Showing 62 results

Authority record
South Peace Regional Archives

1995 Grande Prairie Canada Winter Games Host Society

  • SPRA-0603
  • Corporate body
  • 1993-1995

The Canada Games started in February 1967 and are held every two years, alternating between summer and winter games. The 1995 Canada Winter Games were held in Grande Prairie, Alberta from February 19 to March 4, with some additional venues in Jasper. At the time, Grande Prairie was the smallest city to ever host the Games and only the second Alberta city (after Lethbridge in 1975) to do so. Twenty-one sports were featured at the games with 2517 athletes, 617 coaches and managers, 8000 volunteers, and 115 staff. The theme for the Games was “Capture the Vision”.

In January 1989, the federal government announced that the 1995 Games would be held in Alberta. Tom Thompson and George Keen started putting together a bid, enlisting the help of Games consultant Ian Howard and bid volunteers. A Site Evaluation Day was held on September 18, 1990 with representatives of the Canada Games Council and federal government visiting Grande Prairie and Jasper. On November 9, 1990, it was announced that Grande Prairie had won the bid.

The 1995 Grande Prairie Canada Winter Games Host Society incorporated as a not-for-profit organization with a mission: “We are dedicated to creating a positive climate for an unparalleled celebration of sport and culture which will leave the athlete and all those touched by their involvement in the 1995 Canada Games with a legacy rich in memories, new opportunities and pride as Canadians.”
The Host Society Board of Governors was led by Mayor Gord Graydon of Grande Prairie and was composed of the mayors, reeves, and chief executive officers of all cities, town, villages, municipalities, Indian bands, counties, and improvement districts in northwestern Alberta and northeastern BC. The Board of Governors met at least once a year to advise the Host Society on the spirit and values of the Games and to communicate between communities and Society.

The Host Society Board of Directors was also led by Mayor Gord Graydon and was composed of local and regional government representatives, education representatives, venue representatives, and Host Society Management Committee members. The Board of Directors met quarterly to support and advise the Host Society Management Committee in Games preparations and administration and to approve the Society’s capital and operating budgets.

The Host Society Management Committee was led by President H. J. (Tom) Thompson, Senior Vice President Alex Figel, and General Manager Kerry T. Moynihan. The Management Committee had fifteen divisions, each led by a vice-president: Administration/Volunteer Services (Judy Laughy), Athletes’ Village (John Webster), Culture (Carol-Lee Eckhardt), Facilities (George Keen), Finance (Fred Estlin), Friends of the ’95 Games (Bill Bowes and Turk Taylor), Health and Medical Services (Dr. Hilary Wynters), Jasper (Roger Smolnicky), Language Services (Marie Stevens), Legal Counsel (Lyle Carlstrom), Logistics (Bill McCubbin), Marketing (Wayne Jobb), Protocol and Ceremonies (Grant Menzies), Special Projects (Perky McCullough), and Sport (Rick Hryciuk). The Management Committee also included the Executive Assistant to the President (Debbie Smith), Alberta Community Development representative (Dwight Ganske), Federal Government Representative (Sandra Green), and Canada Games Council representatives and met monthly. Divisional volunteers and staff met monthly until January 1995, weekly thereafter, and daily during Games.

The Host Committee obtained $2 million each from the federal, provincial, and municipal governments. They also had additional federal support from the Department of Canadian Heritage, Human Resources Development (Unemployment Insurance Job Creation Program), Department of National Defence, Translation Bureaus, and for Canada House; additional provincial support from Environmental Protection, Public Works (Supply and Safety), Transportation and Utilities, Alberta Health, Alberta Community Development and Alberta Foundation of the Arts, and Alberta Lotteries; and additional municipal support with facilities, venues, services, and capital funding for the Canada Games Arena. Major Sponsors and Official Suppliers included Pepsi/Gray Beverages Inc., Xerox Canada, Sun Ice Ltd., Weyerhaueser, AGT Ltd., AGT Mobility, AGT Directory, County of Grande Prairie, General Motors of Canada, Air Canada, Alberta Tourism Education Council/Alberta Best, IGA, CBC/SRC, UNISYS, Daily Herald Tribune, Bowes Publishers Limited, The Calgary and Edmonton Suns, Alberta Power/Northwestern Utilities/ATCO Ltd., Canada Post, Dairy Farmers of Canada. Numerous other businesses and individuals also contributed on a smaller scale to make up a total of $3.35 million plus $3.8 million in gifts in kind.

The Canada Games Arena and Wapiti Nordic Ski Centre were constructed as venues and renovations were also made to the Johnny MacDonald Arena and Grande Prairie Regional College. A temporary Athlete’s village was also constructed.

