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Maple Ridge horse jumping team takes top spots in Dog Days of Summer event – Maple Ridge News

Maple Ridge horse jumping team takes top spots in Dog Days of Summer event - Maple Ridge News

A Maple Ridge team championed in multiple events at the latest hunter jumper show at the Maple Ridge Equi-Sports Centre.

The Dog Days of Summer Hunter Jumper Show had more than 85 competitors from across the Lower Mainland, in addition to Squamish, and the Interior.

Kaitlyn Harbour’s team from Empire Equestrian accumulated many accolades at the event including:

• Geordan Krysak and horse Story Time took the title of Champion in the Cross Rail Hunter division, with Andrea Sylvestri and horse Attie close behind, earning the title of Cross Rail Hunter Reserve Champion, with the second highest points.

• Georgia Dalrymple and horse Athena championed in the Two Foot Hunter division and received third place in the Hunt and Go division, with Sienna Shayler and horse Hemi taking the reserve spot in the Two Foot Hunter division and sixth spot in Hunt and Go.

• Danika Sojka and horse Flower took first place and top ribbons in the Two Foot Hunter and fifth in the Hunt and go.

• Grace Beeley and horse Secret came second in the Accumulator, third in the Empire Medal, and was the Reserve Champion in the .85 Jumpers division.

• Ivory Butler and horse Cruise were Champions in the 1.10 Jumpers and had other top placings.

• Hannah Pringle and horse Maisy were Reserve Champions in the .90 Jumpers division.

• Emily Bettesworth and horse Echo earned top place ribbons int he Cross Rail Hunter and Equitation on the Flat.

• Kate Payne and horse Sugar also earned many top placings in the Trot Rail and Cross Rail divisions.

• And owner and trainer Kaitlyn Harbour with horse Cosmo had top three finishes throughout the weekend in the Open 1.0 category.

The jumper classes were judged on speed, time, and having no faults, explained Harbour. Hunter classes, she added, were judged on rhythm, style, and position of the rider.

“We have been training year round preparing for our competition season,” said Harbour about the team’s great results.

The team is gearing up for competitions in September at both the Maple Ridge Equi-Centre and Thunderbird Show Park in Langley. Next for the team is the September Fall Day Classic Hunter Jumper Show that runs from Sept. 1-4 in Maple Ridge.

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DoubleTree’s catering team could take lead on Reading Country Club events

DoubleTree's catering team could take lead on Reading Country Club events

EXETER TWP., Pa. – Exeter Township supervisors are in negotiations for a partnership with Catering by DoubleTree to bring the Reading Country Club “back to life,” as one supervisor said.

“The Exeter Board of Supervisors are negotiating a strategic partnership with Reading Hospitality Management through their off-premise catering division, Catering by DoubleTree, to open the Reading Country Club for catered events,” read Chairperson George Bell.

“Reading Hospitality manages the highly-ranked award-winning DoubleTree Hilton in Reading, Pa., where Catering by DoubleTree operates its prep kitchens, and sales, marketing and staffing offices,” the announcement stated.

“The partnership would give Catering by DoubleTree the exclusive right to plan and cater all events at the RCC,” Bell continued. “Catering by DoubleTree would do all the marketing, scheduling, event planning and execution at the RCC.”

This would apply to custom-tailored private and community-inclusive events, including weddings, banquets, proms, corporate meetings, and golf outings.

The company will perform all food preparation off site and will staff events with their own trained employees. There will be no upfront costs to the partnership, and all revenue for the township will be applied to the RCC budget.

They will agree to hold monthly community events at the RCC.

Dan Hoch, director of business development for DoubleTree by Hilton Reading, said his group is excited by the possibility of “returning the Reading Country Club back to the one of the hubs of community activity.”

He said the hotel and its catering arm achieved recognition with a strategy that could work for RCC — by operating consistently with the highest level of customer service and operating under one simple tenet of how they can do that while moving a community forward.

Hoch said Catering by DoubleTree wouldn’t be involved in managing golf, but it would be responsible for planning related events as well as a range of other events, including those that are welcoming to the Exeter Township community.

