Strathmore wins the race to host the 2015 Alberta 55 Plus Summer Games
The 2015 55 Plus Games will be hosted in Strathmore. The announcement was made Monday afternoon at Kinsmen Park that the town will be the community to welcome talented athletes from all over Alberta to participate in the games. (left to right) Strathmore Town Councillor Bob Sobol, Dr. Richard Starke, Minister of Tourism, Parks and Recreation, Mayor Steve Grajcyzk, and Councillor John Rempel make the announcement.
A sunny Monday afternoon helped usher in good news for Strathmore and the Alberta 55 Plus games.
Strathmore has been chosen to host the games for its active and mature citizens. The announcement was made at Kinsmen Park.
“ I would like to express how extremely pleased we are in hosting the 2015 55 Plus games. We are looking forward to extending our hospitality to the many visitors and competitor that this outstanding event will bring,” said Strathmore Mayor Steve Grajczyk.
The games, open to Albertans 55 years of age and older, include events such as athletics (track and other field sports), golfing, cycling, swimming as well as euchre, bocce and team sports like slo-pitch baseball.
“ I know that this is a fantastic thing for your community…said Dr. Richard Starke, Minister of Tourism, Parks and Recreation.
“We know that promoting healthy active lifestyles is really an investment in our overall society, everyone’s aware of how expense our health care system is and they’re very aware its very hard to fix a problem once its occurs. Those that have a healthy, active lifestyle are less likely to impact our health care system by making sure there’s an emphasis on lifelong fitness,” said Starke.
Being awarded the multisport event will bring many benefits to the community.
“We are so excited its going to do so much for this community, its going to bring economic value to the community, even more so people will make new relationships and renew old ones and that in itself is a lot,” said Mayor Grajczyk. “Not only the economic value but it will put Strathmore on the map.”
The decision to have Strathmore host the games was based on the town’s abilities; be it infrastructure or community support, all played an important role in being awarded the games.
“ Strathmore was able to demonstrate it had all the necessary facilities to accommodate all the various activities that are part of the games, said Dennis Allen, Director of Marketing & The Provincial Sport Branch for the Alberta Sport, Recreation, Parks and Wildlife Foundation (ASRPWF). “[The committee] did a great job selling their community to us, they’d shown a real sense of community pride… and not only that they’ve never had a game before that’s an advantage.
Allen said that one of ASRPWF’S philosophies has been trying to move the games around the province giving the games to community that haven’t hosted before.
The Alberta Sport, Recreation, Parks and Wildlife Foundation’s will coordinate the games with support from the Alberta 55 Plus Association; it’s a collaborative effort with the Town of Strathmore, local sponsors and the Alberta government. The games are a provincial initiative focused on keeping Albertans active.
“It’s also important that sport doesn’t end when were young that we continue to be active, healthy, and involved in all different forms of sport all throughout our lifetime,” said Starke. “Because we know that has a positive influence on our overall health.”
Through the Alberta Sport, Recreation, Parks and Wildlife Foundation, the Alberta government supports the host community with grants totalling $175,000.