CHEERS: To Charlottetown native Peter Gallant who coached Kim Eun-jung and her South Korean women’s curling team to a stunning silver medal performance in PyeongChang at the Winter Olympics. The Cinderella squad lost 8-3 to Sweden in the gold medal game. Gallant became head coach in 2016 and helped the team to the South Korean title and eventual berth in the Games. The team took part in the Grand Slam tour in Canada as a preparation for the Olympics. Winning an Olympic medal is a dream come true for Gallant who represented P.E.I. at nine Briers and won a national mixed title for the Island.
JEERS: To Jocelyne Larocque of Canada’s Olympic women’s hockey team for removing her silver medal from around her neck when Canada lost the gold medal game to the U.S. There was a storm of criticism on social media after she removed it following an emotional 3-2 shootout defeat. Where were those critics last month when Swedish captain Lias Andersson tossed his silver medal into the stands after his team lost to Canada at the world junior hockey championships in Buffalo, N.Y., a far more serious display of poor sportsmanship? To her credit, Larocque later apologized to the host committee and her teammates and fans - among others - saying her emotions "got the better of me" and she meant no disrespect.
CHEERS: To a new partnership between Camp Triumph and a group of diabetes camping experts which will allow P.E.I. children with Type 1 diabetes to have the chance to attend diabetes camp in the province this summer. The partnership is supported by donations from the Cornwall/Charlottetown KOA and KKP Charlottetown. It means the diabetes camp will go ahead from July 2 – 6, 2018. Diabetes Canada had announced in early January that Camp Red Fox – the longstanding summer camp at Canoe Cove, would not open this year due to a lack of funding.
CHEERS: To 12-year-old Braydon White, a Grade 7 student at Georgetown School, who will serve as the province’s 2018 Easter Seals Ambassador. Braydon, who has Down’s Syndrome, will have a busy spring, visiting 65 P.E.I. schools during the annual Tim Hortons Ambassador’s tour in April. Good luck, Braydon.
CHEERS: To Prince Edward Island’s early learning and child care system which is rated as the best in Canada. The University of Toronto’s Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) issues The Early Childhood Education Report every three years, measuring provincial and territorial performance in early education and child care, children’s access, quality, and other measures. P.E.I.’s performance has steadily improved since the first report in 2011, sharing the top ranking with Quebec in 2014 with a score of 10 out of 15 points. The latest report released several weeks ago ranks the Island alone in first place with a score of 11.
CHEERS: To City of Charlottetown sustainability officer Ramona Doyle who received an environmental award from the Ellen’s Creek Watershed Group at the February council meeting. The “Brookie Award” was created by the Ellen’s Creek Watershed Group as an award of excellence to an individual, organization or business demonstrating commitment and leadership in promoting urban watershed health.
JEERS: To the City of Charlottetown and department of transportation for the slow response in fixing potholes on streets and highways over the last several weeks. The recent stretch of thaw and freeze has caused an explosion of potholes and broken pavement, catching unwary motorists by surprise, especially when they are filled with water. A cavernous pothole near the corner of Euston and Rochford streets was especially dangerous, but is finally patched, with a warning sign now posted nearby.
CHEERS: To the City of Charlottetown - and Coun. Mitchell Tweel, who led the fight - for acquiring properties at the corner of Queen and Pond streets, to improve sightlines at that intersection long considered a death trap. The intersection has been a sore spot with Tweel, area residents and pedestrians because people say the houses block sightlines for motorists. It posed a danger for students attending nearby Colonel Gray High School and parishioners at Holy Redeemer Church.