Good Things Happening in Quesnel

June 9, 2021
Council Column

I recently read a book that has a character who had been a prisoner of war. When asked how he survived the horrific conditions he experienced in the prison camp when so many others didn’t, he said that he constantly focused his mind on counting his blessings each day, no matter how small or meagre those blessings may have been at the time.

My Mom has that same attitude and approach to life. Despite being widowed for over ten years now, fighting cancer, and becoming increasingly frail, she never fails to share what’s going well in her day with those she interacts with.

Attitude is everything; especially when we’re living through challenging times. What we focus our minds on during difficulties greatly determines how well we maintain our health, both mental and physical.

Over the past month I’ve had a number of interactions with residents, many new to Quesnel, who’ve told me that they feel good things are happening in our community, despite being on the tail end of a global pandemic. As examples of things that make them feel good about living in Quesnel, they note the amount of construction going on in town, the range of recreation options we have in the community, how good the City looks, how great Reid Street is, how many lovely parks and fun playgrounds we have, and how well maintained our base infrastructure is.

In the main, Quesnel has also weathered this pandemic relatively well, with limited exposures and confirmed cases. Our business community has also reported, again in the majority, that they’ve done relatively well, with some expanding their operations. In part, this is thanks to residents understanding and acting on the need to support our local economy as much as possible during this past year and a half.

Over this same period, we’ve also made major investments in the community, many made achievable with funding from grants. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic we haven’t been able to celebrate these strategic investments as we normally would have; investments like the refresh and upgrade to Spirit Centre, the new Food Hub, the major renovation at the Museum and Visitor Centre, and our new Public Works facility have all flown under the radar during this time.

Despite being very well used, we also haven’t been able to have “grand openings” of our new trail networks and amenities either; like the Wonderland and Dragon Mountain trail networks, the South Quesnel pump park, and the brand-new Fuel Management Trails.

This spring and summer, even more good things will be happening in and around our city. Along with our normal infrastructure program, which is a major annual investment in our community using your tax dollars, substantial grant funding has been obtained to enable us to:

  • build the new municipal campground on the Quesnel River
  • refresh and upgrade the Riverfront Trail along the Fraser River
  • add more trails to the Wonderland and Dragon Mountain trail networks, including new family-oriented entry-level trails
  • rebuild and modernize the Bike Park behind the Recreation Centre
  • plan for the complete repaving of the airport tarmac
  • commence work on a new childcare facility in West Quesnel.

Based on the Province’s COVID restart plan, we’re planning a community celebration of all the good things that are going on in Quesnel for this September. In the meantime, enjoy all that our wonderful community has to offer, get vaccinated, and maintain your sanitation and personal safety routines.

The end is in sight and we have much to celebrate together, in-person, this fall.

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