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That 33 below zero morning on Monday, Feb. 25 took a few people by surprise. We thought that stuff was over with! Maybe it is, by now. Then again, maybe it isn’t.

Some people who may know what they are talking about say it’s going to stay cold for some time still, and then spring will come in a rush.

Bad news came last week from down Strathmore way. Former Slave Laker (and Lakeside Leader employee) Lesley Geiger died in February after a short battle with cancer. Her friend Marilyn Larivee let us know about it.

“She did it the right way,” says Marilyn.

Lesley was an avid Scrabble player, who if we’re not mistaken was the winner of the inaugural Scrabble tournament organized in Slave Lake in the early 2000s. If someone were to be ambitious enough to organize another one, we’re suggesting it could be called the Lesley Geiger Memorial Tournament. Just putting that out there.

People have been asking, so we went down to the river and got the answer: yes, the lonely swan is still there, or was a few days ago. It was pretty close to being iced in on that morning after a 33-below night, but appeared to be feeding energetically, as sheets of thin new ice floated past.

As reported in last week’s Leader, organizers of the Junior A hockey team for Slave Lake are holding a naming contest. The winning suggestion gets season tickets and the privilege of dropping the puck for the opening game next fall.

Entry into the contest is on the brand new team website, a

The Metis Nation of Alberta is doing a push to get people to register for membership in the organization. Ads on it may be appearing in this edition of The Leader or the next one. What we know is some people from the Edmonton office of the MNA will be in Slave Lake on March 14 to promote the registration drive. Details on where and when we don’t have yet.

The benefits of membership are set out for all to read on the MNA website, on the ‘Registry & Genealogy’ page. There are all sorts of tips there on why to become a signed-up member and how to do it.

We hear Barb Courtorielle at the Friendship Centre whipped up some of the best bannock in town for the Chamber of Commerce meeting last week. The Chamber is trying out something new by holding its monthly meetings at the SLNFC. Barb’s bannock may keep them coming back.

The Rotary Club’s ‘Family Feud’ event is selling so well – we hear – that after this week tickets might be hard to come by. So don’t hesitate; call Harry Bartlett today, at 780-805-0482.

In other Rotary news, the annual NHL Playoff Pool is now for sale, Bartlett says.

Hanging in there…the swan that stuck around for the winter.

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