Letters to the editor for the week of September 6th, 2012 

Chivalry is not dead

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Visiting from Winnipeg, I had come to visit my best friend, in Lions Bay. It has been four years since I've been to B.C., and we decided we needed a road trip! Tyax Wilderness Resort was our destination, a real "Supernatural B.C." experience.

Packed and ready to go......and yes, The Hurley River Road was open, so our journey could begin. Driving up the Sea to Sky highway was beautiful and the Pemberton Valley, very luscious. When we arrived at the Hurley River Road it was rough, but doable. Windows open, music playing, excited for our adventure we were on our way...up and beyond! We were about 15 minutes up the road, rounded a corner and we heard PPPPPPHHHHHSSSSSSS!!! I thought it was a rattlesnake. Yes, I am from the prairies, so what do I know. I turned to my girlfriend and asked, "Is that a rattlesnake?"

She replied, "No, worse, it's a flat tire."

We both looked at each other, got out of the truck quite slowly, heading to the back of the truck to locate the spare tire. Neither of us B.A.G.S. (Beautiful Aging Goddesses) had ever changed a flat tire. And perched on the side of a logging road, without cellular phone coverage were unable to call for help.

I walked in front of the vehicle praying, hoping, someone would drive by to help. In no less than five minutes, not one, but two trucks stopped, and out jumped a group of fishermen. They did not hesitate (to help). (They) started pulling gear out of the truck, located the jack, the tools to lower the spare from the truck, and had the truck raised, tire off, spare tire on...all within 15 minutes! While this was going on another truck stopped and asked if we needed assistance in getting the tire repaired. Coincidently, his son worked at a tire repair shop in Pemberton. As it was getting close to closing time at the shop he would be happy to give them a call as soon as he was down the hill and give them the heads up we would return to Pemberton to have a flat repaired...and to please stay open for us. (Thank you Sir)!

We drove back down the Hurley on our way to Pemberton, and arrived at Black's Hot Wheels just before closing. They had been expecting us, repaired the flat in a flash, replaced the spare in its housing, so we could continue on our amazing trip. Thank you for your customer service plus!

We would like to thank the wonderful gentleman from the Whistler Fishing Guides — www.whistlerfishingguides.ca and their clients. The group of them has restored our faith in the kindness of people. Thank you to all for taking the time... you took a situation that was very concerning to us and made it very special! A road trip never to be forgotten...Chivalry is not dead!

Kelly Jennings and Mary Ann Sorenson

Winnipeg

Inspired

I wanted to take this opportunity to send out a huge thanks and congratulations to all of my Helly Hansen Relay teammates that competed in the inaugural Meet Your Maker 50 mile (80+ km's) trail running race that went down this past weekend here in our amazing backyard.

We started out running together in June on our Helly Hansen Trail Training Tuesday clinics with the goal of expanding our trail knowledge and training towards being able to enter a relay team for this epic event. Over the course of the summer we had 80 different runners join us over the course of 12 weeks and not only entered one team of seven, but two teams and a solo athlete! The camaraderie that developed among this group of all ages (20s to 60s) has been amazing to watch and I am proud and inspired having run alongside some really amazing people. It really speaks volumes about the diversity of people we have living here and yet how much we all have in common.

We here at Helly Hansen want to send a massive thank you and congratulations to the crew at 5 Peaks and the Meet Your Maker 50 organizers and volunteers for putting on an unbelievable event that showcased how truly amazing and humbling this valley's trail networks really are and how many amazing, some may say crazy, athletes there are out there.

Having run a leg of the race, I would also like to extend my appreciation to everyone that lives in the valley for allowing us to do what we did. From the gathering of supporters and onlookers at the relay stations and the finish line, to the downhillers in the bike park that stopped during their laps to allow our runners to keep their pace, to all the cross country riders/hikers that put up with all the essential flagging and signage throughout the trails.

I personally would like to thank Chris Kennedy, from Black Diamond Fitness, for all his efforts coaching us Tuesday evenings, as well as taking on the task of being Course Director for the amazing track that was laid out for us. Chris is a professional, a gentleman and an amazing runner who has inspired all of us to be better.

We live in a beautiful place and there is nothing better than exploring it with fantastic people. I personally am looking forward to next spring and getting started on training for next year's event(s) and for now, seeing as our HH Tuesday Night Clinics have wrapped up, trail running will continue with the crew from the Whistler Running Club on Tuesdays evenings, updates will be on theirs and our Facebook pages — Whistler Running Club & Helly Hansen Whistler.

The sport of trail running is growing so get out there and explore, enter races, volunteer at events, or start running with a group like ours here at Helly Hansen or Salomon or the Whistler Running Club. It is truly amazing where you'll end up!

