Native centre has home; fire cause unknown

Destruction from the fire at the building that housed Red Deer Native Friendship Society has made it difficult to determine whether it was caused by cigarette disposal in a planter, a barbecue or electrical wiring.

Destruction from the fire at the building that housed Red Deer Native Friendship Society has made it difficult to determine whether it was caused by cigarette disposal in a planter, a barbecue or electrical wiring.

“We know where it started. It’s just that there are a couple of possibilities that make it hard to make an absolute ruling,” fire prevention officer Tim Kivell said on Friday.

“It may not ever be determined.”

He said the barbecue was used prior to the fire. The gas tank was open, but the valve burners were turned off. Electrical upgrades were done in the building within the past year. Butting out cigarettes in potting material, which is combustible, is also a common cause of fire.

The fire at 4712 51st Ave. broke out early in the morning on May 28. It started on the second floor exterior patio beside apartments on the west end of the building. The friendship centre and Street Ties Youth Outreach were located on the first floor.

“It’s accidental in nature. There’s no reason for us to believe it was intentionally set,” Kivell said.

The fire caused an estimated $350,000 in damage due to extensive smoke, water and fire.

On Tuesday, Red Deer Native Friendship Society will be moving into its new location at 5405 50th Ave., above Cash Canada, where they expect to be for the next year.

Outreach worker Mel Sawyerr said the response from the community has been awesome.

“We weren’t aware we were as well known as we seem to be, and in a good way,” Sawyerr said.

About $5,000 in donations have come in, along with office furniture and supplies.

“We’d just like to send a big thank you out to the community for helping us in our time of need. We’ll continue to give back to the community.”

Aboriginal Employment and the friendship society will hold a summer kickoff fundraiser on Tuesday, from 7 to 11 p.m. at Festival Hall. Entertainers include traditional dancer Dallas Arcand and Metis hypnotist Scott Ward. Tickets will be sold at a stand at Parkland Mall today from 1 to 4 p.m. Tickets will also be available at the door.

Tickets are $15 each for society members, $15 each for non-members, $10 for children six to 12. Children under six get in free.

For more information, call Aboriginal Employment at 403-358-7734 or the friendship society at 403-340-0020.

szielinski@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Parenting: Every woman will have a different pregnancy experience

Wife whose hormones are unbalanced can be unpleasant experience

Men posing as repo men attempt to steal vehicle in Red Deer County

Two men attempted to steal a utility vehicle from a Red Deer… Continue reading

Red Deerian spreads kindness with one card at a time

One Red Deerian wants to combat bullying by spreading kindness in the… Continue reading

Bowden baby in need of surgery

“Help for Alexis” Go Fund Me account

PHOTO: First Rider bus safety in Red Deer

Central Alberta students learned bus safety in the Notre Dame High School… Continue reading

WATCH: Annual Family Picnic at Central Spray and Play

Blue Grass Sod Farms Ltd. held the Annual Family Picnic at the… Continue reading

Woman has finger ripped off at West Edmonton Mall waterslide

SASKATOON — A Saskatchewan woman says she lost a finger after her… Continue reading

Uncertainty looms over Canada’s cannabis tourism, but ambitions are high

TORONTO — Longtime marijuana advocate Neev Tapiero is ready for the cannabis-driven… Continue reading

Feds mulling safeguards to prevent ‘surge’ of cheap steel imports into Canada

OTTAWA — The federal government extended an olive branch of sorts to… Continue reading

Ontario govt caps off summer session by passing bill to cut Toronto council size

TORONTO — The Ontario government passed a controversial bill to slash the… Continue reading

Updated:Italian bridge collapse sends cars plunging, killing 26

MILAN — A 51-year-old highway bridge in the Italian port city of… Continue reading

Saudi Arabia spat affecting Canadians embarking on hajj, community members say

TORONTO — Members of Canada’s Muslim community say recent tensions between Ottawa… Continue reading

Tug carrying up to 22,000 litres of fuel capsizes in Fraser River off Vancouver

VANCOUVER — The smell of diesel filled the air as crews worked… Continue reading

Nebraska executes first inmate using fentanyl

LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska carried out its first execution in more than… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month