By Mike Jiggens
A national program which kicked off nearly 20 years ago to foster civic pride, environmental responsibility and beautification through community involvement continues to gather steam and involve municipalities from all parts of Canada.
Communities in Bloom held its national awards ceremony in October in Ottawa, honouring municipalities of various population sizes for their beautification efforts over the past year.
Recognized at the top of the honour roll, by population class, were:
• Tignish, P.E.I. (up to 1,000)
• Ashcroft, B.C. (1,001 to 2,000)
• Sussex, N.B. (2,001 to 5,000)
• Southwest Middlesex, Ont. (5,001 to 10,000)
• Brooks, Alta. (10,001 to 35,000)
• Sarnia, Ont. (more than 50,000)
Other award winners included:
• CFB Shilo, Man. (Canadian Forces sustainable communities)
• Lambton Shores, Ont. (class of champions)
• Stratford, Ont. (grand champions)
• Abbeyshrule, Ireland (international challenge, small category)
• Pembroke, Ont. (international challenge, medium category)
• Kamloops, B.C. (international challenge, large category)
Eleven other Canadian municipalities earned outstanding achievement awards for various accomplishments. Those recognized were:
• Qualicum Beach, B.C. (Home Hardware Community Involvement Award)
• Goderich, Ont. (Scotts Community of Gardeners Award)
• Brandon, Man. (CN Urban Forestry Award)
• Boissevain, Man. (National Capital Commission Floral Displays Award)
• Jasper, Alta. (Home Hardware Beauti-Tone Heritage Conservation Award)
• Southwest Middlesex, Ont. (Scotts Turf Builder Landscape Award)
• Yarmouth, N.S. (Canadian Nursery and Landscape Association Environmental Action Award)
• Sun Rivers Resort Community, B.C. (Natura Tidiness Award)
• Chalottetown, P.E.I. (Municipal World WinterLife Award)
• Wood Buffalo, Alta. (Communities in Bloom Foundation Youth Involvement Award)
• Minto, Ont. (The Butchart Gardens Land Reclamation Award)
Participants in 2013 by population class with the winners denoted in bold:
Up to 1,000
• Tignish, P.E.I.
• Carmacks, Y.T.
• Clinton, B.C.
• Kinistino, Sask.
• Valhalla Centre, Alta.
• Ashcroft, B.C.
• Bruderheim, Alta.
• Dawson City, Y.T.
• Lac du Bonnet, Man.
• Sun Rivers Resort Community, B.C.
• Sussex, N.B.
• Kindersley, Sask.
• Maple Creek, Sask.
• Minnedosa, Man.
• St. Stephen, N.B.
• Southwest Middlesex, Ont.
• Amherst, N.S.
• Bay Roberts, Nfld. & Lab.
• Humboldt, Sask.
• Vegreville, Alta.
• Yarmouth, N.S.
• Brooks, Alta.
• Ville d’Alma, Que.
• Beaumont, Alta.
• Sainte-Julie, Que.
• Truro, N.S.
More than 50,000
• Sarnia, Ont.
• Drummondville, Que.
• Trois-Rivieres, Que.
• Whitby, Ont.
• Wood Buffalo, Alta.
Canadian Forces Sustainable Communities
• CFB Shilo, Man.
• 4 Wing Cold Lake, Alta.
• CFB Borden, Ont.
• Garrison Petawawa, Ont.