Jeff Grant

Store Manager, Helly Hansen Westin

Leash your pets!

Early last Sunday evening, I was cycling the Valley Trail near the Whistler Golf Course with my 15-month-old daughter on the baby seat in front of me, when I saw two women out power walking with their dog — off the leash. Being a cautious cyclist, I slowed down, and it was a good thing too because the glossy, black dog swerved out into the trail in front of me causing me to pull hard on the brakes and stop suddenly (dangerously) to avoid crashing into him.

I got off my bike, and waited for the women to catch up to their dog and me. I politely asked them if they would mind putting their dog back on the leash, to avoid accidents to the dog, or me and my child, or other Valley Trail users. I have never been so surprised as when these two nicely dressed, older women told me, in front of my baby girl, to "F*** off," move on, and that their dog doesn't need to be on a leash on the valley trail.

Whistler dog owners, and visitors, for your dog's sake, please leash them! Dogs aren't robots and they don't walk in straight lines; they are naturally attracted to sights, smells, sounds, and they run and veer and leap and bound all over just like dogs are meant to. But in Whistler parks and on the valley trail, where they share the lane with cyclists and pedestrians, it's a good idea, as well as a Whistler bylaw, to have your dog leashed to avoid them getting run over, run into, or causing accidents. I don't want to hurt your dog, and I don't want your dog to be the cause of hurt to my family or me.

I'm trying really hard to teach my daughter to love dogs as I do — she delights in seeing them and shows a lot of affection towards them. We always approach dogs respectfully, asking their owners if they are OK with children, and letting the dogs know who we are, talking to them before even trying to pet them gently. If only dog owners would show the same respect towards children!

An off-leash dog bounding up to a young child — a dog that may be the same size, or bigger than the child — could really frighten them. Even a friendly dog "that doesn't usually do that," suddenly jumping up on them, possibly knocking them over, taking food from their hand, or licking them in the face (however affectionately meant), may cause a child to be afraid of dogs ever after. Unfriendly dogs off-leash, who may bark, bite or show aggression, will almost certainly scare a child, and adults too.

In Whistler, I have seen all these kinds of behavior from dogs off their leash illegally, and I don't blame the dogs: it's in their nature. I have also seen all kinds of behavior from their owners, a surprising amount of which has been rather unpleasant, argumentative, unnecessarily defensive and plain rude.

I am making a plea to all dog owners in Whistler to adhere to bylaws and common sense, and leash up; to think about the consequences of your dog's behavior (yes, YOUR dog's behavior — even your dog who "doesn't usually do that"). Please help us all to learn to love dogs and share our environment with them even more.

Nina Moore

Whistler

Foodworx Fundraiser a success

On behalf of Whistler Community Services Society (WCSS) Food Bank program I would like to thank our volunteers, sponsors and partners of our business challenge for their support with our recent Foodworx Fundraiser from August 11-18. This fundraiser was developed four years ago with the hope of generating awareness about the food bank program and raising some much needed non-perishable food items during the summer months.

Over 50 per cent of our current users of the food bank are families with small children and these donations are greatly appreciated and assist in feeding community members in need.

The 2012 Foodworx Fundraiser raised $3,825 and 995 pounds in food. This could not have been possible without the assistance of the following volunteers: Morgan Beatty, Martha Heintzman, Freda Cook, Sui Young, Lindsay Roach, Melanie Thorsen, Grace Blok, Sarah Morden, Tricia Mitchell, Miranda Pawlett, Taylor Mitchell, Jessica Averiss, Sarah Colpitts, Brad Monteith, Josh Anderson, Kaija Lewis-Belle and Aspen Lewis-Belle.

A big thank you to all the businesses who participated in our Foodworx Business Challenge: 2012 Winner Fairmont Chateau Whistler, Delta Village Suites, Four Seasons, Whistler Public Library, Remax, and Whistler Real Estate

This event would also not have been possible without our sponsors: Crankworx Whistler, Red Bull, Teva, Ziptrek Ecotours, Sushi Village, Twisted By Choice Jewelry, Garbanzo Bike and Bean and Dups Burrito.

The Whistler Food Bank exists to provide assistance to people and families that need help. Food banks are a temporary solution for people who are doing all that they can to become self-supporting. The community of Whistler has a wide range of services available to help people meet their basic needs and people who use the food bank are made aware of these programs. Food is distributed every Monday from the Whistler Blackcomb Foundation Social Services Centre at 1519 Spring Creek Drive 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. WCSS is recruiting food bank volunteers for Mondays, and Farmer's Market Sundays. For more information about donations, volunteering or accessing the food bank please contact foodbank@mywcss.org.

Jackie Dickinson

Outreach Worker, Whistler Community Services Society

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