June 6th, 2018 ~ Vol. 89 No. 23
Ed Gregor stewardship
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Herald contributor photo
Volunteers building a bench for the Nature Learning Play Space installation at the MDM Community Centre, led by Brighter Futures and the Crowsnest Pass Early Childhood Coalition.
Pass Herald Contributor
This past Saturday, over 140 volunteers joined together to tackle a variety of stewardship projects within the municipality and surrounding forested areas. This year we were blessed with perfect weather (not a drop of rain!) for the day!

For over two decades, the Crowsnest Forest Stewardship Society has coordinated a volunteer stewardship project work day, held on the first Saturday in June. It is called the Ed Gregor Memorial Stewardship Day in honor of Ed’s service in the Land & Forest Division of Alberta Environment and Park for many years and his great love of all forms of recreation and outdoor pursuits. To our knowledge, the Annual Ed Gregor Stewardship Day is the longest running volunteer stewardship program of its kind in Canada. This is something that our community can truly be proud of.

This year’s projects included:

  • Bench installation and footbridge installation at Allison Lake /Chinook Provincial Recreation Area (led by the Crowsnest Forest Stewardship Society)
  • Bench installation and footbridge installation at Allison Lake /Chinook Provincial Recreation Area (led by the Crowsnest Forest Stewardship Society)
  • Barricade installation and clean-up at the Coleman Fish and Game Pond; forestry clean-up (led by the Hillcrest Fish and Game Protective Association)
  • Off-highway vehicle bridge decking on Deadman’s Pass trail and Frank storage clean-up (led by the Crownsest Quad Squad)
  • North Safety Shelter clean-up and other clean-up (led by the Crow Snow Riders)
  • Luge track decommission and clean-up at the Pass Powderkeg Si Hill (led by the Pass Powderkegstaff)
  • 100 m of trail construction and spruce-up of the sills park (led by the UROC - United Riders of Crowsnest Pass)
  • Riparian / community trail clean-up (led by the Crowsnest Conservation Society)
  • Nature Learning Play Space installation (led by Brighter Futures and the Crowsnest Pass Early Childhood Coalition) at MDM Community Centre.
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We also had educational presentations on invasive mussel monitoring in our community, a demonstration by one of the provincial Aquatic Invasive Species K-9 unit sniffer dogs, and an overview presentation about bees by a regional Park Ecologist.

This year again we nearly filled 2 full 40 ft dumpsters, although this time most of the material come from the decommissioning of the old luge track at the ski hill. It is heartening to see how, year after year, that the groups seem to have a harder time filling the dumpsters with general forestry clean-up.

The success of the stewardship day lies in the incredible support that the Crowsnest Forest Stewardship Society receives from our sponsors, the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass, Alberta Environment and Parks and Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. The Coleman Lions and Blairmore Lions generously donate their time to cook a hot breakfast and dinner for volunteers. Each group that coordinates an even helps through planning and organizing, and many provide fiscal support or donate prizes. This year Riversdale Resources and Shell Canada provided generous fiscal donations to help cover the costs of food, facility costs, and project materials. We are ever thankful for the many local businesses that support the day with prize donations that allow us to reward participants for a long-days work.
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For myself, the Ed Gregor Stewardship Day has become a family tradition. My brother and I have been out for the day since our teens, and now we bring a new generation of our family (my niece) out to help as well. I know we are not the only family that has continued to come out each year, also instilling a stewardship ethic in our young forest users through example.

The Crowsnest Forest Stewardship Society is looking forward to 2019 and the 25th Annual Ed Gregor Stewardship Day. We are both looking back on our past successes, and looing to the future as there have been many changes in land use management in the Crowsnest Forest area this past year. WE would love to hear from past participants their favourite stewardship project, and if you have photos to share from previous years, we would love to see them as we are considering ways to share these memories! Please send them to crowsnestforest@gmail.com. As always, the stewardship society welcomes ideas from other groups or individuals that we can incorporate into a future volunteer day to help promote sustainable multi-use, stewardship education,
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June 6th, 2018 ~ Vol. 89 No. 23
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