June Speaker Series – Community Pitch Night
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Community Pitch Night
Thursday, June 16, 2022 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm on Zoom
Facilitated by Friends of Fish Creek Volunteers, Staff and Community Members
Pictured above is a small team of volunteers who came together because a long-standing community member and volunteer, Joe Gerritsen, proposed the rejuvenation of signage along the Single Track Trail. Not only did Joe propose the idea, he backed the idea up with his time, energy and dedication. He mapped the signs that needed replacement or removal, and led a crew of volunteers, including our new Stewardship Truck, in the field to bring the project to fruition. Over several outings, the team successfully finished the work, a project that never would have been completed if it hadn’t been brought forward by a community member.
Inspired by Joe’s and other community members’ willingness to step forward over the years, in the spring of 2022, we invited community members to submit their ideas for special project that either:
- repair/improve existing park infrastructure,
- improve current Friends of Fish Creek programming, or
- reclaim/restore a natural area within the park.
Thank you to all who submitted ideas! After careful consideration of all proposed projects and discussions with partnering agencies, we decided to move ahead with Will Ratliffe’s proposal to pilot a method of removing human-made debris from one of the many City of Calgary stormwater ponds situated in Fish Creek Provincial Park.
Stormwater from city streets often contains innumerable small pieces of plastic and other materials. When the stormwater lands in a settling pond, the buoyant debris floats to the surface and eventually makes its way to the edges of the pond. If not removed, these pieces of plastic would eventually make their way to Hudson Bay, ultimately ending up in the world’s oceans causing problems for seabirds, fish and marine mammals who may ingest or become entangled in it. On June 16, 2022, we hosted a Community Pitch Night where we invited online audience members to hear about the chosen project.
Thanks to the City of Calgary for supporting the project! Friends of Fish Creek staff are working with Will and his co-conspirators to get the project off the ground in late summer/early fall 2022. An article detailing the findings of the pilot project will be included in the Winter 2023 edition of the Voice of the Friends newsletter. We look forward to sharing with you what we learn!
Photo courtesy of Ward Sanderson