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Red Deer Resort and Casino hosts dinner for wildfire evacuees

More than 100 people who evacuated from their homes in the Northwest Territories gathered for a community support dinner in Red Deer earlier this week.
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The Red Deer Resort and Casino hosted a special dinner at its RR Restaurant for people who have been evacuated from the Northwest Territories due to wildfires on Wednesday. (Advocate file photo)

More than 100 people who evacuated from their homes in the Northwest Territories gathered for a community support dinner in Red Deer earlier this week.

The Red Deer Resort and Casino hosted a special dinner at its R&R Restaurant on Wednesday to show support and comfort for more than 120 evacuees who are staying at the hotel.

“We stood united with those affected by these unfortunate events. This dinner symbolizes our commitment to the community, extending our hospitality to offer comfort during this difficult time,” said Adrian Strawberry, hotel operations manager.

On Thursday, the City of Red Deer announced its reception centre at the G.H. Dawe Community Centre had reached its 1,000-person capacity.

Deborah Strawberry, the hotel’s outlets manager, said the evacuees were appreciative of the hotel for hosting this dinner. About 80 per cent of the people who RSVPed for the dinner were in attendance.

“Everyone was conversing and telling each other about their stories. They were breaking bread in a sense,” Deborah Strawberry said.

“There were conversations about how they don’t know how their homes are doing … but there was also a big positive side to it and how the City of Red Deer pulled together to give them accommodations here, give them food vouchers and whatnot to lighten that load off of them.”

READ MORE: Red Deer reception centre reaches capacity

A few months ago wildfires forced evacuations at O’Chiese First Nation, the owner the Red Deer Resort and Casino.

“When people got evacuated from there they came to the hotel. We were letting everyone know (at the community support dinner on Thursday) that we have an idea of what they’re going through. We wanted to do something small just to put a smile on their faces,” said Deborah Strawberry.

The casino, located within the Red Deer Resort and Casino, is set to open this September. For more information, visit www.reddeerresortandcasino.ca.



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Sean McIntosh

About the Author: Sean McIntosh

Sean joined the Red Deer Advocate team in the summer of 2017. Originally from Ontario, he worked in a small town of 2,000 in Saskatchewan for seven months before coming to Central Alberta.
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