Canadian organization hands out honors for 2008
The Canadian Council of Snowmobile Organizations (CCSO) has announced the winners of its annual Excellence Awards.
Nominations come from the provincial/territory organizations across Canada that belong to the CCSO. The awards are presented to the winners at the International Snowmobile Congress which will be hosted by the Idaho Snowmobile Association in Boise, Idaho on June 11 to 14, 2008. The awards banquet will be held on the Saturday night June 14, 2008 and will be the celebration of organized snowmobiling with members from the American Council of Snowmobile Association (ACSA), Snofed (Sweden) and the Canadian Council of Snowmobile Organizations (CCSO).
The following are the CCSO 2008 Excellence Awards winners:
Outstanding Snowmobile Dealership Awarded to: Barrhead Motor Sports Nominated by: Alberta Snowmobile Association (ASA)
Barrhead Motor Sports is a Polaris dealership in Barrhead, Alberta and has been a friend of snowmobiling to the Northern Lights Snowmobile Club and the ASA. Darren and Irene Strawson are avid snowmobilers and supporters of organized snowmobiling. They provide a complimentary pass with every new sled sold along with a copy of the trail rules with hand signals and a local trail map. From spearheading a fight to ban local snowmobiling to loaner sleds for the RCMP on search and rescue Darren and Irene are there to help. The Northern Lights President says “I know of no other dealership or owner that is more deserving of the honor of dealer of the year.”
Outstanding Organized Snowmobile Related Company Awarded to: Carrot River Agencies Ltd. Nominated by: Saskatchewan Snowmobile Association (SSA)
Perry Cavanaugh purchased the business in 1983 and has always been an avid supporter of organized snowmobiling. Perry volunteers to oversee the advertising campaign for the local club. Each year he contacts the businesses to advertise on special signs along the trail and he raises over $5,000 to help with grooming expenses. As a business owner Perry understands the economic impact of snowmobiling to his community. Every club would love to have the support of their business leaders as willing volunteers like Perry Cavanaugh.
Outstanding Snowmobile Promotion and Development of Snowmobiling Awarded to: SnowTrax Television Nominated by: Saskatchewan Snowmobile Association (SSA)
SnowTrax Television is broadcast in over 8 million households in Canada (plus 64 million in the USA) and have worked in partnership with Tourism Saskatchewan. They showcased a portion of the extensive SSA trails system concentrating on features including accommodations, restaurants, Saskatchewan’s proud prairie hospitality and love of the outdoors. By having Deputy Minister Clay Serby, SSA President Barry Bradshaw and CEO Chris Brewer interviewed on the SnowTrax episodes, it reconfirmed the high level of commitment that Saskatchewan has shown towards the safety, promotion and future of organized snowmobiling in the province. Debbie Burke works closely with local clubs and is very well known for the positive exposure and imagine of organized snowmobiling.
Outstanding Snowmobile Club Awarded to: Driftclimbers Snowmobile Club Nominated by: Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia (SANS)
The Driftclimbers Snowmobile Club was established in 1969 and is the oldest club in Nova Scotia. The Club maintains about 150 km of trail in Fall River, Beaverbank, Mount Uniake, Rawdon and Nine Mile River. An additional 200-300 km was opened in the Kewnnetcook Stanly area. From the Halifax Parade of Lights to Santa parades in Fall River or Truro this club is available to promote safe snowmobiling for the whole family. The club has initiated some very exciting youth programs such as – the Junior Groomer Operators or the Junior Trail Warden to get the “new” volunteers hooked on this great pastime. Club volunteers are involved at the provincial level as well. President Brian Carter, for example: hosting the Warden Training or Cindy Patriquin who is now certified as a Train the Trainer for the Snowmobile Safety Instructor Course. Some of the founding members of SANS still remain active at the club, like Alma Russell who is in charge of fundraising.
Outstanding Snowmobile Family Awarded to: Cooper Family Nominated by: Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC)
The Cooper Family lives near London, Ontario in St. Thomas in the OFSC’s District 5. They are a family that has been actively involved in snowmobiling from babies in their mother’s arms in a ski-boose. Later in their teens Bryan and Shelley met as teenagers and now they ride as a family with their girls on day trips. The Cooper family is involved in every aspect of the Elgin Trail Riders Snowmobile Club. Bryan started in 1999 as a Director and never says no – from fundraising, wardening, groomer operator and maintenance to signage with full family help and support for many of the activities. Shelley is very active as well from the Easter Seals Chapter President to club secretary to Santa Float Building Chair — this couple is doing it all in the spirit of making a difference. If you have a problem with a local farmer, need a bridge installed, a trail signed or groomed or need to hold a meeting, this family is willing to offer a hand. Bryan, Shelly and their 2 daughters – Alex and Bryanna – are involved at every level and make sure that all volunteers feel welcome and appreciated.
Outstanding Snowmobiler Awarded to: Jeannie Brewer Nominated by: Saskatchewan Snowmobile Association (SSA)
Jeannie started snowmobiling in 1967 and got her own snowmobile in 1982. Jeannie was one of the founding members of the Mountain Lake Drifters Snowmobile Club and continues to volunteer for the club today. Jeannie is currently the Treasurer and can be found helping out at fundraisers, selling tickets, working the concession stand on Canada Day, working at the grass drags, working at the fishing derby, always offering a hand or leading the group by cooking , cleaning or running the cash box or making late night deposits. As Jeannie says “Just to see the smiles on the faces of the children is thanks enough”. Several years ago Jeannie was diagnosed with breast cancer. After surgery and treatment, she decided to raise awareness. With the help of a close friend Jeannie started Prairie Women on Snow and remains a member today. On the annual ride Jeannie raises about $2,000 per year for breast cancer research and awareness. Jeannie’s hard work and determination have helped snowmobiling grow to what it is today and her continued efforts will shape the future of snowmobiling in Saskatchewan
Outstanding Snowmobile Tourism, Promotion and Development Awarded to: North East Muni-Corr Ltd. Nominated by: Alberta Snowmobile Association (ASA)
In 1999, CN Rail gave notice it planned to abandon its rail in NE Alberta. Ten municipalities agreed to work together under the umbrella of Muni-Corr to gain community support to convert the land into a multi-use corridor. In June 2000 the paper transfer from CN was then developed into a multi-use trail and named the Alberta Iron Horse Trail (AIHT). The government recognized the economic, tourism and community development opportunities led by Muni-Corr and supported the initiative with funding from Canadian Tourism Commission for a 3-year program. Muni-Corr contributes funding and resources which provide recreation opportunities to everyone. The Muni-Corr model has been recognized for their win/win negotiations with CNR, reclaiming former CN right-of-way and transforming them into corridors that accommodate a range of natural and public uses but in particular organized snowmobiling for the winter.
Outstanding Youth – The Pete Greenlaw Award Awarded to: Crystal Tracey Nominated by: Alberta Snowmobile Association (ASA)
Crystal Tracey was born into a snowmobiling family and has been on a snowmobile since she was 3 years old. Crystal has been attending meetings at her home club the Crowsnow Riders, Crowsnest Pass Alberta. She has started her own website for young riders to visit and share their experiences and pictures. Crystal is a regular contributor to the club newsletter, has attended workshop forums and is constantly promoting safe riding and environmental friendliness. As a willing volunteer she has helped to man the phone when looking for support or to help to organize a ride. You see many young people on the trail but you only see one (Crystal) at the meetings. Crystal is often saying that she loves sledding and wants to ensure that we have a place to ride long into the future.