CiB Recap presented to Castlegar City Council

Point by point analysis of popular civic spirit-boosting campaign

CiB committee presented Mayor Chernoff with a 5-Bloom plaque. Pictured

A delegation from the local Communities in Bloom effort led off the proceedings at Castlegar City Council’s regular meeting of November, 18.

The group’s comprehensive presentation lasted about 40 minutes.

Council members listened closely to the details of the popular program that seems to work wonders in terms of boosting the self-image of a city or town.

What was apparent from the information dispensed, is that a handful of overachievers just can’t manage to pull off the work required for Castlegar to make it into the upper echelons of awarded communities.

“As many of you probably know, we entered into the inter- national competition this year,” main spokesperson Darlene Kalawsky outlined off the top, “in the medium category.”

Such a jump meant some fairly considerable competition for Castlegar and some valuable lessons were learned, as they have been each year.

The winner in Castlegar’s category was Pembroke Ontario and an honorable mention was awarded to an Italian city.

By way of some background, Kalawsky chronicled how the effort has been going on for ten years.

“We’ve had quite a successful history, actually,” she related. “We won the provincial competition for a community of our size in 2007. The next year we hosted the provincial conference and had over 100 delegates attend.”

A point of interest was the fact that the seed of the highly successful Sculpturewalk program was also germinated back in 2008… “when we began the process of discussing what the Sculpturewalk program could be for Castlegar,” she told council.

Another initiative, the Adopt-a-Road program was also begun through Communities in Bloom, according to Kalawsky, who outline how it, “was basically initiated by the public works department. It’s a wonderful program as you know. It really supports our tidiness.”

Also listed were the bloom and planter affair – which came to life in 2010, as well as ‘enviro-barrier’ baskets, as displayed outside the courthouse, started two years ago.

To summarize, some of the main points asserted by the group (with Mac Gregory also providing the results of an city inspection of his own, complete with photographic evidence) pertained to the desire to get a more far-reaching, sustained effort at cleanliness and beautification going.

They made a pitch to council for some regulatory energy in hopes that it may positively influence property owners and citizens to be more image-aware.

Council appeared to be most supportive of the delegations goals, and agreed to give the ideas some consideration.