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Captain's Blog - President's Message August 8, 2023

On July 7th , 2023 we became official!


Our incorporation papers arrived in the mail and our little group of volunteers had a BIG celebration. It’s a major step for any group of people to complete but especially so for a neighborhood group such as ourselves. Our county has a strong and proud rural league presence but the Sherwood Heights Community League is only the second community league to have formed inside of Sherwood Park since the 1980’s; our friends at Gilmore Park Community League were the first paving the way for more leagues, like ours, to form. Like Gilmore Park, we are constantly trying to find ways to give back to our community by listening to what the neighborhood wants and needs then trying to provide it. Not only did we accomplish all of our goals for the quarter, no no… we smashed our ANNUAL goals as a group. I cannot emphasize enough what an honor it is to be a part of this incredible team.


In the past few months, we were also gifted some much-needed storage space from a bit of a local celebrity, Rob Sproule. Rob and his team at DIG Marketing, have given us a handy storage area which has allowed us to centralize all of our collective clutter. We cannot begin to describe how grateful our group is and how much this storage facility will streamline our volunteer’s lives. We really want to thank Rob and his respective teams for all they do to support our League. He and his family are well known in our community and it’s always a pleasure to partner up when ever possible.


Our 3rd Annual Community Garage Sale went pretty well! We had 13 Garage Sales (and several Lemonade Stands) listed on our interactive online map and several households in the area that now know about the League. I personally made it to all of the locations listed as a challenge; everyone appeared in bright spirits and had smiles on their faces. We were also lucky to have been set up surrounding a car show and concert at the Mount Olivette Lutheran Church on Fir Street, so many of the garage sale crowd were given a bit of a treat. We received some great feedback and will be addressing all of it next year. (Yes, we will be doing it again!). Thank you to everyone that participated.


Over the past several weeks we have been occupying The Strathcona County Museum and Archives (STRATHMA) on Monday evenings. Our sold-out Introduction to Crochet class went extremely well and received great reviews. Attendees were given their materials and tools then provided with guided individual instruction while they crocheted together. The group had plenty of smiles and laughs as everyone got to know each other. The instruction was very individual and tailored to suite each person’s ability, and we want to thank Kirsten Eeuwes for providing it. We have already had so much feedback and interest that we will be arranging for a second series of classes to begin soon, so stay tuned for additional details to be announced.


We also had a surprise success with a very diverse and unique event. What started as four bored spouses playing video games while our partners crocheted, turned into THE most diverse place to be in the greater Edmonton Area. With the support of local business owners Craig and Jessica Gamache from Crescent Geek and the organization of ultimate competitor Renton McGlashan: gamertag rm8 (Ranked 2nd in Alberta), we have been able to facilitate a weekly Super Smash Bros Tournament that has been growing rapidly in size. Over the past several weeks, we have averaged nearly 30 attendees each Monday Night. There are multiple Nintendo Switch Setups, CRT Television Set-Ups with Wii’s for a Nostalgic Feeling, Drop-In Games, Prizes Donated by Local Companies, and the main events are played

on a huge projector so everyone can cheer on their favorite competitor. We’ve had even had Red Bull themselves show up to donate some of their product. The crowd age range is anywhere from families with young children to competitors aged 50+, people from all walks of life are welcome and well represented. It is one of the most diverse, inclusive, peaceful, and open groups of people I have had the pleasure to witness in person. It really must be experienced to be understood and we are happy to help them have a home for as long as we are able. Our League is currently seeking partners, sponsors, and prizes for this event. If you or your company would be willing to purchase prize donations, we would happily accept them. Crescent Geek has offered to give discounts to anyone that wishes do purchase donations through their website, just reach out to us at the SHCL and we will get you in contact (www.crescentgeek.com).


Our monthly League meetings at the museum have also been fantastic; we have some eager new volunteers and exciting opportunities coming down the line. If you’d like to hear more about the unannounced plans, please come join us for one of our monthlies at our home, the Strathcona County Museum and Archives at 913 Ash Street. It’s a great way to meet some new local friends, participate in fun community planning, and learn about what’s going on in the area. We also want to thank the museum; they have always been amazing to us and it has turned into quite the hub of our neighborhood. They help us keep our costs down so we can pass them along, we wouldn’t be able to do it without them.

As for other upcoming events, we will be hosting a Community Day in the Park that includes a Pancake Breakfast and get together. It will be hosted in the Sherwood Heights Sports Park, #50 Spruce Ave, and will be using the Skating Rink Skate Shack for power and washrooms. Thank you to the Sherwood Park Minor Baseball Association for allowing us to use it and thank you to STRATHMA for sharing their pancake making tools! The goal is to provide food for our community and fundraise. We have had a lot of success with the “pay what you can afford” mentality at our past events, so we suggest $3.00 per person but if you can afford to do so and wish to donate more towards our cause we would be grateful. Any additional funds we raise gets used to operate our volunteer group and fund future events. If you or your family cannot afford to pay for any reason, please do not let that stop you from attending this event and getting some food, fun, and friendship. Everyone is welcome. We will also be accepting donations on behalf of the Strathcona Food Bank. We hope to help them raise awareness about their organization and to help them provide food security within our community.


We have many more events and updates coming down the line, so stay tuned to all of our social media and sign up for our newsletter. We have a huge number of friends in our community, too many to thank really, but all of them have been incredible supporters of us and our cause in many ways. Don’t forget to purchase your household annual membership as a way to support our league! It’s only $25 a year and it pays you back quickly. We are always growing our list of sponsors and friends and it’s a really great way to support a small local cause while making a BIG impact in your community.


Thanks for reading. I hope to see you at many of our great events and monthly meetings and, as always, I’ll see you around the neighborhood!

-Ehren Ackerman, President of the Sherwood Heights Community League

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