The board said it’s tentatively planning to reopen the club for a food truck event in October as a soft launch of the partnership.

The supervisors voted 4-1 Monday to continue discussions.

The board still needs to vote on final approval.

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Creative team announces free arts events

Creative team announces free arts events

A TWO-MONTH programme of free arts activity is being launched by the government as the first initiative of the new Creative Island Partnership.

The Creative Spaces listings will go on line next week but the draft programme includes films to be screened in the Howard Davis Park, talks in the Jersey Library, live music on the Waterfront and at the Weighbridge, and a lunchtime classical concert at the Town Church.

Economic Development Minister Kirsten Morel heralded the announcement as ‘a post-pandemic investment both in Jersey’s arts and music sector, and in Islanders’ wellbeing’, adding that it would spark the public’s imagination about the spaces we inhabit and how art can help bring them to life.

‘Creative Spaces is about pushing boundaries and showing that art and artists belong everywhere,’ Deputy Morel said. ‘It has the core principles of being free, open and accessible to all; being experimental and innovative; and empowering artists to make use of the space however they feel best expresses their talents and abilities. This is an exciting trial which we hope to see develop, with additional public spaces and more artists and genres in future years.’

The Creative Island Partnership was established following a recommendation in the recent arts strategy and is described as ‘an interdisciplinary arts network for the exchange of knowledge, generation of ideas, and where those involved in the arts community could have direct engagement with government’.

It has helped direct new government funding into a series of workstreams arising from themes identified in the arts strategy, the top priority being given to creative spaces – ‘interesting, underutilised and/or neglected spaces in Jersey that could be used as space for artistic performance, rehearsal, exhibition, studios, installations, and/or makerspace’.

Deputy Morel described the programme as ‘a fantastic first step’ which illustrated the future working relationship between the government and the arts sector, and how the two could come together to help shape the delivery of the arts in Jersey.

‘The government has committed to spending 1% of Jersey’s annual budget on arts, culture and heritage, and we want greater engagement with arts, and the positive benefits that involvement brings. I would encourage anyone who is interested in joining the Creative Island Partnership and contributing their ideas and voice to the future,’ he said.

A spokesperson said they aimed to publish the programme online next week at and that it would be updated on a rolling basis.

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MLB and Make-A-Wish Foundation team up for events during All-Star Week

MLB and Make-A-Wish Foundation team up for events during All-Star Week
MLB and Make-A-Wish Foundation team up for events during All-Star Week – CBS Los Angeles

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Kandiss Crone reports from Elysian Park on a series of fun events put together during All-Star Week by MLB and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, to help grant the wishes of some kids battling very serious illnesses.

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2026 Winter Olympics add eight events, cut Alpine skiing team event

2026 Winter Olympics

Eight events have been added to the program for the 2026 Winter Olympics in Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy.

Ski mountaineering, a new sport added to the 2026 program last year, will have a men’s sprint, women’s sprint and a mixed-gender relay.

New events in existing sports include men’s and women’s dual moguls in freestyle skiing, breaking up the open luge doubles event (where only men have competed) into men’s doubles and women’s doubles, a mixed-gender skeleton team event and a women’s large hill event in ski jumping to match the men’s ski jumping program.

The Alpine skiing team event, which debuted at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games, has been cut. Also in Alpine skiing, the combined events are being included provisionally on the 2026 program and are subject to further review with a final decision no later than April.

On the Alpine World Cup, there were no combined events either of the last two seasons and there are none planned this upcoming season. The combined is still on the biennial world championships program.

The IOC said that Nordic combined is in a “very concerning situation” for staying on the Olympic program beyond 2026.

The IOC said Nordic combined “had by far the lowest audience numbers” over the last three Olympics. It noted that the 27 medals won in the sport among 2014, 2018 and 2022 were spread across “only” four nations.

Its inclusion in the 2030 Winter Olympics depends on significant developments in global participation and audience.

Nordic combined is the lone Olympic sport without female representation.

