Sylvan’s Centennial has already created tremendous memories but it’s not over yet

We’ve got to echo the comment by Sylvan Lake Centennial committee chairperson Brenda Dale - WOW!

We’ve got to echo the comment by Sylvan Lake Centennial committee chairperson Brenda Dale – WOW!

Sylvan Lake’s major celebrations of 100 years as a municipality over the past two weeks were amazing.

Steeped in family fun, the events brought the community together to experience the best party of the century — for this the many, many amazing volunteers of our community must be thanked profusely.

Four years ago when planning first began to mark this milestone, we’re sure no one could have predicted the fantastic success of events like the Dance of the Century, the Parade of the Century and so much more.

And embrace the visions that were created, our residents and visitors certainly did.

The costumes worn leading up to the weekend and then during the parade and dance were astounding. Certainly a lot of work and ingenuity went into the search for or creation of the finery.

Events over the past two weeks provided many opportunities to reflect on our history as a community, and for people to use their unique talents to contribute to the celebrations.

Whether it was the seniors drama troupe portraying events of the Women’s Institute which constructed a pier, or the informative performance of a large cast who led us through Sylvan Lake’s growth during the Centennial Jubilee June 8, we were impressed with the contributions of everyone involved. Then there was a chance to learn about over $22 million invested in redevelopment along Lakeshore Drive and in Centennial Park with rededication of Centennial Park last Wednesday.

All these events built to the finale of a weekend that will not soon be forgotten. Again we must say a huge thank you to all the people who made things happen. To those with the vision and those who took on leadership roles to make things happen. To those who participated in the background. And of course to everyone who attended the events — without you our celebration would not have been infused with the enthusiasm and effervescence that so strongly contributed to the memories that were created.

Memories will certainly last with several of the projects. The hundreds of hours put into creating history boards and the stories they tell will be a lasting reminder of our community’s many groups and organizations.

A legacy art project which will eventually be displayed in our new town hall will be unveiled later this year. It’s the creation of a whole bunch of Grade 7 students working with an artist to create something they’ll be able to come back and look at for years to come.

A quartet of themed quilts featuring the beach front of Sylvan Lake, created Sylvan Lake Quilters and spearheaded by Joyce Thrush, Chloe Lester and Gloria Armstrong, were presented to the town for hanging in the new town hall during the quilt show on the weekend.

Musically, Sylvan Lake’s dance hall history was remembered, as the talents of our rising stars from École H. J. Cody High School contributed during the jubilee. There were so many other musicians who participated in dance, bringing to life each decade of the past century through their music.

To Brenda Dale and her committee, our most profound thanks for the work you’ve done and the work still to be done. And to everyone else, again we say “Wasn’t that a party?” Certainly a party worthy of a burgeoning community of 13,000 that has created memories for millions of people in its past.

It’s interesting to note, however, that the party’s not over yet.

We’re just beginning the summer season when we’ll be hosting hundreds of thousands of tourists. Our festivals — Shake The Lake action sports and music festival and Jazz At The Lake take place in August. Sports such as slo-pitch, baseball, volleyball, triathlon, sailing and more will attract people to our beautiful lakeside.

Then there are more Centennial events planned. The community picnic early in September and then Sylvan Lake’s participation in Alberta Art and Culture Days at the end of the month.

Fall events will lead into winter with the 2nd annual Sylvan Spirit of Yuletide Festival and to conclude the year, the Legion’s New Year’s Eve Dance. Surely there are so many more events than we’ve not mentioned. The bottom line though is our community is active and our volunteers are amazing in their dedication and in their enthusiasm to so many different events.