On Saturday, April 21, 2012, the sunshine and more than 3000 people came out for the biggest and best Earth Day event ever held in Maple Ridge! Memorial Peace Park was bursting at the seams, with a multitude of entertainers, activities, demos and displays in every corner of the park and the Arts Centre and Theatre during the four-hour community party.
The very first Earth Day was the spark that inspired the Ridge Meadows Recycling Society, so we tied our 40th Anniversary party in with the annual Earth Day celebrations in Maple Ridge. We wanted to make it a big event and create an atmosphere of celebration and recognition for all the ways the community supports the environment. It was a team effort, and everybody worked hard to create interesting green activities and displays celebrating nature & the outdoors, innovation & technology, community, and families.
Tying in our 40th anniversary raised the profile of the event, but its success was due in large part to a partnership with the ever-popular Haney Farmer’s Market, and good luck in benefiting from one of the first sunny days of Spring.
Eileen Dwillies, Market Manager of the Haney Farmer’s Market Society said, “What an exciting Earth Day for the vendors of the Haney Farmers Market. Good weather, lively entertainment and early vegetables brought smiles to the faces of our customers. The collaboration and hard work of the steering committee paid off.”
The partnership between Earth Day and the Haney Farmer’s Market is a natural one and the market is a big draw, especially after a long winter. Everyone was well-organized and prepared so we kept our fingers crossed for the weather. The beautiful day was the clincher.
Success was also due to the strong level of support from the District of Maple Ridge, Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows Parks and Leisure Services staff and staff from the ACT. Thank you!
In past years RMRS organized Earth Day festivities to coincide with composter bin distributions and other recycling initiatives. A few years ago we passed the torch to the CEED Centre Society, and the event outgrew the CEED site and moved to the downtown park. This celebration was really a return to roots for us!
We appreciate the partnership with the Haney Farmer’s Market, the CEED Centre Society, Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association, Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition, Adopt-A-Block, Maple Ridge Library, “C” is for Comedy Events, and everyone else who worked so hard on Earth Day this year. It was everything we wanted our 40th celebration to be!
Her causes have been many – social inclusion & poverty issues, environmental conservation & recycling, arts advocacy & local festivals to name a few – but her projects and the organizations that have benefitted from her involvement are too numerous to count.
“I cannot think of anyone more deserving than Candace. In making her contributions Candace has made many friends of all ages and from every walk of life. She brings wisdom and good cheer to each organization. We are so fortunate to have Candace as a Maple Ridge citizen.” -Linda King
Candace’s 2012 Citizen of the Year Acceptance Speech:
“I wish first to thank the Maple Ridge Community Foundation for the honour of choosing me to be Citizen of the Year. I want to acknowledge my fellow nominees in whose august company I find myself, all of whom are distinguished and equally deserving of this honour.
I am filled with gratitude to Julie Koehn, my nominator, known to us as “Mother Recycling,” whom I have known and volunteered with since first moving to Maple Ridge. Julie, I can now forgive you for making me play Garbage Gus in the recycling puppet plays.
Thank you to the Recycling Society, celebrating 40 years of leading the way as a community-based, not-for-profit business and the largest worksite in the province of persons with developmental disabilities. Also thanks to Kim Day, the current Executive Director, and to Kelli Speirs, our long-serving, retired Executive Director.
Thank you to Leanne Koehn, who organized the many support letters. Leanne first came to the recycling depot in a cardboard box where she slept while her parents loaded newspaper into a trailer. She became our first bursary winner in Environmental Studies and last year we welcomed her back as Communications Manager where she has efficiently herded us older folks into the 21st Century and the realm of social media.
The Haney Farmer’s Market worked with the Recycling Society to put forward my nomination. Thank you to Eileen and Paul Dwillies and to the entire board who insisted on each signing my letter of support.
To the Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows and Katzie Community Network, the largest community planning table in the Lower Mainland, thank you for your support.
And last but certainly not least, the dear friends that wrote such kind words supporting my nomination.
Volunteering weaves the social fabric of our town, builds community capacity and strengthens our resiliency.
