In January of 2018, The City of Kimberley announced a new agreement with Resorts of the Canadian Rockies (RCR), stating that RCR will operate and manage the Kimberley Conference Centre. The Conference Centre was previously managed by the Kimberley Community Development Society.
Petroleum analyst Dan McTeague, with gasbuddy.com, announced a five cent hike in gas prices at the beginning of the year. He expected the average price for gasoline in 2018 would see $1.19 per litre.
The Sullivan Landing development at the top of Townsite went back online, under new ownership, after several years of no sales as legal difficulties were worked out.
The Kimberley Seniors Helping Seniors Group received a grant from the City of Kimberley for the purchase of a Trio Taxi Push bike, in an effort to help seniors get around the City in an environmentally friendly way.
In provincial news, the province gave the green light to the proposed Kootenay-West open-pit gypsum mine 12 kilometres north of Canal Flats.
Kimberley’s Overwaitea Foods switched to a Save-On-Foods in January. Kimberley and Creston were the first two of nine in the province to change over in 2018.
Mike Gould was charged with the alleged fraud of a Cranbrook restaurant, using bogus cheques, appearing in court through a lawyer in January, who requested an adjournment until Feb. 13.
Warmer temperatures throughout the month resulted in several avalanche warnings in the area from Avalanche Canada.
Kimberley City Council decided to apply for $50,000 in grant funding to have a professional assessment of both the City areas completed, following the tragedy at Fernie Memorial Arena in October of 2017. Shortly there-after, Technical Safety BC also issued new regulations for those who operate facilities such as arenas and curling rinks.
The Draft Official Community Plan (OCP) was a hot topic in Kimberley for the month of January, with a large focus on the fate of the zoning for the Marysville Bench Lands. Council passed the second reading of the Draft OCP in late January, while setting a public hearing for Feb. 19.
The City also continued their commitment to eliminate the flat tax in ten years, by reducing it for the fourth year in a row by $80. Council voted to drop the flat tax from $626 to $546 for the 2018 taxation year, despite a vote from Mayor Don McCormick who was opposed to flat tax reduction.
Deer translocation was another big topic at Council, with plans for another translocation set for March. Council approved $5,000 in the City’s budget to hire a contractor to lethally remove any deer that are translocated from Kimberley and attract complaints from neighbouring communities. This decision was part of the City complying with the 2018 translocation permit from the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development.
In January the Kimberley Dynamiters celebrated a win over the holidays, taking the Christmas Classic games and ending the tournament with an eight-game winning streak.
The 2018 Teck Kootenay Cup was held at the Kimberley Nordic Club with a record number of 260 skiers competing in one or both events. Teams from BC, Alberta and the United States competed in Kimberley before they headed to Invermere for the last leg of the competition.
At Kimberley Alpine Resort, the Rec Rut Runners league was in full swing, with a number of racers participating every Thursday night.
The Western Canadian Cross Country Ski Championships were held in Red Deer, BC in January. The Kimberley Nordic Team and Kimberley’s Molly Miller (who was skiing for the Rossland club) won two gold medals.
The Kimberley Curling Club also hosted the annual Snow Fiesta Mixed Bonspiel, where competitors participated in the ‘camping themed’ event.
The 11th Annual Ullr Dag festival was held at Kimberley Alpine Resort in January. The event pays homage to the God of Snow and Norse God of Ski, Ullr, in hopes that prayer and chant will bring snow to the ski hill for the rest of the season.
The resort also held Avalanche Awareness Day in January, where members of Kimberley Search and Rescue demonstrated several different avalanche safety, rescue and recovery techniques.
Cranbrook, Kimberley and surrounding communities mourned the loss of Captain Clayton Murrel, a prominent local firefighter, and his wife Joan MacKinnon, after they both died as a result of a car crash a few kilometres east of Yahk.
Later in the month, a joint celebration of life was held at Western Financial Place, where hundreds gathered to pay a tribute to the couple.
With plans underway for the mule deer translocation Kimberley City Council passed a motion to ask residents for permission to allow biologists access to private land during the translocation that would take place in March.
The City also held a public hearing where Council heard from residents about their thoughts on the proposed Official Community Plan. There were mixed opinions from many residents at the time, however a large focus revolved around the pros and cons for the light industrial zoning of the Marysville bench lands.
At the end of the month, Council voted to adopt the OCP after much discussion on every aspect of the plan. Councillors Bev Middlebrook and Albert Hoglund voted against the motion, both of whom had concerns that revolved around the zoning of the bench lands.
The Resort Municipality Funding that Kimberley has been applying for, and receiving since the program’s inception, was confirmed for another year.
Mayor McCormick traveled to Vancouver in February to receive the midsize communities Open for Business Award at the Small Business BC Entrepreneur Awards Gala.
The Kimberley Chamber of Commerce reacted to the B.C. government’s decision to raise minimum wage up to $15.20 an hour by 2021, with Chamber Manager Mike Guarnery stating more time is needed for small businesses in rural communities to prepare for the wage hike.
The province also announced that starting in 2019, B.C.’s Family Day holiday would be moved to the third week in February, aligning with Alberta’s Family Day holiday.
With snowy conditions persisting into February, a group of concerned residents took matters into their own hands to salt and sand the Overwaitea hill. Kimberley local Michelle Nex said that road conditions were “absolutely deplorable” and she was concerned for both her, her daughter, and her grandchildren’s safety.
