Story & Photos by Dan Davidson
Dawsonites learned rather late in the week that their town had been chosen as one of the thirteen finalists in CBC’s “Live Right Now” capital of Canada search. Most would have learned of it only on Tuesday and Wednesday when posters went up at the Post Office and the rec. dept made a formal presentation to council on March 28.
At a community lunch and launch event held at the Art and Margaret Fry Recreation Centre at noon on March 29, Rec. Director Lana Welchman explained that the town had applied to the contest earlier in the year, but had just learned last week that it was one of the finalists.
Other communities across Canada included: Corner Brook, N.L.; Pictou, N.S.; Charlottetown, P.E.I.; Edmundston, N.B.; Montreal, Que.; Cambridge, Ont.; Dauphin, Man.; Saskatoon, Sask.; Edmonton, Alta.; Kamloops, B.C.; Iqaluit, Nunavut; and Yellowknife, N.W.T.
Accord to the CBC website, “In six months thousands of Canadians and dozens of communities came together to take more than 92,000 challenges, share their success stories and support each other to Live Right Now.”
Live Right Now is built around the idea that that people can have a big impact by making small changes to the way they move and how they eat. Communities were asked to demonstrate the ways in which they were active.
The ultimate winner of the contest will receive a $100,000 natural playground courtesy of the Canadian Wildlife Federation, Parks Canada and Bienenstock Natural Playgrounds.
The thirteen finalists are all expected to hold final events, after which the winner will be crowned and featured on CBC later in April.
Dawson’s final entry in the contest was themed Just Another Day in Dawson. It kicked off at 10:45 with an outdoor assembly by the Robert Service School, after which the classes separated to take on a variety of activities: hiking to Moosehide; skiing, snowboarding and coasting at Moose Mountain; skating at the arena; mushing in the YTG Campground across the Yukon River; and other activities on the school’s playground.
For the community at large there was a lunch and launch event held in the rec. centre at noon.
The goal of Just Another Day in Dawson, said Rec. Board President Peter Menzies, was to highlight how active the town already is, with some 40 or more volunteer organizations in the community, many of them connected to recreational activities.
“We will also be telling the unique story of living active in Dawson as well as featuring volunteers who make recreation possible,” Welchman said.
Guest speakers at the lunchtime launch included Mayor Jenkins and volunteer spokespersons for soccer, figure skating, snowmobiling, women’s hockey and bush living.
Shelly Brown, who lives in West Dawson and skijors to work, a trip of about 20 minutes, each day in the winter, shared several amusing anecdotes about her daily commute.