President’s Year End Message

Hello Fellow Gyros:

Well that was one heck of a year; let’s hope it is all behind us.

  1. We started the year with a glimmer of hope.  July saw us enjoy the golf tournament organized by Gordon Stewart.  In our enthusiasm for finally getting together again we forgot (or chose to ignore) the social and distancing guidelines.  Fortunately no-one got ill so the event was a huge success.
  2. Gary Kleebaum hosted the annual outdoor Bocce tournament at his backyard in August.  Once again, people were so enthused about getting together again that not a single Bocce ball was thrown; not even in anger.  We also sent congratulations to Dawn and John Williams for their 60th wedding anniversary celebration.
  3. September saw us once again at the German Canadian Cultural Club for our Annual General Meeting.  Our attendance was lower than normal due to uncertainty around distancing and concern from our aging Gyros.  September also saw us lose Jeanne Carter which was a tremendous blow to us all; and she will be forever missed.
  4. The Indoor Bocce and Founders Night October events were both cancelled.
  5. We held our first Zoom meeting in November to install the new Executive and to induct our new member George Huybregts.  We also welcomed back Jack Beatty and introduced Nestor Slipchuk as a new prospect.
  6. The President’s Christmas Party was cancelled.  However we did participate in an excellent Zoom presentation from Allan Bleiken on the topic of the Coronavirus Pandemic.
  7. A Zoom meeting took place on January 13th where we inducted Nestor Slipchuk into Gyro.  The rest of the meeting  was reserved to have each participant give us a summary of how they endured a Pandemic Christmas without family and loved ones.  January 30 was a sad day for the Gyro family as Judy Taylor – Merrick lost her battle with cancer.
  8. On Wednesday, February 10th, 28 Gyros joined in a Zoom meeting. The guest speaker was Sheldon Croome, President and CEO of Atlas Biotechnologies, a locally based company making exciting strides in the field of medical cannabis and having an impact on the national and international scene. Our own Peter Elzinga is Board Chairman for the company and arranged for the guest speaker.
  9. A Zoom meeting was held March 10th with 27 members and one guest participating. Our guest speaker was Larry Neumeister, chemical engineer, who took us through a fascinating eight year journey as he designed and oversaw construction of his unique home in Sherwood Park.  Thanks to Bernie Kropp for arranging this meeting.
  10. Our April Zoom meeting took place on April 14th and featured guest speaker Allison McCollum, a partner in the law firm Whitten LLP, who spoke to us on Wills and Estates. The topic was a significant one and Allison was a great educator. She spent over an hour with us covering the “must do’s” and pitfalls to avoid in areas ranging from wills, to trusts, to power of attorneys. Thanks to Richard Craddock for introducing the speaker.
  11. Twenty three Gyros participated in the May 20th Zoom Meeting which was essentially an election meeting to determine the leadership for the coming year.  There were three candidates for the position of Director . Roger Delveaux nominated and introduced Jack Beatty. Dorne Hunt nominated and introduced Bruce Schelske. Sid Slade introduced and nominated Nestor Slipchuk. All candidates passed the challenging requirements precipitated by an extremely high qualification bar and were acclaimed. Bruce Copeland introduced himself as candidate for VP, spoke glowingly and called for nominations to cease, thus assuring his election.
  12. No meetings in June.  Allen Govenlock passed away suddenly on June 3rd from a stroke he had a few days earlier. Allen and Judy were friends to many and although he was a member of Gyro for a short period of time, his presence will be missed by the members of the club.

At this time I would like to thank our departing Board of Directors for their efforts during a very trying year:

  • Past President Allan Bleiken
  • Vice- President Peter Elzinga
  • Secretary Ray Davis
  • Treasurer Erik Braun
  • Director Bernie Kropp
  • Director Ian Bannatyne
  • Director Bruce Copeland
  • Director Art Merrik
  • Park Points Bulletin Editor Scott Brisbin
  • Health and Wellness Coordinator Don Greig
  • Club Administrator John Williams
  • Club Registrar Dorne Hunt

With the COVID restrictions now lifted we can look forward to a new and exciting year and a return to some level of normalcy.  I hope that I never see another Zoom Meeting again 😊.

I hope to see you all at the Golf tournament on July 7 and the Kropp Family Picnic on July 25.




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