As if there wasn’t already enough to love about Woodlea, on Tuesday evening, droves — well more than 40 — Woodlea residents attended a meet and greet. Perhaps not a first-ever such gathering, the consensus was that, “We should have done this long ago.”
We discussed neighbourhood interests and issues, priorities and peeves. We had discussions about planning and development, crime prevention and safety, possible community celebrations and events, as well as the current pulse and potential future for our neighbourhood.
There was not only positive and productive discussion, the evening was an opportunity to connect with neighbours and get to know each other better. There was a definite sense of community pride and commitment, of neighbourliness, in the air.
Speaking of location (and neighbourliness), many thanks to Rebecca and Paul for eagerly opening the doors of their Benedict Devlin Real Estate Services office to the neighbourhood. To say they were extremely gracious and very generous hosts would be an understatement. Rebecca and Paul have transformed the former Traptow Photography building into a beautiful community asset. It was the perfect setting for the gathering.
Special thanks to Emily Damberger (community and program facilitator at the City of Red Deer) and her colleagues for sharing their expertise and experience to transform the passion and ideas of our small organizing committee into a constructive and rewarding evening. We appreciate the time and effort, support and suggestions, provided thus far and anticipated as we go forward.
And thank you to our neighbours for a great evening. Overwhelmingly positive, generally on the same page about concerns and ideas, the group agreed that staying connected, working together and having a voice were important — that the evening was a great start. All were in favour of moving forward towards establishing a community association (of some form).
If the goal of the organizing committee was to meet our neighbours, gauge their interest, get a sense of the issues, generate ideas, reach consensus and determine next steps, we exceeded our expectations. Thank you all.
So next, the organizing committee will work with the city’s community development staff to analyze information gathered at the meeting and report back to the community. If you are a Woodlea resident willing to share ideas or comments, or would like your email added to the contact list, feel free to contact firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Laura Turner, Doug Anderson, Sheila Bannerman, Bruce Buckley and Peter Slade