Letters to the editor for the week of August 1st 

Grateful for a lively plaza

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It's never too early for Christmas cheer

Christmas came early to Whistler this year — the Rotary Club of Whistler Millennium's "Christmas in July" that is!!

We wish many Merry Christmases and a sleigh full of thanks to Mike Duggan, Kathleen Holton and the whole team at Nita Lake Lodge for the vision and support in making "Christmas in July" a successful fundraiser! This fun event would not have been possible without you, and we look forward to many more. The Victorian Carollers made the whole event so special.

All of our sponsors were full of Christmas spirit and we thank them all so much: Blackcomb Cold Beer & Wine, Brian Brown, Creekbread, Creekside Market, Dairy Queen, Delta Whistler Village Suites, Everyday Pearls, Fairmont Chateau Whistler, Lodging Ovations, Lyn and Alex Stroshin, Mountain Galleries, Nicklaus North, nicobeads, Nita Lake Lodge, Norwex, Peak to Green, R.J. McGregor & Associates, The Core, Whistler Baskets, Whistler Blackcomb — You made the elves' holiday easier, as there was no need to make any new toys. A special thank-you to Santa Claus for taking time out of his relaxing holiday in Whistler to pose for some photos and share in Christmas Cheer. Thank-you all for your support of the Rotary Club of Whistler Millennium!!

Huge Christmas stockings of thanks to everyone who supported the first-time event by inviting their friends and family, enjoying Christmas dinner at Nita Lake Lodge, stocking up on holiday baking, playing our games, and by bidding on our silent auction items. We loved that you enjoyed the Christmas tree, Santa, the carollers and children's crafts on a hot, sunny day in July!

We always appreciate all of our Rotarians who work so hard in support of our causes.  All proceeds from this event fund both community and international projects of the Rotary Club of Whistler Millennium, one of four Rotary clubs in the Sea to Sky area.

Mary Ann Collishaw

President, Rotary Club of Whistler Millennium

Bug BioBlitz bonanza

The seventh annual Whistler BioBlitz at Alpha Lake Park was a huge success, thanks to the great weather and the quality and quantity of scientists. This year's BioBlitz attracted 65 of B.C.'s top scientists and nature educators and included a large contingent from the Royal BC Museum and UBC Biodiversity Museum.

Thanks to everyone who dropped by Alpha Lake Park to see all the amphibians, reptiles, spiders, insects, plants, and fungi at our displays. And thanks also to those who dropped by on Saturday night to learn directly from the scientists and have a chance to see live bats up close.

Preliminary results show about 600 species in total counted over the 24-hour event, of which 50-100 will be new records in Whistler. The results will be collated by the Whistler Biodiversity Project and available on-line within the next few weeks.

The Whistler Naturalists would like to send thanks to: all the scientists and local volunteers, plus our key sponsors the Community Foundation of Whistler and RMOW.

We would also like to thank all the businesses and organizations who contributed to the event: ZipTrek, Tourism Whistler, Whistler Blackcomb, Dusty's Pub, AWARE, Creekside Market, Nesters Market, The Adventure Group, Legends Hotel, Riverside Café, Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council, South Coast Conservation Program, South Coast Bat Action Team, Avalanche Pizza, Whistler Museum, Squamish River Watershed Society, Whistler Golf Club, and Nicklaus North Golf Club.

On behalf of the BioBlitz team, Bob Brett, Kristina Swerhun, Julie Burrow and Melanie Tardif

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