President’s Message – September 2017
With most of summer behind us, and fall approaching, I thought I would reflect on the last few months and discuss some of the activities we have undertaken as a community, and as a Board of Directors.
Since January the DQCA board has undertaken the following activities:
- Enhanced Landscape Maintenance Program for Douglas Glen – The DQCA has reinstated the program beginning in 2017 and assumed responsibility for the enhanced landscape maintenance program for Douglas Glen. The program was previously administered by the volunteer based Douglas Glen Maintenance Association. This association was dissolved in 2015 due to lack of volunteers, and the program was not provided in 2016.
- Casino – held in April we had 27 volunteers, and we expect to receive approx. $70,000 dollars
- New Website – In April we launched a new Website dqca.ca, and we continue to try and add to the content and make this an important source of information regarding community event and news. We still would like to find some volunteers to help us enhance our website.
- Engagement with Benefit Reward Partners – We have been working hard to connect with community business partners, and to update the benefit rewards list of participating businesses.
- Community Clean Up – this event was held on the Sunday of the May long weekend in conjunction with the City of Calgary. This event provides residents the ability to bring items destined for the city landfills to a central spot in the community and dispose of their items without paying landfill fees. We were very disappointed this year with the many inconsiderate residents that started dumping items prior to the event and resulted in a massive pile of garbage in the tennis courts parking lot in DouglasGlen. This created a huge cleanup effort for City of Calgary workers for almost 2 hours prior to the official event beginning. People illegally dumping were verbally abusive to volunteers, when confronted and asked to stop. These inconsiderate actions were unsafe and reflected poorly on the community. Because of these issues, the board has determined that we will not be hosting this event in 2018.
- Driving Range Parking Lot security and safety improvements: This outstanding issue was brought up at the Annual General Meeting by concerned residents. This area attracts criminal activities, stunting and erratic driving, and late-night partying. This issue has been discussed with the Eaglequest, who are responsible for the area, the City and the Calgary police service. Eaglequest has agreed to lock the gates at night, and police will provide increased patrols of the area. A longer-term solution is being discussed regarding the parking lot.
- Tractor purchase for the Douglasdale rink – This purchase will help make the job of maintaining and cleaning the ice faster and easier for our rink volunteers.
- Rink shack replacement: We have spent the spring and summer working with potential contractors and project managers to help us determine the scope and cost to replace the Douglasdale rink shack. We want to ensure that the community receives a quality product at a competitive price. Much discussion has taken place regarding whether to use volunteer labor and services or to hire a contractor to perform the work on our behalf. Using volunteers is less expensive, however the use of volunteers creates issues and uncertainties around quality, compliance warranties and completion dates. The donation of materials and labor, while appreciated, still requires a level of expertise to ensure that the project is done right. Organizing volunteers over multiple weekends and ensuring that the project is being done according to city bylaws and proper construction standards is beyond the scope of the board. We have therefore made the decision to hire a firm to manage the entire project which includes the design, permitting, removal of the old shack, and construction. The selection of the contractor is being finalized, and design and permitting work will take place over the fall. We expect that construction will not begin until late spring 2018. For this winter, the current building will remain, and a temporary storage container will be moved onsite to house the tractor for the rink.
All these activities require substantial amounts of time and energy by community volunteers. We are lucky that we have great volunteers in our community. We often say that we need more volunteers (and we do). However, it’s important to point out that our community does have a dedicated base of volunteers, who help with many critical functions within the community. These volunteers are often not seen or acknowledged, but year after year they work hard on your behalf for no other reason than they just want to make their community the best place it can possibly be. There are several volunteer groups within the community include that quietly go about their work with little recognition:
- Douglasdale Maintenance Association
- Community Gardens
- Timbits Soccer
- Douglasdale/DouglasGlen Rink Volunteers
These groups contribute greatly to the overall quality of life we have in our community, and we want to thank all the volunteers involved for the contributions they continue to make. We are lucky that we have this dedicated group of volunteers, but we shouldn’t take it for granted that these volunteers will continue in these roles indefinitely. Fresh ideas and faces are always welcomed and appreciated and will be needed to ensure we continue to have enough volunteers to provide the volunteer manpower that the community wants and needs. So, if you have had any thoughts of becoming involved within the community, I would encourage you to contact any of the groups in the community and offer your time.
I look forward to continuing to work with the board and all community members, and encourage you to log onto the website at www.dqca.ca and send us your thoughts and ideas on how to maintain and improve the DouglasQuarry Community Association.
Presidents Message – April:
Every year the community association holds an annual general meeting,
where we review our financial information, review past events and
discuss future activities. Typically we have low attendance and receive
very little feedback from the membership. The AGM provides an opportunity
for the community to come together hear about what’s happening and to
have your ideas and concerns raised. Our AGM this year will be held at 7 pm,
May 3 at Deerfoot Inn and Casino. In an attempt to provide an interesting
and engaging event, we are excited to announce that we have will have a
special guest, Richard White, who will provide his thoughts and observations
on our community and discuss the challenges and opportunities that suburban
communities like DouglasQuarry face in the 21st century. For the past 15
years, Richard has written on topics ranging from public art, parks, pathways,
plazas and urban revitalization in cities large and small. Richard is a monthly
contributor to the Calgary Herald and writes on urban living, urban design and
development, and writes a interesting and insightful blog “everydaytourist.ca”.
We are looking forward to hearing Richard speak, and hope that the community
will come out and support this event.
Our Casino event is scheduled this month on April 13 &14th. We have had a
good response from community members, and have almost all our positions
filled. We could still use a few more volunteers for both of the late evening
shifts, so if you can help please contact me.
By now we should have rolled out the new community dqca.ca website. We
encourage everyone to use the website to get the most up to date information
about community events and initiatives. We will be adding additional content
over the next few weeks to ensure that the information is current and relevant.
If there is something you would like to see or you have suggestions on how
to improve the site we welcome and encourage your feedback. It’s a big
job maintaining a high quality website, and we love to hear from you about
helping with the continued development and maintenance of the site. I know
we have many community members; including seasoned professionals, and
talented young adults in the community who are looking for opportunities to
put their expertise to work and hone their skills. Contact us if you think you
might be interested in helping make our website a high quality resource for our
I would like to thank everyone who has approached me with their ideas and
suggestions, and who have volunteered to help with events, maintain the
rinks, helped with Timbits soccer, the community garden, the maintenance
committees, volunteered on the board, and undertaken many other tasks that
take place around the community. It’s very satisfying to see the willingness
of our members to step up and be part of making DouglasQuarry a great
community to live in. I hope to see lots of the community out to or AGM in
May, and out and about the community as the nice spring weather takes hold.
~ Ken Rossi