At the same time residents were taking matters into their own hands, the Regional District of East Kooteay voted to send a letter to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure requesting a review of highway maintenance standards.
Steeples Vet Clinic confirmed that a foreign toxic substance was found in two dogs that died after walking through the Cranbrook Community Forest in December of 2017.
With the Para Alpine World Cup taking place at Kimberley Alpine Resort, there was a lot of action happening at the ski hill in February. Alana Ramsay, who’s home town is Kimberley, represented Canada at the Para Alpine Cup. Ramsay is a four-time world-championship medalist.
The FIS Race Series was also taking place in Kimberley in February. Kimberley native Jamie Casselman placed first in the FIS Night Slalom race, stating that he was very happy with his performance during the week of races.
The Canadian Olympic Committee and Alpine Canada announced that Kimberley native Stanley Hayer would be head coach for Women’s Ski Cross. At the same time, Cranbrook’s India Sherret announced she would be part of the team.
Prior to game one of the playoffs, the Kimberley Dynamiters were presented with the banner for finishing in first place in the Eddie Mountain Division. They also won game one of the playoff series against Fernie.
The Kimberley Health Care Auxiliary bid farewell to four long-time volunteers, Pat Cox, Betsy Dangle, Shirley Osbourne and Marlene Shannon.
Military Ames held a spaghetti dinner, Pasta with a Purpose, where they raised $2400 for the group.
Vahana Nature rehabilitation gained 14 new members to their goat-grazing family in February, while also preparing for a busy spring and summer of invasive plant management.
Slippery road conditions om Halpin Street resulted in the crash of a school bus, city sand truck and several other vehicles at the beginning of March. There were four students on the bus at the time of the accident, and no injuries were reported from any of the drivers or passengers.
Kimberley RCMP were warning residents of a telephone scam in March, where people were calling to say that they are from the Canada Revenue Agency. The local detachment even received a call themselves, with fake CRA agents stating that the RCMP could be arrested if they do not pay back their taxes.
The Regional District of East Kootenay approved a grant application for $25,000 to go towards upgrades to their Emergency Operations Centre. The grant was sourced from the Community Emergency Preparedness fund.
The translocation of 50 mule deer also took place in March and biologists were able to move 10 deer per day over a five day period. The deer were moved to a remote location north of the Kootenay River and Canal Flats.
Before, during and after the translocation, feeding of urban deer continued to be an issue brought up at Kimberley City Council meetings. Council was urging residents not to feed the deer, while Kimberley Bylaw and the BC Conservation Officer service began working together to educate the community around the issues with feeding deer.
Council also established an Industrial Lands Advisory Committee in March. Committee members would be tasked with examining industrial land options within Kimberley, including lands owned by Teck.
Another topic at Council was funding for Tourism Kimberley. Council voted to keep funding as-is, at $75,000 annually, stating that tourism is a vital part of Kimberley’s economy.
The weather continued to pose challenges in Kimberley, with a large snow load causing the collapse of a multi-car carport behind the Ptarmigan Apartments in mid-March. No one was in the carport at the time of the collapse, and no injuries were reported.
A judge dismissed a charter challenge brought forward by polygamist leader Winston Blackmore in March, resulting in a pre-sentencing report that would come back to Cranbrook Supreme Court in May.
Mike Gould was charged with fraud and using fraudulent cheques after failing to immediately pay an $8,000 tab for a banquet at a local restaurant to celebrate a promised $7.5 million donation to the Kimberley Dynamiters Minor Hockey Association. Gould was sentenced in Cranbrook Provincial Court to a $4,000 fine and six months of probation to complete 60 hours of community service.
A hockey reunion was held in Kimberley in March, demonstrating how deep the history of the Kimberley Dynamiters runs in the community. Gathering at the Civic Centre were the great grandchildren of some members of the 1937 world amateur hockey championship team.
Alex Johnson was announced as the winner of the Gary Pearson Memorial Award, which is awarded annually to the most inspirational player in kimberley minor hockey.
Kimberley’s senior Cross Country team headed to nationals in Thunder Bay. Marielle Ackermann won two gold medals in 5km combined pursuit and in 5km Day of Race.
The NorAm Cup finals wrapped up at Kimberley Alpine Resort at the end of March, with team Canada gaining points in almost every event.
The Kimberley Skating Club ended their season on a high note with their annual Ice Show. Hundreds of family members and friends attended the event, which showcased what the skaters accomplished over the course of the season.
The B.C. U-18 Curling Championships were also held in March, with a Kimberley connection on the girls team skipped by Jaclyn Cotter. Kayla Buchy also joined the team at third in the season.
The Kimberley Arts Council announced in March that local musician and Arts Council Board Member Lennon Delaney would be taking over as president of the Kimberley Arts Council. Mike Redfern was the president of the Arts Council for over five years before declared his intention to step down.
The Arts Council also held their annual Arts and Culture Awards Gala, where several members of the community were recognized for making outstanding contributions to arts in the community. The winners were Selkirk Secondary School Music Teacher Sven Heyde and Michelle and Alex Forbes of Kimberley City Bakery. Micah Meuleman also received the Golden Piano Award, which is presented to a piano student scoring the highest marks in conservatory exams.
Cindy Postnikoff of Military Ames was thanked by the community for her efforts as the East Kootenay representative for Quilts of Valour. Quilts of Valour provides quilts to veterans and active duty Canadian service men and women.
The Bulletin’s Year in Review will continue over the next few editions.