The International Ski Federation (FIS) began holding women’s Nordic combined World Cups in December 2020. A women’s event debuted at the world championships in February 2021. FIS hoped it would help lead to 2026 Winter Olympic inclusion.

The IOC chose not to add a women’s event for 2026, citing having “only one world championship to date” that had 10 nations represented and the medals won by one nation (Norway). Karl Stoss, chair of the IOC Olympic program commission, said those numbers do not meet universality criteria.

Nordic combined officials believed that their sport was in danger of being dropped from the Olympic program if the IOC opted against adding a women’s event.

The decisive argument for keeping men’s Nordic combined on the 2026 program without a women’s event was the proximity — male athletes are already preparing for the Games.

Men’s events in Nordic combined, which includes ski jumping and cross-country skiing, have been on the program since the first Winter Games in 1924 in Chamonix, France.

The IOC said the overall event changes will make 2026 the most gender-balanced Winter Games in history, upping female participation from 45.4 percent in 2022 to 47 percent.

Due to event quota changes, the overall number of athletes is expected to remain around 2,900.

ON HER TURF: Women’s Nordic combined shut out of 2026

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Anita Alvarez to miss out of team event after fainting at worlds

Anita Alvarez to miss out of team event after fainting at worlds


Team USA synchronized swimmer Anita Alvarez will not compete at the team free event as she recovers after fainting and sinking to the bottom of the pool during a solo routine, the International swimming federation (FINA) announced Friday.

“The health and safety of athletes must always come first,” the swimming federation said in a statement on Friday.

“While FINA understands why this decision will have been disappointing to the athlete, it was a decision that was made with her best interests in mind.”

Her coach Andrea Fuentes is being praised for her quick thinking in rescuing Alvarez, after the Olympian was spotted sinking during her routine on Wednesday.

“It was her best performance ever, she just pushed through her limits and she found them,” Fuentes said in an Instagram post; adding that the 26-year-old swimmer was told by doctors she would be fine.


Alvarez has reposted a story made by her coach showing footage of her having dinner with her teammates with the caption “nothing but love for my team this week and always.”

The decision to bar the athlete from competing was made alongside the Team USA doctor, team leader and President of the USA Artistic Swimming.

“FINA is delighted that Anita Alvarez has already made such a strong recovery, and looks forward to seeing her in competition again soon,” the statement read. 

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Quesnel to team up with Williams Lake and 100 Mile on future extreme heat events : My Cariboo Now

Quesnel to team up with Williams Lake and 100 Mile on future extreme heat events : My Cariboo Now

Quesnel City Council has directed staff to submit a joint application to the Union of BC Municipalities Community Emergency Preparedness Fund.

City Manager Byron Johnson said it made sense to work with the City of Williams Lake and the District of 100 Mile House.

“The thought process is if we’re going to get a consultant into help us it makes sense to amalgamate the three communities and do one larger project, although it will be looking at each community specifically, so its not a generic type of a solution.”

Johnson said the money would be used for a variety of things.

“The grant will fund a project which will help us to map extreme heat and understand our community risks more accurately between now and the 2080’s, including mapping areas, population, structures or assets at risk.  It will also complete a risk assessment of the social, economic and environmental impacts of extreme heat events, and create a plan for response and risk reduction for future heat events.”

Councillor Ron Paull questioned why the Cariboo Regional District wasn’t included.

Mayor Bob Simpson responded.

“I believe the kinds of things you are planning for is sheltering in place, how are you dealing with seniors, it’s more of an urban oriented phenomenon.  And the answer for the CRD for example, would be bringing people into the urban centres or a local solution of some kind, so I believe this is more of an urban oriented grant.”

The City of Williams Lake would administer the project if the grant application is successful.

It would be 100 percent funded.

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Do I Need To Organize Social Events For My Team? columnist Alison Green answers questions about workplace and management issues–everything from how to deal with a micromanaging boss to how to talk to someone on your team about body odor.

Here’s a roundup of answers to three questions from readers.

