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Last updateFri, 24 May 2024 12pm

Dino-sized attempt at record

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While the result won’t be official for a couple of days, it appears that Drumheller has cemented itself as the Dinosaur Captial of the World, as thousands took to the streets of downtown to break the record for “Largest gathering of people dressed as dinosaurs.”
The count took place at 11 a.m. on April 27, 2024, at the Jurassic Jamboree. Michael Empric, an adjudicator with Guinness World Records out of New York, initially told the Mail that they would be able to confirm the record within minutes of the count, however as more and more participants streamed toward the downtown Plaza, the process of counting became more and more difficult.
Empric told the waiting crowd that to get the most accurate count, they would be sending the data to its London office, including the wristband count and drone footage to be tabulated, with the results forthcoming in a couple of days.
What we know, is the prior Guinness record of 252 was set in Los Angeles, California on January 26, 2019. On Saturday morning, Travel Drumheller and volunteers gave out 3,000 wristbands to participants. People came from all over the province, and in the crowd, there was representation from as far away as Yukon, Nova Scotia and Las Vegas in costume.
Volunteer stewards were amongst the crowd to make sure that participants were in costume and remained so for one minute for the record to count. The designated area for the count could only contain people in costumes.
“I am super overwhelmed, I cannot believe the response. This is way bigger than I ever imagined," said Keri Looijen of Travel Drumheller, of the turnout. “The community support has been incredible.”
The event was quickly planned and grew ever quicker. Despite this, a strong crew of volunteers signed up. Throughout downtown there was music, food trucks and activities.
“I don’t know what we would do without the volunteers. They have been so amazing and helping with everything we needed,” said Looijen.
Empric of Guinness explained the New York office takes care of record attempts throughout North America, and he is typically on the road at least once a week adjudicating similar attempts.
“What I like about this is that it is so appropriate for the community. It is so specific to Drumheller and what the community is about,” said Empric.
When verified, a record holder certificate will be issued.


Drumheller considers forming Sports Council

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Rick Ladouceur, Town of Drumheller's Manager of Recreation, Arts & Culture.

The Town of Drumheller is looking into establishing a Sports Council as a new way to connect the Valley.

Thanks in part to Town of Drumheller’s (TOD) Manager of Recreation, Arts & Culture, Rick Ladouceur’s 2023 Parks & Recreation Master Plan, the Town is exploring the possibility of a Sports council.

Ladouceur presented council members with a Request for Direction at the Monday, April 15, Committee of the Whole Meeting about the proposed council, which could be made up of one TOD councillor and seven members-at-large. They will be an advisory group, and a forum for the Valley, when it comes to all opportunities and issues relating to sports.

The objectives of the council will be to share information between different sports organizations, improve various aspects of sport opportunities and bring sporting events to the valley, while providing an accessible and inclusive environment for everyone in the community.

“The formation of Drumheller’s Sports Council provides an important forum for identifying concerns and opportunities for sports in our area,” says Ladouceur during the meeting. “It will integrate a grass-roots initiative, athlete empowerment, state-of-the-art facilities and tourism.”

In the proposal, in order for an organization to get a membership for the Sports Council certain criteria must be met. Applicants must have current involvement with sports in TOD, with a letter of endorsement from their organization. Applicants will also be required to commit to the council for the duration of time, either one or two years. They must also have a strong understanding of any issues that are relevant to sports development in the community.

Council provided direction to establish a short-term task force that would bring on interested parties in a sports council to help shape the terms of reference for establishing and operating a Sports Council.

Council adopts amendments to operating and capital budgets

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At the Regular Council Meeting on April 22, 2024, Council passed the amendments to the 2024 Property Tax-Supported Operating and Capital Budgets. The suggested amendments to the previously approved budgets are a result of cost overruns in several capital projects.
The changes represent a 2.6% increase. Impacts due to this increase will be funded by the Town through the contingency reserve.
The Town’s anticipated 4% tax increase is a response to the high interest rate and inflationary environment and is comparable to other municipalities in Alberta. Council had initially passed the 2024 Property Tax-Supported Operating Budget of approximately $22.3 million, including requisitions at the January 22, 2024, Regular Council Meeting.
The Operating Budget is prepared with a four-year outlook and is reviewed and approved annually. This financial planning provides a strong foundation and the ability for the organization to be flexible with future projects and initiatives.
One quarter, or $5.475 million, of the Town’s 2024 Operating Budget, is represented by provincial requisitions. The Town is responsible for collecting and remitting provincial requisitions, including the Education Requisition (13%), Seniors’ Lodge Requisition (3%) and the RCMP Policing Contract (9%).
“Although inflationary costs have been on somewhat of a downward trend, they remain elevated from those of months ago when the Capital Budget was passed,” says Councillor Tony Lacher. “These same elevated costs flow through to the annual Operating Budget; however, Council is pleased to hold steady on the 4% tax increase proposed at that time.”
Based on the property assessments in the Town of Drumheller for 2023, an average residential property is assessed at $234,000. With the 4% increase in the tax rate, an average homeowner can anticipate seeing an additional $81.66 for the year, or $0.22 per day. The budgeting process is focused on achieving balance, investing in infrastructure and increasing the efficiencies in service delivery while exploring opportunities to reduce costs.


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