Fall Recreation Update November 2009

With the summer gone, the Kitimat Recreation Department fall programming is in full swing.  This fall the Kitimat Recreation Department saw strong registration for both pre-kindergarten programs and adult courses.  Several additional classes were added to the planned pre-school line up in order to accommodate everyone.  We also created three new adult dance classes: Belly Dance; African Dance; and Latin Dance. 
Fall fitness classes continue to boom for the Kitimat Recreation Department and with the pool facility open Aquafit classes have been added to the line-up.   The public can register for everything from Yoga or Pilates to beginner fitness classes or hard core workouts.  There are also running and walking programs.  Many of the sport groups in town have contracted the recreation department to do dry land conditioning programs for their participants.

Senior programs continue to be received well by those members of the public who are 55 years and older.  Seniors can partake in everything from Tai Chi to an Investment Club.  Some of the most popular programs are Fitness for Seniors, Quilting and Painting.  The population of seniors in Kitimat continues to grow each year and the Seniors Programmer is constantly on the go organizing new programs along with old favourites.  For more information contact the Senior Citizens Association – Branch 129 at kitsca@citywest.ca.

On September 12th the Recreation Department, in conjunction with several Provincial and local groups, hosted a tree planting program at Riverlodge Recreation Centre.   Some 400 boxwood trees were planted to beatify the facility, to teach people about the importance of tree planting programs and to help keep the environment healthy.  Participants were also able to take home evergreen saplings to plant at home, in their own neighbourhood or in the forest. 

This fall Automated External Defibrillator (AED) units were installed in both ice rinks and Riverlodge Recreation Centre.  The units for the ice rinks were donated by the Kitimat Minor Hockey Association in memory of a former participant who passed away this summer.  The municipality purchased a third unit for Riverlodge Recreation Centre.  A unit was acquired previously for Sam Lindsay Aquatic Centre.

Kick It Up Kitimat and the Kitimat Recreation Department hosted a Women's Wellness Roman Spa Night on October 16th.  Forty-two participants enjoyed Sam Lindsay Aquatic Centre amenities, mini spa sessions, an aquatic fitness sampler, refreshments and snacks.  A key note speaker, Farah Moolji – The Smiling Yogi, was brought in to speak on yoga and lead the participants through a 60-minute yoga workout along with breathing exercises.   The next day many of the participants enjoyed taking part in the “Chocolate Bliss” program, which focused on the benefits of chocolate, healthy chocolate recipes, nutritional differences for various chocolates, chocolate cooking demonstrations and free recipes.

The Kitimat Recreation Department and Kitamaat Village Council continue to build their partnership with joint advertising of recreation programs both in Kitamaat Village and the District of Kitimat.  Swim lessons for children attending Haisla Community School and preschoolers from the C'imoca Child Care Center were run this fall and will continue in early 2010.  Planning for the 6th Annual Kitamaat Basketball Tournament, www.kitimatbasketball.com, has started with the tournament scheduled for April 9, 10, & 11, 2010.  Finally the Kitimat Recreation Department and Haisla Tourism have joined forces to rebuild several trails in Kitimat.  The municipality is supplying the funding and Haisla Tourism is supplying the labour and equipment.

Swim lessons and lifeguard training was well received by the public this fall.  The usual range of preschool and youth classes were held.  Bronze Cross and Bronze Medallion classes are running through both local high school physical education classes and as a separate class after school.  A Lifesaving Instructor course was also held in November for qualified candidates.

With both rinks running full-tilt, minor hockey, figure skating and adult hockey leagues are off the ground for another ice season.  The Kitimat Ice Demons, AAA Men's Senior Hockey, have put forward another competitive team for the Central Interior Hockey League 2009/10 season.  The games are well-attended and used as a healthy family-oriented social gathering for the whole community.

The annual Recreation Department and community “Hallowe'en Howl” was held on October 30th at Riverlodge Recreation Centre.  The program attracted approximately 300 children and their parents.  This event was a true community event with organizations and businesses throughout Kitimat volunteering their time to provide penny carnival activities for the kids.   High school students were involved in a big way, donating their time dressed in costumes to provide activities for the younger kids. This year was extra special: the first year of a dance zone for parents and kids to get their groove on.  Near the end of the night a handful of kids tried out their vocal cords on the Karaoke machine.  Admission was by donation to the Kitimat Food Bank.  A howling good time was had by all.

The Annual Fall Craft Fair was held on November 6th and 7th, 2009 at Riverlodge Recreation Center.  Approximately 2,500 visitors and 130 vendors from all over the northwest took part in this event.  Persons purchased everything from paintings and crafts for their homes to Christmas gifts for family and friends. 

This fall the Recreation Department's “Leisure Access Program” has continued to see increasing participation.  An addition was made to the program this fall to help individuals on employment insurance play adult hockey.  Qualifying individuals receive a 50% reduction on ice fees paid to their league and the league receives the equivalent reduction on their ice bill.  Applications to both the Canadian Tire Jumpstart and KidSport programs were also up this fall.  Both organizations supportive Kitimat who wish to participate in various activities. 

Planning for the Annual Winter Festival d'Hiver has started.  The event will be taking place from January 28th to February 1st, 2010.  The Maple Syrup Festival, dog sled races, a rail jam / skiing competition, the Olympic Torch Relay and more will be part of the overall festival.    The Winter Festival d'Hiver will be run by Association des Francophones et Francophiles (AFFNO) with assistance from the District of Kitimat, the Kitimat Chamber of Commerce, and many private businesses and community groups.  Persons from Kitimat, Terrace and the whole northwest region will attend.

Winter recreation programs will start in December with the various Christmas programs and the Annual First Night Event on New Year's Eve.  The Winter Recreation Guide is due out on November 28th and registration start on December 5th for programs in 2010.     For more information on the Kitimat Recreation Department visit www.kitimat.ca.