Town finalizing plans for Citizen’s Barbecue

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

Citizens of High Prairie and area are invited to the Citizen’s Barbecue June 29 from 11-2 p.m.

Council discussed at length details of the event at a special meeting May 24. Debate centred around whether or not to hold the barbecue June 29 or on Canada Day July 1.

Council first set aside $2,000 in its budget to hold the barbecue at a meeting Dec. 5, details to follow.

Some councillors clearly liked the idea of holding the barbecue during a July 1 celebration at Jaycee Park, seeing last year’s event was so successful. However, lack of time to organize and manpower hindered organizing plans.

Councillor Debbie Rose, who helped organize last year’s July 1 event, wanted the event at Jaycee Park. She also wanted to hire a band and possibly hold other activities similar to last year.

“Councillor Rose has mentioned people would like to see something [for July 1],” Councillor Brian Gilroy noted.

Councillor Arlen Quartly noted recreation staff could keep the stage at Jaycee Park if a band was hired.

Meanwhile, Councillor Judy Stenhouse suggested the golf club or the area’s dance groups could perform or attend to promote their club.

However, Mayor Brian Panasiuk, while liking all the ideas, noted someone would have to lead organizing the event in just over one month.

Rose asked CAO Brian Martinson if staff could help but he replied, “You can’t force them to work holidays.” It is in stark contrast to the annual mid-week barbecue Big Lakes County holds, where staff are very involved in holding the barbecue. By not holding the event on July 1, town staff would be available to help.

Councillor Donna Deynaka wondered why council was trying to complicate the matter. She simply envisioned a barbecue and mingling amongst council, staff and citizens.

“I hadn’t envisioned…a big thing,” she said. “We have a month and I don’t know if there’s enough time.”

Quartly agreed.

“What are we trying to do here? “We‘re trying to thank the citizens of the town.”

He added a July 1 celebration might be confusing to citizens, thinking it was a Canada Day event and not a town appreciation barbecue.

Rose still preferred a Canada Day event.

“We have to leave High Prairie to celebrate Canada Day [Triangle or Joussard],” she said.

She then suggested June 29, which council settled on.

It is proposed the barbecue will be held in the Civic Square area, perhaps in the parking lot. Final details will be announced by council when finalized.


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