Week One of the Games started with the February 19, 1995 Opening Ceremonies, including song and dance presentations, several addresses from dignitaries, lighting of the flame, and Colin James concert. Week One sports included Alpine Skiing (Jasper, Marmot Basin), Badminton (GPRC), Cross Country Skiing (Wapiti Nordic Ski Centre), Fencing (St. Joseph Catholic High School), Freestyle Skiing (Jasper’s Marmot Basin), Men’s Hockey (Canada Games Arena, Dave Barr Arena, Sexsmith Civic Centre, Wembley Rec-Plex), Judo (Grande Prairie Composite High School), Rhythmic Gymnastics (GPRC), Ringette (Beaverlodge Arena, Dave Barr Arena, Johnny MacDonald Arena), Shooting (Crystal Park School), Short Track Speed Skating (Johnny MacDonald Arena), Long Track Speed Skating (outside Leisure Centre Oval), and Wheelchair Basketball (Jasper Activity Centre).

Week Two sports included Artistic Gymnastics (GPRC), Biathlon (Wapiti Nordic Ski Centre), Boxing (Bowes Family Crystal Gardens), Curling (Grande Prairie Curling Rink), Figure Skating (Canada Games Arena), Women’s Hockey (Dave Barr Arena, Johnny MacDonald Arena), Squash (Grande Prairie Fitness Centre Squash Courts), Synchronized Swimming (Leisure Centre), Table Tennis (Grande Prairie Composite High School), and Weightlifting (GPRC Theatre). Week Two wrapped up with the Closing ceremonies at Canada Games Arena, including dignitaries, the Parade of Athletes, the Legend of the Northern Lights production, singer Michelle Wright, special awards, and the passing of the torch to Brandon, Manitoba as the next Host City.

5th Trumpeter Swan Troop Boy Scouts

  • SPRA-0392
  • Corporate body
  • [ca. 1965]-unknown

Grande Prairie had an active Boy Scout movement in the 1960s as evidenced by this group of "Owls" and "Wolves" with their troop leaders. At that time a boy at 11 years of age could join as a Tenderfoot and aspire to eventually become a "Queen's Scout". The boys learned practical life saving skills following their motto, "Be Prepared" and as well performing community service projects.

A.J. Watt family

  • SPRA-0144
  • Family

A.J. Watt was born Albert Edward Watts in Suderland, Ontario on December 23, 1873 to Samuel and Bridgit Watts. On December 29, 1897, in the Diocese of Toronto, he married Mary Frances Purvis, of the Township of Brock. The couple had two children: Ernest Russell born Feb. 19, 1899, and Earl Edward born August 26, 1903.
In 1906 the family moved to Dundurn, Saskatchewan, and in 1914 to the Grande Prairie area, coming in over the Edson Trail, a month-long trip. They filed on three homesteads in the Flying Shot area, the home place being SW 3-71-6-W6. Ernie and Earl completed their schooling at Flying Shot Lake School and supplimented the family income by trapping – mostly coyotes.
By 1924, Albert Edward Watts was going by the name Arthur James Watt. In 1951, when the Old Age Security Act was passed, he applied to the federal government for a birth certificate under that name in order to prove that he qualified for the pension; the reply stated that there was no record of his birth. He then re-applied under the name Albert Edward Watts. No explanation is available for the change of name, but all income tax, correspondence and family stories in the Along the Wapiti history book are recorded under the name Arthur James Watt.
Ernie took out his own homestead, SE 31-70-6-W6, and he and A.J. farmed together. During the 1930s Ernie and Earl worked in the Globe coal mine.
Mary Frances Watt passed away in 1944, and A.J. Watt in 1957. Earl married Olive Ethel Mutch and lived first in High Prairie and then Grande Prairie. He passed away in 1978. Ernie continued to farm the three homesteads as well as Dr. Little’s homestead. In later life he resided in Wild Rose Manor and then Mackenzie Place. He died in 1998 at age 99.

Arts, Education, and Commerce Department of the Grande Prairie Regional College

  • SPRA-0167
  • Corporate body
  • Unknown

Gathering Story: History by the People was a project of the instructors in the Arts, Education and Commerce Department of the Grande Prairie Regional College. It began in 2002 with the vision of honouring and preserving the unwritten stories of Indigenous people of the Peace River Region. Importance was placed on respecting the integrity of the peoples and their cultures, so the event was held at a traditional Beaver site, now Dunvegan Historical campsite, on the Peace River. The organizers of the Story Gathering Weekend included Indigenous elders and sought to celebrate Indigenous heritage through telling, recording and preserving their stories. Importance was placed on respecting the integrity of the peoples and their cultures. Initially the focus was on the traditional Beaver Band #152 which was seen as “the Band that was left out” as they were never given a land base, but participation broadened as other groups became interested. The event was held in 2002, 2003 and 2004. The stories in this fonds were recorded at the May, 2004 gathering.

