Friday, February 3, 2012
I say the above because there are just too many variables at play this time around that suggest a disaster in the making of one kind or another is more than likely to happen. Costs are spiraling out of control, volunteers are lacking, organizers are pulling out, the province won't provide police unless they get a piece of the action, and our local boys many of whom are firemen, rescue and municipal employees have or are presently contemplating (threatening) washing their hands of this event as well. The list goes on.
My biggest fear (as I'm sure it is with many others) is that we will have ourselves a riot at worse and/or serious harm or injury at the very least, when in the past this event has been mostly incident free.
Emile Saindon (who I take my hat off for stepping up to the plate when so many others feared to do so) I'm afraid has taken on more than he can chew. In fact, more than this council and their supporters can chew, I'm thinking.
If these guys asked me for my advice it would be as follows "It’s good what you're doing but don’t expect any help or support on this issue. Touches too many to the core and can pit brother against brother and sister against sister."
The bottom line is that at the end of the day it all boils down to the money and control. One side wants accountability while the other side feels ‘entitled’. Now noses are out of joint and things appear to be spiraling out of control towards a potential disaster that could have long term implications that could take a generation or more to heal.
Is this how we want 'our thing', run by 'our community', showcasing 'our municipality', as local people who know how to put on a first-class event, is what we've been all about. Year after year, building and growing to where in July we're the biggest bang for the buck in all of Alberta! :-)
Rather than an on-going by the people for the people celebration, by a community that is admired also for the ‘spirit’ we have historically and habitually shown in managing to keep it together (no matter how tested we continually are). We know too how to rise to the occasion, have a brew, and celebrate life as it should and was meant to be lived... with family and friends, neighbours and new acquaintances.
A celebration of life is what this community offers the long weekend of Rum Runner Days. If we don't get our shit together it may be our last... we risk having this thing blow up in our faces. Better no fireworks than another notch against us making working and planning for a better future even more difficult than what it already is... and time consuming. This could set us back years.
All in all, it would be a shame to loose what puts us on the map and took years in the making. But unless the two sides can come to an understanding, going on our own as council is endeavouring to do, in my mind, is not an option. Just too many ways this thing could blow up in our faces.
Cooler heads, less arrogance, addressing wounded pride, and mutual respect and accountability is what is needed here. Some leadership is required... and expected.
Fireworks set off over Rum Runner Days changes
Impasse highlights gulf
UPDATE - March 08th
According to Dean's Blog council decided last Tuesday to cancel this year's Thunder in the Valley fireworks.
A sad day for thousands and an end to a 18 year ritual and tradition.
All government, indeed every human benefit and enjoyment, every virtue, every prudent act, is founded on compromise and barter.