Volunteering provides us with an opportunity for leadership roles, offers us a place to champion our passions and it builds solid networks of warm friendships.
It takes a village to raise a child, but it takes strong networks and volunteers to build a vibrant and resilient community. If you want to be happy, do not aim for happiness. Be of service to others and it will come to you.
This honour is a testament to all of you that I have had the privilege of volunteering with and to all of you here tonight who have strived to make a difference and help shape Marvellous Maple Ridge.”
In Spring of 2012, we will start using our brand-new Education & Events Trailer! Packed full of everything we need for workshops and off-site booths & displays, the trailer also introduces our 6 new “Recycling Characters” and includes a list of items accepted at the Maple Ridge Recycling Depot. Thanks to Farnsworth Design & SpeedPro Signs for making it all happen!
We enjoyed making a presentation about Ridge Meadows Recycling to the Rotary Club of Haney on Wednesday, April 4. Thank you to Carly Ferguson for inviting us and a big thank you to Rotary Club of Haney for all you do for our community and the world!
On Friday, March 9, Ridge Meadows Recycling Society was honoured to receive the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Award for Community Service. Thank you everyone, for your support and thank you to the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Chamber of Commerce for doing such a good job organizing the awards and recognizing local businesses. Congratulations to all winners & nominees!
“Starting in February the temporary gallery in the Maple Ridge Museum will be co-curating an exhibition alongside the Ridge Meadows Recycling Society. Chronicling from thrift to modern day up-cycling, the exhibition will look at various repurposed tools, extending what the term recycling really means. The exhibit will also display the history of the Ridge Meadows Recycling through various artifacts and photographs.”
“Check out the Looking Back column from the Maple Ridge News, “Thrifty Business”, for more information on recycling and some of the artefacts you’ll see in the exhibit.
The exhibition will run from February 1st until the end of April. Stop by Sunday or Wednesday from 1-4pm for a visit!”
The Maple Ridge Museum & Archives is located at 22520 – 116th Avenue, Maple Ridge, BC
On January 30, 2012, BC Premier Christy Clark and MLA Marc Dalton visited the Maple Ridge Recycling Depot to celebrate Ridge Meadows Recycling’s 40th Anniversary. More photos posted on our Facebook page.
In recognition of Waste Reduction Week in Canada, Mason Parkhill, a 4-year-old Maple Ridge resident, will be named Ridge Meadows Recycling Society’s 2011 Recycler of the Year at the Maple Ridge Council Chambers at the regular council meeting on Tuesday, October 11.
Mason’s interest in recycling began with a friendly garbage collector and his garbage truck. This led to his interest in Maple Ridge’s recycling trucks with their unique, multiple compartments and how things get recycled. “From there (Mason) just started asking more and more questions and was really interested in all of it!” says his mother, Amanda. For his fourth birthday, Mason and his friends went on a tour of the Ridge Meadows Recycling Depot, located just off River Road in the Albion Industrial Park. Free tours of the depot are given to local schools and community groups, as well as an annual visit from BCIT Environmental Health students.
With his natural curiosity and the awareness that came from helping sort his family’s recycling each week, plus encouragement from his family and educational books, toys, & games, Mason began applying his knowledge to the world around him and noticed some things weren’t quite right. So he wrote a letter to the Maple Ridge mayor & council: “Hi! My name is Mason Parkhill and I’m four years old. I’m really interested in recycling and garbage. I’ve noticed that most garbage bins at bus stops are full of recyclable materials, mostly pop and water bottles. I would like to see recycle bins attached to all bus stops next to the garbage cans. It would also be a good idea to have recycle bins in schoolyards and parks. I look forward to hearing what you think of my idea. Yours truly, Mason Parkhill (with help from my mom).”
Mason’s awareness of how our actions affect the world around us, his concern about the environment he’ll be growing up in, and he and his family’s commitment to taking action to make the world a better place led Ridge Meadows Recycling Society naming him their 2011 “Recycler of the Year.” Maple Ridge Mayor Ernie Daykin agrees. Says Daykin, “It’s really cool that somebody that’s four years old is already environmentally responsible and thinking about what would make his community better.”
Congratulations Mason, and the whole Parkhill family!