social media is warranted.

“Social media can be a problematic feedback loop where people get egged on and caught up in group activity they would never perform on their own,” he said.

Social media “undoubtedly contributed to and even drove” Lich’s conduct related to the protest, and her separation from it is necessary to lower her risk of reoffending, said Phillips.

Noting that Lich is in her late 40s, Phillips said she should be able to remember “how to use the social skills she surely built up before the advent of the internet.”

Lich is able to communicate by many other means, including email, phone or meeting in person, he said.

Greenspon said while he would have liked to see the social media ban reversed, “the most important thing was the rejection of the Crown’s efforts to to put her back in jail for agreeing to accept an award.”

The judge did amend her release conditions to allow her to visit Ottawa.

Lich’s motivation for coming to the city cannot be disclosed because it is under a court-ordered publication ban.

Phillips reiterated the high unlikelihood that Lich could organize an event resembling the convoy protest.

While she’s permitted to come to Ottawa, Lich is not allowed to visit the downtown core so as not “to walk around the very neighbourhoods she is alleged to have traumatized,” he said, except to attend court or meet with legal counsel.

Lich and fellow protest organizer Chris Barber are jointly accused of mischief, obstructing police, counselling others to commit mischief and intimidation.

The “Freedom Convoy” protest evolved into a weeks-long demonstration that congested the streets of Ottawa in February.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 25, 2022.

———

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Meta and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

Erika Ibrahim, The Canadian Press

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