1. Do I need to organize social outings for my staff?

I manage a staff of about 15 people who work from various locations, so there are many members of my team who won’t see each other if it’s not intentional. For our team to function well, it’s important that we communicate and collaborate. To that end, we have standing meetings, regular professional development sessions and occasional group trips to industry conferences, an orientation process that emphasizes getting to know the rest of the department, etc. … all specifically work-day activities.

Previously, I had a couple of staff members who initiated regular happy hours and other social activities, as well. I was grateful for them because when the work day ends, while I truly enjoy my colleagues, I can’t wait to go home to my family and read a book in the bath. I am also reluctant to be the organizer of happy hours because I don’t want to create “Ugh, I have to go out after work to make my boss happy” situations. That said, I know many people do like to socialize with coworkers. And when someone else organized a happy hour, I went for a drink when I could — it was fun and low-key. I realized recently, however, that after some normal turnover, the main “social directors” are gone and no one has stepped up to take their place. Do I need to take this on? Or can I just go home and lock the door behind me?

You do not need to take this on! You do need to ensure that your team has opportunities to interact and collaborate, and it sounds like you’re doing that. There is nothing that says “and some of those opportunities needs to be after work or with alcohol.”

If you really want to address it, you could say to your whole team, “I’ve realized that since Jane and Marcus left, we haven’t had many happy hours or other social activities since they were generally the organizers. If anyone misses doing those, feel free to organize them! I’m not going to do it myself since I wouldn’t want anyone to feel pressure to attend. But it’s fine if you want to! And it’s fine if you don’t, too.”

2. My employee thinks “thanks” is positive feedback

I have an issue with my direct report, “Karl,” who thinks that when someone thanks him for doing a task, that constitutes positive feedback. He forwards emails to me that read simply “thanks” with notes asking me to take note of the evidence of his fantastic work.

In our work culture, “thanks” means only that someone has received an email. It does not relate in any way to the quality of the work. So by misinterpreting them, Karl is getting an unfairly positive understanding of his work product. This is leading him to push back against the coaching I am doing with him, because his work is in fact unacceptably poor. He gets very upset and defensive at the slightest criticism and often does not seem to take in negative comments. How do I explain that “thanks” and even “great, thanks” does not mean “well done,” in as effective and kind a way as possible?

“I’ve noticed that you’ve forwarded me many emails from people saying ‘thanks.’ That’s an acknowledgement that you did a task for them, but it’s not typically feedback on the quality of your work. However, if you have emails from people talking about the quality of a project you did for them, I’d love to have those.”

You could add, “The sort of feedback that could show praise for your work would be things like if Carrie commented on the thoroughness and accuracy of the report you sent her, or if Bob said he appreciated the nuance in the draft you wrote for him.”

That said, he sounds unreasonable enough, and the issues with his work sound serious enough, that he may not get this no matter what you say. So I wouldn’t make your bar for success here “I find a way to convince Karl of how poor his work is.” Rather, your bar for success is “Karl brings his performance up to a good level quickly or we transition him out.” And if you haven’t already, be very clear with him about that so that he understands that this isn’t a debate.

3. Writing a LinkedIn recommendation for an employee who quit during our busiest time

I run a small organization, and one of our employees recently quit during the busiest time of year by giving two weeks notice. I know that’s professional convention, but given what a specific niche the position is (making it hard to fill) and the timing of the announcement, it put me off. Some of her coworkers were upset by the timing as well.

Now the ex-employee has asked me to write a review on her LinkedIn profile. If she asked me to be a reference for future employers to call, I would, and would give her a positive review. But it irks me to be asked to take time to write a LinkedIn review when she’s already found a new job, and now I’m busy trying to find her replacement. Is it wrong or rude of me to not write one?

It’s pretty petty. The exception to that is if her job is one where it’s very much understood that you you don’t quit at this time of year or without more notice (the way it is for, say, public accountants during tax season, an event planner right before your biggest annual event, or campaign managers the month before Election Day) — but that would need to truly be a norm for the field, not just your own preference. If it’s just that it’s a busy time for the organization and it was inconvenient … well, that’s how these things go sometimes. In that case, if her work was good and you’d have been willing to write her a LinkedIn recommendation otherwise, you shouldn’t withhold it now. (That said, LinkedIn recommendations don’t carry a ton of weight, and you really don’t need to write something extensive.)

