2012 Year End: June – August

A recap of the who, what, where, when, why and how of news in Port Alberni between June and August.

June:

The Valley’s boating industry fared the recession well as it headed into another season. The used boat market was brisk at the Port Boat House. Alberni Industrial Marine was set to expand. Fibre Pro Boats owner Mike Bouchard just built a boat for fishing show host Mark Pendlington.

More than 50 people protested outside the constituency office of Nanaimo-Alberni Conservative MP James Lunney. The group was protesting the federal Conservative’s Omnibus Budget.Known as Bill C-38.

City and IHS officials were scrambling for a plan to deal with the $70,000 budget shortfall the IHS found itself in after council approved their budget.

Organizers were cranking up for another Relay For Life event. The News interviews Katherine Mitchell-Adad, whose brother James recently died from cancer, and to the spirited team from Shoppers Drug Mart, who were supporting a co-worker.

Compliance Coal CEO John Tapics was met by a phalanx of protesters as he addressed the Alberni Valley Chamber of Commerce.

It was the end of an era as a wrecking ball brought down the main building at Clutesi Haven Marina.

And still on the water front, PAPA announced that its new chief executive officer was Zoran Knezevic from Surrey.  Knezevic replaced Brad Madelung, who retired.

Calgary Flames goaltending prospect Laurent Brossoit, 19, was named to Team Canada’s roster for the 2012 Canada-Russia Challenge. Brossoit’s father John hails from Port Alberni.

ADSS students Derrick Van Viegen, master of ceremonies for this year’s graduation ceremonies, and Ryan Hart, valedictorian, talked about what it was like to be the last class to graduate from the old school on Burde Street.

Port Alberni teachers supported an agreement between the provincial government and British Columbia Teachers Federation, Alberni District Teacher’s Union president Ken Zydyk said. The one-year was consistent with the government’s net-zero mandate,

And the Port Alberni Junior Hockey Society announced that it reached an agreement with majority shareholder Okanagan Hockey Schools to buy the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.

July

The final class graduated from the old Alberni District Secondary School in style, with the customary car parade to the AV Multiplex.

Once classes were finished for the year, teachers and school district employees began packing up 60 years’ worth of equipment and memories in preparation for moving into the new facility.

The Port Alberni RCMP ran a successful inaugural camp for high school students interested in a policing career.

A delegation from Abishiri, Japan visited Port Alberni to celebrate the cities’ twinning relationship that has continued for 26 years. During the same visit, Roxy Manson, 7, received recognition from Consul-General of Japan Hideki Ito for her fundraising efforts for the Japanese tsunami survivors.

A tubing excursion at Stamp Falls turned tragic when three visitors from Qualicum Beach accidently went over the falls and one man died. The accident prompted calls for better signage at the provincial park, warning people not to go tubing from the top of the park.

At the end of the month, a woman driving up to the RCMP station with what she thought was a live grenade caused some excitement. The bomb squad was called in from Vancouver and the grenade was later found to be a fake.

August

The first weekend in August was all about homecoming, as thousands of people helped celebrate Port Alberni’s centennial with a four-day party. Bob Dailey Stadium was the focal point, with a centennial car show held at the neighbouring multiplex. The weekend wrapped up with a centennial-flavoured family picnic at McLean Mill National Historic Site.

Final part next week.

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