Year in Review – November, December/2019


A few days after attending the November 6 council meeting, M.D. Councillor Jeff Commins died. Commins lived in Wagner and was a long-time resident of the area. His first term in office coincided with the 2011 Slave Lake fire. During which, he and then reeve Denny Garratt, went door to door warning people to evacuate.

Cadets at Slave Lake Remembrance Day Service.

The Association of Alberta Forest Management Professionals awarded George Charlebois, of Wagner, for his innovation using drones to photograph cutblocks.

Slave Lake resident gets 15 years for the death of Atikameg man. On November 5, Blake Anderson was convicted of manslaughter for the January 2017 death of Jeff Gladue in Atikameg.

Marginal agricultural land got a new designation in the M.D. of Lesser Slave River. The new definition allows RV parks and other use on land that is designated for farming, but not well suited to it.

In sports, Slave Lake hosted the Diamond Belt boxing competition. All 18 AB Taekwondo students placed at a tournament in Edmonton. The St. Francis of Assisi School Falcon girls won silver at divisionals. After two years of planning, Slave Lake Curling Club hosted a successful cash bonspiel as part of the Peace Curling Tour.

Icedogs play against new High Prairie rivals the Red Wings on November 8. Despite earlier apprehensions in the summer, the Icedogs played two games most weeks starting in October.

Sawridge First Nation was working on approvals for a large solar energy farm. It won a bid for a windfarm in southern Alberta back in Dec. 2018.

Family Fun Day at the Boreal Centre in Lesser Slave Provincial Park north of Slave Lake.

Former Lesser Slave Lake MLA Danielle Larivee was successful in her campaign to be the first vice president of the United Nurses of Alberta. Before and after being MLA she worked as a nurse in Slave Lake.

The Mat Program opened November 27 in the upstairs of Native Friendship Centre. “I am so thankful we didn’t lose anyone,” says Mat Program Coordinator Barb Courtorielle. Renovating the new location required lots of volunteer hours, donations, and community support.

On November 25, the third and final person was convicted for Nicole Robar’s death. Jessica Melinda Davis was sentenced to five years in prison for manslaughter.


December papers were peppered with people donating to Santas Anonymous and the food bank. Also, prevalent were photos of Christmas concerts and other festivities. There’s even a picture of a Christmas tree in the pool.

Slave Lake Koinonia Christian School bought the old forestry building. The plan is to expand the school, which at the moment is bursting at the seams.

Pond hockey in Slave Lake.

On Dec. 4, a body was found in Red Earth Creek. The victim was from Alberta with ties to Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories. People of interest were identified on Dec. 7, their exact connection with the person’s death wasn’t released.

Arctic Winter Games tryouts in Slave Lake.

A new sous chef in Slave Lake is set to publish second cookbook. Sourabh Angarkar has cooked in India, the States and now in Slave Lake. At 13, Angarkar started inventing his own recipes.

Human remains found in 2018 near Slave Lake were identified as Bradley Shaw from Calgary. He went missing in September 2015. An artist’s rendering was release in 2019, which led to an Calgary homicide detective identifying him.

Cruz McGregor and Ethan Baril of Slave Lake and Zaphira Ey of Assineau qualified for the 2020 Arctic Winter Games. Various Roland Michener Secondary School wrestlers qualified for the Alberta Winter Games and the Arctic Winter Games.

December 7 and 8, Icedogs won in Enoch and Wabasca. Throughout the season, some Icedog home games are in Wabasca, where several of the players are from.

Fancy dancing at E.G. Wahlstrom School.

As of the end of December, Slave Lake Midgets 1 have 13 wins and one tie.

On the night of Dec. 4, ATM bandits hit the Multi-Rec centre in Slave Lake. This time they broke two windows instead of one. The rash of ATM robberies started on Nov. 7 in Swan Hills. Nov. 8 an ATM was stolen from a gas station in Slave Lake. High Prairie was hit on Nov. 22.

Lesser Slave Lake Indian Regional Council held an event in Slave Lake to teach kids about the dangers of drugs. The catchy title was ‘Raise the Roof on Drugs’.

St. Mary of the Lake School pagent.

On December 15, a man fell from a Slave Lake roof and died. He was working construction and the death appears to be a workplace accident. He was 31 years old and not from Slave Lake.

The Town of Slave Lake recognized the Slave Lake Gymnastic Association for getting up and running so quickly. The new gymnastic facility is getting lots of use.

Winner of the Fix gingerbread house competition. The contest was a new addition to Moonlight Madness in Slave Lake.

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