Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Day 165 Indian Head to Regina, Saskatchewan

Day 165, a big day on the 25th anniversary relay as Rick Hansen is back with us for a couple of  days before he heads up to Saskatoon and then back to Vancouver. It was an early start as I  had to pick-up my shuttle bus at the oversize parking lot and birng it back to the hotel to pick up Kyle.

Heading east to our first and only medal bearer meeting point of the day in White City, a bedroom community of Regina. The relay day for the people on the convoy started in Indian Head, with our end of Day celebration at City Square Plaza in downtown Regina..

The White City community centre was our meeting spot.

Eight difference makers being honored in the community today.

Here MB #15, Roberta proudly poses with her family. She has two twin boys, one who is confined to a wheelchair, the other is able bodied. They both compete in wheelchair basketball, and her and her husband do a lot of volunteer work.

The billboard included a relay promotional poster and one of the Rick Hansen foundation magazines, "In Motion"
Every medal bearer's story is important,  they all very deserving of the honor of carrying the Rick Hansen medal. I will include two of the stories, Samantha (3rd from left at the back) and Andrew (front left) :

Samantha: it all started when my dad was in the hospital he only 10% chance to live. i went trough weeks and weeks of not any thing good happening i

remember breaking down and crying in the hallways of the cold hospital. i grew up a lot going in to the ICU seeing lots of people coming in but

not a lot coming out. since than i started high school i became stronger with every thing i do i am even on the cheerleading team and skip of

my curling team, but even my work i do in the class room it has improved so much. but now i have a much better understanding of life and the

things around me and i live each day just like if it where my last.Leading and encouraging others to live a healthy and active lifestyle – Through

sport, injury prevention or involvement in medical research for new innovations.

 and Andrew: I was born with Spina Bifida. Its something I've had to deal with my entire life. I've lead as much of a normal life as possible. I've proven that if

you want something, you go for it no matter what the barriers and you find a way to overcome them. I had the opportunity to attend a Rick

Hansen event during the Man in Motion Tour and it inspired to me to reach my goals and dreams no matter what. I haven't let anything get in

my way. I graduated high school and went on to complete a post secondary course in Accounting and when things got tough I was reminded of

the end goal. In 2005 I furthered my education and became a Certified Management Accountant which is more than I was ever expected to

accomplish as there was a chance that I wouldn't survive from birth. In 2008 I was quite ill with kidney stones and even though I was extremely

sick I was determined to get my health back and resume my normal life once again. 11 weeks later I was healthy and regaining my life again.

Today I am fortunate to have a wonderful wife and family, a great job, and enjoying life in White City, SK and fortunate to be able to travel

abroad. Every day is a gift and no matter what anyone's opinion was I was determined to reach my life goals and will continue to do so into the


the view from my side mirror on the shuttle bus as the convoy and the medal bearer approaches.

Our pilot Andrew surveys the scene as we await the signal to drop the next difference makers.

A beautiful winter day in White City

Jordan from our events team rode along with us on the shuttle. Here he is peeling one of the number stickers off of a cold street sign. The medal bearers like to keep the stickers as souvenirs.

The GPS route back to Regina is the same route the pilot vehicle was taking us through White City
A family cheering section along the route

Back to Regina, Kyle and I have to help out at the end of day celebration event.

but first we dropped the bus back at the indoor parking and got a ride back to the hotel. The end of day is only two blocks from the hotel.

The Brandt centre complex includes a lot of buildings used for hockey, concerts, sporting events, special events and agricultural exhibitions.

Ad add for the Regina Pats a junior team who play in the Western Hockey League
I went back to my room for a minute and out the window on the 16th floor I spied the Relay going by on the street below. You can just make out the medal bearers.

Walking towards the end of day celebration

The City Square included an ice skating rink.

The square is right in the middle of the downtown core.

Part of the entertainment was this figure skating demonstration from the local club.
The final medal bearer of the day, Marlene, is greeted by dignitaries and Rick Hansen.

Rick Hansen gives another one of his heartfelt and inspirational speeches. It amazes me how he can deliver so fluidly without any written notes or material.

A pic through the plexiglass case containing a replica of the 25th anniversary medal.

Quite a few of the 49 medal bearers than ran today showed up for the end of day celebration and a chance to meet Rick.

But to do that they had to earn it. That means doing our warm-up dance, led by Rick himself today, to the tune of Katy Perry's "Firework"
The sun sets on day 165

Later that evening 20 of the relay crew went to Regina Pats hockey game against the Lethbridge Hurricanes. We were given complimentary tickets and Rick Hansen was invited as a V.I.P. and participated in a ceremonial puck drop at center ice.

Most of our relay staff were in the visitor's end zone. (10 shown here, 4 beside Jordan in the striped shirt and the 5 above them in the next row)

These two decided to do a little dance of their own.
Our transport manager Don was randomly chosen to answer a trivia question and win a prize, but  he turned the tables on me by telling the crowd of around 3,000 that it was my birthday (and it was), thanks a lot, Don!

Rick enjoying the game down at ice level.

Between the periods there was a sledge hockey exhibition.

A few more of the gang hanging around Jake in the wheelchair section.

Jordan, Kayla and Barn have "a" beer. They actually sold 32 ounce beers here!

A good crowd and good hockey, unfortunately the home team lost 3-2
Afterwards we went to the Bushwakker brew pub to celebrate my birthday.

I was feeling about as fuzzy as this picture by the time we got back to the hotel. (thanks for the drinks, relay team)(I think) The good news for me was that Sunday was a day off from the relay.

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