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Pat Potvin tells us he’s participating in his 20th MS 150 bike ride this year. He started doing it back in the late 1990s to support Canadians affected by multiple sclerosis. Then in 2010 his niece was diagnosed with MS.
“She is the main reason I ride every year, says the 63-year-old Slave Lake resident. “Please support me in the MS Bike by making a secure donation online or make a contribution to me in person…every little bit helps.”
You can call him at 780-849-2232.


The Town of Slave Lake’s Naming Committee has been keeping its oar in the water, so to speak. In the past year or so it has made recommendations to council on adding the names of prominent community members/pioneers to a street, a park, a trail system and a health care centre. Two have so far been accepted – those being Barton Park and the Allarie Trails. Suggestions to name the health care centre after legendary public health nurse Laura Attrux and a street after Leo and Stella Boisvert are pending.
Next up on the naming committee agenda is to consider a name or names for the industrial area (or areas) of town. A recommendation may or may not come out of it, but suggestions from the public are always welcome. These can be made to Briana LaChance at the town office.


An organization that is trying to figure out how loons are doing is asking for volunteers to monitor lakes and report how many loons they see. Bird Studies Canada has been doing the Canadian Lakes Loon Survey since 1981 and apparently doesn’t have enough volunteers or information. So if you go canoeing or fishing or simply stop by a lake and see a loon with chicks, somebody would like to know about it. Birdscanada.org is the place to sign up.


New Gilwood Golf Club manager Tony Griffi is coming up with new ways to have fun at the golf course this season. In one of his recent mail-outs he talks about something called the ‘Outlaw Step-Aside Scramble,’ which he’s planning for an event called ‘Spring Mixer.’ It would be a huge success, says Tony, “if we got 60 people to sign up.” It’ll be for members and guests. No date was mentioned.
In the same email Tony also talks about a ‘beat the pro’ competition this summer and an ‘ironperson’ team event.
“As we grow I have a lot of other ideas,” he says.


Here’s an odd question: has bird song changed in the past 30 years as it is used in mating behaviour? Somebody is coming to Slave Lake this summer to study that very thing, all the way from Manchester New Hampshire, U.S.A. Either that, or we fell for an April Fool’s joke, via email. It was sent on April 2 though. Could be real.
By the way, if anybody has copies of the Lakeside Leader from June of 1985, Jay Pitocchelli of Anselm College (he’s the bird study guy) would like to get a copy of a story he says was in there about research he did in or around Slave Lake back then. We don’t have copies of The Leader from those years, sad to say.


Okay, it’s time for another short lesson on names in Slave Lake. People will call things what they want, but town councillors need to lead by example. So they should be calling ‘Rennie’ Hall Plaza that, and not ‘René’ Hall Plaza. The guy’s name was Rennie. English, not French. Or maybe Scottish. Rennie is apparently not short for anything. By the way, there was one male baby named Rennie in Alberta in 2018. Two were named ‘Renly’ (the Game of Thrones effect).
Then there’s ‘Schurter’ Park. Not CJ Schurter Park. The school got Charlie (‘Mr. Slave Lake)’s initials; the park didn’t. End of story.


The Rotary’s NHL playoff pool – yes the playoffs start this Wednesday, April 10. Which probably means you still have time to get in on it. Alimo’s Pizzeria is Playoff Pool Central; you can purchase entry forms, pick your 16 players and submit the forms there – as long as you do it before puck drop in the first game on April 10.


As you know, we’ve been looking at the baby-naming trends in Alberta, thanks to a handy online archive of all the names given to babies in the province since 1990. Last week the idea occurred to see if the popularity of Game of Thrones is influencing name choices. Turns out it is – not hugely, but it’s definitely there.
‘Arya’ leads the way – 28 kids got that name in Alberta in 2018 – 44 if you include alternate spellings. The next most-popular Game of Thrones name we found was Meera – a fairly minor character. Also showing up were Sansa, Theon, Jorah, Bronn, Tommen, Davos and Daenerys (one each). Renly (the ill-fated pretender to the throne) showed up three times – twice on the boys’ side and once on the girls.’
Not a single Cersei, though.

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