Getting Involved — Jayson Faulkner's crazy, fun, positive political adventure 

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When his family moved to West Vancouver in the mid 1960s, the young jack-of-all-sports fell desperately in love with the unique attributes of his new north-shore home. And while Grouse was the local hangout on weekdays —"You couldn't beat the $99 season's pass," he says — Whistler was always his destination on weekends.

And we're not talking casual skiing here. "I remember waking up at 5:30 on Saturday mornings," he says of his teen years, "throwing my ski stuff on and hitchhiking my way up to Whistler (most times standing on the highway in the pouring rain), and then hitchhiking home at the end of the day. It was such a fantastic experience. I'd be totally bagged by the time I got home, but I couldn't wait to do it again on Sunday."

See what I mean? Full-in, full-on, all the time. There's nothing casual about Jayson. He lives the 'just do it' ethos to the max. Whether working or playing, climbing, skiing or hiking, Faulkner gives his all to everything he does. No surprise then to hear that he's applied that philosophy to his new council duties. "It's all about vision," he explains. "I ran so I could participate in creating a new — and dynamic — post-Games vision for Whistler." He pauses. Searches for the right words. "You know," he says, "we kind of got caught drinking our own kool-aid there for a few years. We got sidetracked, distracted from our core strengths..."

And now? "I think this is a very important time for Whistler," he asserts. "As a community we have some really big decisions to make." He stops talking again. Sighs. "From my perspective, the most important thing to remember is that we can't ever divorce ourselves from our physical place. Whistler is all about the interrelationship between this stunning mountain environment and the people who come to live and play here. It's our geography that makes us who we are, defines the kind of people we should be attracting as guests and visitors here. We're not Disneyland. Nor are we Richmond or Surrey or Burnaby. We're Whistler. And we should never forget that!

"I get a little impatient at times with all this 'cultural tourism' talk." He lets a few beats go by. "We already have a culture here. It's called Whistler culture. And its story is all about how we, as a community, have adapted to our beautiful and inspiring mountain surroundings. I think every event we put on in this town should reflect something of that relationship. We already know the power of having people participating rather than just standing there and watching..."


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