My inbox was flooded with great stories when I put out a call to my Lethbridge College colleagues to share their love of winter sports and activities with me for this, the “ice issue” of Wider Horizons.
With replies that were almost poetic, they told me about why they loved skiing, snowboarding, skating, camping, hiking and hanging out in the snow and cold during the winter months. These stories are featured throughout our special “Nice Work” section of the magazine, where you can also read about alumni and staff members whose work or leisure time is somehow connected to the cold. This issue also introduces readers to a Conservation Enforcement alumnus who held one of the country’s most unusual jobs for six years, serving as the polar bear jail warden (of sorts) in the northern town of Churchill, Manitoba, which is situated in the middle of a migratory path for about 800 polar bears each year. You’ll also see ice showcased in other ways – from the photo of our president in action at a Hurricanes hockey game to a recipe for delicious gelato and much more.
This issue also shows the fun celebration the college community had at the opening of our new trades and technologies facility, as well as some stories of the donors who have supported the efforts to make plans for the first phase – which opened Sept. 30 – and the second phase – which will open in the fall of 2017 – a reality. But aside from these stories and the heat and smoke of Rob Parson’s driving demo on the day of the opening, this issue of Wider Horizons is all about ice, snow and cold.
Working on these stories throughout the fall got me thinking about my own ways of getting through the long nights of winter – by heading out to walk, hike or ski whenever possible. Basking in the sun and savouring the blue skies seems to be just the fix for me, any time of year.
Skiing especially is wrapped up in memories of my dad, who taught me to ski when I was four. A few times each winter, we would head out to the slopes, singing John Denver songs on the chairlifts and nibbling on the Tootsie Rolls and Hershey Kisses he had stuffed in our pockets (treats that were usually not found in our house). The first time I skied with my husband’s family – all of whom are beautiful skiers – I was shocked to learn that not only did they not sing on the lifts, but they didn’t bring any snacks! I have made sure our kids carry forward the traditions of both families, John Denver songs and all.
We hope you enjoy this chilly issue of Wider Horizons, and as always, we encourage you to send your thoughts on this issue or ideas for future issues to WHMagazine@lethbridgecollege.ca.