Sunday, February 19, 2012

Day 176 Maple Creek, Saskatchewan to Medicine Hat, Alberta

 The sun rises on day 176. Jake and I are heading out of the parking lot at the hotel on the way to our medal bearer meeting point in Irvine, Alberta 

Running east on the trans-Canada highway parallel with the CP rail line.

Irvine is close to the Saskatchewan border, a small rural town of less the 800 people

Redneck automotive?
Probably not a good idea to spend too much time taking this picture.

 This poster was on the wall in the staff lounge. I like rule number 4, male teachers are allowed to take one evening per week for courting puposes, two if they go to church.

Argie (on the participant ops team)  was already there we got there.
Irvine school, home of the tigers (the one on the wall is not real)

School pride

About 500 kids go to this school from kindergarten to grade 12
Jake speaks about the 25th anniversary relay to the medal bearers as friends and family look on.

While we were finishing up the medal bearer meeting, the convoy arrived. All the students were waiting outside, and after a few words about the relay it was time for the relay crew to lead the students in the warm-up dance.

 A slight train delay for the relay as we left the school to drop off the medal bearers at their starting points.

One of our pilots, Andrew, helps Lyn Robert off of the shuttle. Here is a few words about Lyn from his mother:

I am sending this in for my son, Lyn, who has spina bifida and is in a wheelchair. We took my son up to the highway to cheer Rick on when he

went thru Irvine all those years ago. Rick Hansen has been my son's idol ever since. I know he would be so honored to be in the relay. What a

great birthday gift as well. Thank you, Belinda
After we finished with our first group, Jake and I had just enough time to scoot back the 35 kilometres to Medicine Hat to our 2nd medal bearer meeting point of the day.

A glimpse of the Saamis teepee in Medicine Hat, the world's largest

Now there's an old retro motel sign!

Medicine Hat has about 61.000 people and is very distinct in the fact that the older part of town is down in a valley, while the newere parts of Medicine Hat are up on the hills above the valley.

Looking down towards the heritage area, behind the train yard

Our 2nd meeting point was at Medicine Hat High School

The first thing I noticed were these doors just inside the bathroom.
The principal told me it was because of bullying that they had to put lockable doors on the bathroom stalls.

The medal bearer briefing was in one of the computer labs.

thumbs up, ready to go!

My roomie Jeremy was one of the bike escorts today.
Medal bearer Joel, along with his daughters and Jess (medal bearer escort), looking to see if the relay convoy is coming.

And here it comes!

Heading through the downtown core

The law courts building.
The news cameras are waiting as John carries the Rick Hansen medal to city hall for a special ceremony.

The end of day celebration was at the family leisure centre in Medicine Hat. There were more people than there was room at the celebration site, a lot of people watched from out in the hallway.

Quite a few of the medal bearers for Day 176 showed up at the end of day.

Back down into the valley through town to our hotel.
Crossing over the South Saskatchewan River and the rail yard looking towards one of the grain elevators downtown. 

That evening about 8 of us headed out to watch the Medicine Hat Tigers play the Regina Pats  in WHL action.

This is the third time we have seen the Regina Pats play.

The vistor's bench
A little dance competition

Regina wins again.

A dejected Medicine Hat goalie.

On the way out I noticed a torch on display from the Olympic Torch Relay.

And a poster showing one of Medicine Hat's all time greats, Trevor Linden, who was a fan favourite with the Vancouver Canucks and played in the NHL for 19 seasons.

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