Belcourt, Mary

  • SPRA-0179
  • Person
  • [ca. 1900]-1972

Mary Belcourt Davis was born Mary Jane Belcourt in Slave Lake ca. 1900, the daughter of Betsy Calliou and the grand-daughter of Louie Calliou and Annie Donald. She appears on the 1901 Census as living in the Grand Prairie area along with the Iroquois Metis families around Flying Shot Lake. Her age at that time is noted as “9”, but is probably 9 months, as on the 1911 census her age is listed as 11 years. The same census shows her father as Pierre Belcourt and two siblings–Norman, aged 9, and Selina, aged 5.

Mary’s grandfather, Louie Calliou, was an Iroquois-Cree Metis born in Edmonton ca. 1854. His father, Louis L’Iroquois (Calliou), was an expert canoe man, guide and hunter who came west with his brother Bernard to work for the Hudson Bay Company or the North-West Trading Company. The young Louis married Annie Donald, from Winnipeg, and their children were born in Edmonton, Stony Plain, Slave Lake and Lac St. Ann. Mary’s mother, Betsy (Betsi) Calliou was born in Lac St. Ann ca. 1878. In the late 1800s the family moved to the Flying Shot Lake area. Later Betsy also lived at Sturgeon Lake.

Mary Belcourt spent her childhood at Flying Shot Lake and her teen years in the newly-formed town of Grande Prairie. She worked at the Donald Hotel and enjoyed going to dances throughout the south Peace with friends such as Liz LeClerc and cousins Jim, Mac and Henry Ferguson. They were the sons of St. Pierre Ferguson and Philomene Calliou, sister to Mary’s father Louis Calliou. Another of St. Pierre’s daughters, Mary, was married to DeWinter.

In 1930 Mary married Thomas Davis, and the couple had four children: Vera Kathleen, Harry Thomas (Ira), Evelyn Bertha and Norman Robert. When Mary was pregnant with Norman in the late 1930s, the couple moved to Edmonton where the two girls were placed in the O’Connell Institute and Ira was left in St. Mary’s Boys Home. In 1939, Tom enlisted in the war and was gone six years. His family, together again, lived on the army pay in Edmonton near the downtown core.

Mary would often tell her children that it was better that no one knew they had “Indian” blood. When she would talk to friends in Cree, she would tell her grandchildren she was speaking French. Mary spent her last years living with her daughters and died in 1972.

Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau

  • SPRA 0675
  • Corporate body
  • 1969-present

The Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau (GPVSB) was originally established in 1969 and was incorporated in 1983. GPVSB is a registered charity and is governed by a Board of Directors. The organization provides advisory, resource and support services for community organizations in the city of Grande Prairie and the surrounding area. The GPVSB promotes and supports volunteerism within the community by providing support and training for volunteers in the non-profit sector, and through celebrations such as National Volunteer Day and International Volunteer Day. The GPVSB is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of community members.

McNaughton, Walter William

  • SPRA 0666
  • Person
  • [ca. 1911]-2006

Walter William McNaughton hitchhiked and cycled his way from Manville, AB to Berwyn, AB to start the Peace River Bible School in October 1933. The trip covered 900 kilometers. The school moved to Grande Prairie the next year and then to its permanent location in Sexsmith in 1935.

McNaughton was born ca. 1911. He worked as an electrician, an educator, and was a passionate evangelist, preaching at many schoolhouses and churches in the region. He went to university at the age of 56, receiving his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from the University of Alberta. He was married to Beth, who predeceased him in 2005. They had four children: David, Evangeline {Thiessen], Ruth [Enns], and Malcom.

McNaughton died in January 2006.

Peace Country Historical Society

  • SPRA 0668
  • Corporate body
  • 2009-present

In 2008, a Heritage Symposium held at the Grande Prairie Regional generated the idea to form a new chapter of the Historical Society of Alberta to serve the Peace Region. At a meeting held in December, the idea was approved and, under the guidance of Campbell Ross, a steering committee was formed to draw up Goals, a Mission statement, & Bylaws.

In 2009, the Peace Country Historical Society, following a membership drive and consultation with the proper authorities on bylaws, became a legally recognized society and an official branch of the Historical Society of Alberta. The society covers the northwest section of the province from Highway 16 west to Highway 40 then north to Grande Cache. From there to Grande Prairie, then Highway 2 north to Grimshaw then 43 north to the border with the Northwest Territories.

Stewart, Colleen

  • SPRA-0690
  • Person
  • 1945-unknown

Colleen Stewart, born in April 1942, was the first of five children born to Henry and Jean Wagner of Goodfare Alberta.