Want to submit a question of your own? Send it to

The opinions expressed here by columnists are their own, not those of

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Sports This Week: Sask. rider excited for PBR team concept

Sports This Week: Sask. rider excited for PBR team concept

Abbey, Sask. rider Blake Smith has signed as a free agent with the Austin Gamblers

YORKTON – When it comes to sport development the PBR has proven itself rather adept at building ‘the brand’ of bull riding.

Certainly, bull riding has always been the premier element of rodeos, although I suspect there are saddle bronc riders, barrel racers and others who might take exception to that view. Still bull riders usually finish a rodeo as the highlight of the show.

So back in 1992 a group of 20 riders came up with the idea of shows with only bulls, and the PBR was born.

In the time since its founding PBR has become if not exactly a major sport when measured against football, baseball of stock car racing, at least a sport organization many have heard of.

According to there are now more than 500 bull riders from around the world including the United States, Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico who hold PBR memberships, and events are shown on major networks such as CBS in the U.S. and TSN in Canada.

The success has been in large part because the PBR has always been innovative. They have married the product to key advertising brands. They have taken their events to what would not have been thought of US markets for rodeo, Los Angeles, Las Vega and New York among them.

And the PBR has changed how events are held, for example the PBR Global Cup pitting teams from the five big bull riding nations against each other in a team event setting.

And, now PBR is taking the idea of team versus team bull riding a step farther announcing recently the PBR Team Series, a new team-format league complementing its successful Unleash The Beast premier tour.

The PBR Team Series, which will span June to November 2022 in its inaugural season, following the May conclusion of the Unleash The Beast, is launching with eight founding teams playing a 10-game regular season culminating in a team playoff.

One of those teams is the Austin Gamblers, a team Canadian PBR fans are likely to flock too in-part because the Gamblers selected two-time world champion Jose Vitor Leme with the first pick in the PBR draft.

And of greater importance here in Canada, Griffin Smeltzer of Claresholm, Alta, and Abbey, Sask. rider Blake Smith have signed as free agents with the Gamblers.

Smith said the team concept appeals to him.

“I think it’s just awesome. I played hockey all my life and loved the team aspect,” the 20-year-old told Yorkton This Week. “I’m just thrilled.”

For Smith, who is in only his second year – his top finish was at the Lloydminster PBR Winter Classic last December – being part of a team will be a chance to learn, starting with sage advice Michael Gaffney who will coach the Gamblers.

“I can’t wait to get him videos of my riding,” said Smith who also competed in Yorkton last November.

It’s the same thing being on a team with someone like Vitor Leme. Who Smith said “will hopefully show” younger team members some of the things that have made him the best.

Smith also expects fans to like the team concept. He said when he was playing hockey fans liked wearing the home team’s jersey and he expects PBR fans to be the same.

For Smith being part of the inaugural edition of the Gamblers will be another step on a very new career, a career he said he has always wanted.

“I watched it for as long as I can remember,” he said.

And he recalls a mutton busting ride as a youngster where he made it around the arena when most fell almost immediately. The dismount had him landing on a stone, his hip left throbbing, but he still was thrilled by the ride.

“As soon as I was old enough I was steer riding at my local rodeos,” he said, adding he was hooked. “I couldn’t believe how much I fell in love with it.”

So turning pro was natural, something Smith said he wants to take as far as he can, while making some money along the way too.

To get better you of course need to ride bulls and lots of them.

“One hundred per cent, I’m always looking to improve myself,” said Smith, who went as far as to buy four bulls and set up a facility at home to practice.

Of course in Canada minus 40 weather in winter tends to limit ride options, so Smith called fellow Canuck Smeltzer to ask whether he should venture south to compete. The answer was a big yes.

“So I loaded up my truck and 25 hours later I was in Texas,” said Smith, adding for the last four months “I’ve been getting on bulls all over the U.S.. It’s been the best four months of my life. I’ve loved every minute of it.”