Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Day 178 and 179 Medicine Hat to Bow Island to Taber, Alberta

Day 178, leaving the parking lot of our hotel in Medicine Hat (in the background) after a 3 day stay.

We will be taking the Trans-Canada highway to Calgary soon enough, but today Kyle and I will take highway 3                 (the Crows nest) to a medal bearer meeting point in Seven Persons, Alberta.

Outside the school, nothing but blue skies.
Kyle does not need the relay warm-up dance, he had found his own way to get ready for our medal bearer meeting.

Some of the student's artwork on display. 

Back when Rick Hansen's original Man in Motion World tour came through Alberta, the government came up with a unique fundraising idea. They offered for sale 1000 token kilometres at $100 per kilometre. They raised $100,000. Seven Persons school purchased KM #534 and had it on display at the school.

Here the students were outside cheering on the arrival of the relay.

Jim, (our executive director) was a bike escort day.
Our three medal bearers today were all students at the school. While they were outside, Kyle was getting their uniforms ready.

and here is the future of our country, Cassidy, Abby, and Troy!

This poster in the school refers to the grade 5 students recycling over 20 tons of newsprint. This initiative is throught the Seeds Foundation

A blurry shot of our endurance athlete Lonnie, and the medal bearers waiting in the hallway to start the relay in Seven Persons.. (kind of like their "green room")

Most of the student body followed along with the medal bearers as they made their way along the streets of Seven Persons.

Even though the  end of day celebration for the relay was in Bow Island, our home for the next 6 nights will be at the Lethbridge Lodge.

A large fertilizer plant outside of Bow Island.
Cruisin' past Bow Island, population about 2,000

Back down Highway 3 towards Lethbirdge. Like Montana, big sky country.

McCain potato processing plant near Coaldale, Alberta

This grain elevator is in Tempest, although I did not see any signs of a town around there.
Heading into Lethbridge, this large grain terminal was within the city limits. Lethbridge has a population of over 80,000

Hard to see, but behind the hotel is view of the High Level railway bridge, the longest trestle bridge in the world at 1.6 kilometres.

 On the way out of Lethbridge on day 179.  The start of day on the 25th anniversary Rick Hansen relay was in Bow Island, but Kyle and I had a meeting point in Grassy Lake, Alberta, about 85 KM away.

This restaurant is in Lethbridge, it is a converted water tower.
clear sailing
our advance team seen here advancing past us.

Pulling into the Grassy Lake community hall. Grassy Lake is another small town with a population of less than 500 

Russ ( on our community engagement team) is hanging in the kitchen with the volunteers who made lunch for the community and the relay staff today. I love the spirit in these smaller towns.

Behind the community hall. Nothing but farmland for as far as the eye could see.
There were only 3 medal bearers to carry the Rick Hansen 25th anniversary medal in Grassy Lake, and they were all students. These kids are also part of the local mennonite community. Margarita, Abe, and Eve represented their community and their school well.

Russ is showing the difference makers and their friends and siblings some of the videos taken during the relay.

On the shuttle bus, Kyle and I showed the kids some of the videos from the original Rick Hansen Man in Motion tour as well as a message from Rick.

And they all walked together for the Grassy Lake segment of the relay.
After a brief ceremony in the hall celebrating the difference makers, it was time for the crew to enjoy the soup and sandwiches provided by the community volunteers.

Needs a little paint.

After end of day celebration, it was back to the hotel in Lethbridge. I have a new roomie this week, Russ. Here he is showing off the pipe collection he scored at an antique store in Winnipeg.

I got a chance to say hi to his mom while they were having a Skype conversation.
He showed me this classic piece on you tube of him entertaining the crowds at Canada's Wonderland in Toronto, circa 1982
Day 179 is over.

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