In 1965, Colleen, along with her husband Joseph (Joe) and son Terry, moved to Prince George British Columbia. After encouragement from her mother, who had recently began painting herself, Colleen began painting in 1978. She was a self-taught artist who took inspiration from the Group of Seven, Emily Carr, and Euphemia McNaught. Colleen began exhibiting her art work in 1981 in both group and individual shows. One particular show, called “East of the Rockies – West of the Rockies” featured artwork from herself and her mother Jean Wagner, who was an artist from Beaverlodge.

In 1996, Colleen began making art in the form of quilts. The themes of these art pieces centered on the human condition, rather than the Northern BC landscape which were the predominant themes of her oil paintings. According to Colleen, one of her favourite materials to use in quilts were men’s neckties.

Colleen and her husband Joe moved to Fort St. James following Joe’s retirement in 1996 where Colleen continued working on her art.

Stewart’s art was made part of the permanent collections of the Two Rivers Gallery in Prince George, The Queen Elizabeth II Hospital in Grande Prairie, and the BC Provincial Government. Her artwork was added to many private collections including private collections in places as far away as New Zealand, Australia, and Germany.

Vader-Grimm Family

  • SPRA-0676
  • Family
  • 1800-present

Daniel Vader was born on November 11, 1877 in Napanee, Ontario. He was the youngest son of John and Esther (nee Grieves) Vader, who originally came from Sophiasburgh Township near Demorestville, in the Province of Upper Canada. Many of John’s brothers went to California and later settled in Calgary. John, along with his parents, William and Isabell (nee Black) Vader eventually moved to what is now Belleville. The family had been fairly well established before moving from Sphiasburgh but by the time Daniel was a young man, the family fortunes had waned. His father’s untimely death when Daniel was only five years old meant he was looking for work at a young age with only limited schooling. He made his way West working at logging and lumber camps, as well as working as a carpenter and cook, before moving to Calgary as a carpenter.

Ethel May Scott was born in Dawse, North Dakota, USA on June 13, 1888. She was the youngest child of Henry and Eliza Scott. The family moved to Calgary while Ethel was an infant. She met Daniel Vader while living in Calgary and they married on Boxing Day in 1910. Several years later Daniel moved to Prince George, BC for work, then to a homestead 9 miles North East of Spirit River where his wife, two children (Alice and Edith), and Eliza Scott joined him in 1916. They moved into the town of Spirit River in 1919. Daniel and Ethel Vader raised 11 children together (Alice, Edith, Gladys, Grace, Hilda, James [Jim], Eleanor, Gwen, Dana, Colleen [Dolly], and Delbert [Sonny]). Edith was born on February 16, 1914 in Calgary. Their son, Jim Vader, died while serving in World War II. Daniel Vader died on July 25, 1957 after a fall from a porch roof he was repairing. Ethel died 15 years later on June 29, 1972. Both are buried in the Spirit River Cemetery.

In 1813, John and Margaret (nee Everhart) Grimm married in Jefferson County, Ohio, USA. They eventually moved to Wisconsin, where they died and are buried. Of their nine children, one son, Henry, born 25 Mar 1824, married Catherine Bowers. Henry and Catherine eventually settled with their family near Walnut Grove, Nebraska. One of their sons, Lorenzo Grimm, later married Mary Eleanor Warner of Oklahoma. Lorenzo, Mary, and their family moved several times, including to Saskatchewan and Sioux City before finally settling in Rycroft, Alberta. Lorenzo and Mary had eight children together (Eva, Edith, Asa, Ora, Goldie, Silva, Rainier [Ray], and Ruby). Mary Grimm passed away in 1943. In 1944, Lorenzo married Jenny Whitehall.

Ora Curtis Grimm was born on January 26, 1899 in Lynch, Nebraska. His early education took place at Grimton school, which was named after the family. In 1911, the family moved to Trossacks, Saskatchewan where he finished his education. He went on to complete the Automobile and Gas Tractor Engineer program at Hemphills Trade School Ltd. in Regina in 1920. The family moved to the Spirit Valley District (NE of Spirit River) then to Rycroft. Ora farmed with his father, eventually buying land from Doc Calkin, P.J. Nigel, and Revillion, as well as his father’s land when Lorenzo passed away in 1950.

The Vader and Grimm families came together with the marriage of Ora Grimm to Edith Vader on July 6, 1943. Ora was 44 and Edith 29 when they married. They lived and farmed 2 miles west of Rycroft, Alberta. Ora and Edith had three children: Norma Jean born in 1944, Elnor May born in 1945, and Ray Curtis Bryan born in 1950. Ora died on October 18, 1965 and Edith on January 1, 2011. Ray took over the farm several years after his father, Ora, passed away. Elnor passed away in 2017.

Results 1 to 10 of 62